On those super hot days is there any better feeling than the sweet relief of air conditioning?  Those first few seconds when the cool air hits your body has to be what heaven feels like.  Oh man, it is so good.   Yet, wait just a few minutes and that relief soon starts to feel like someone abandoned you naked on an iceberg.  Am I the only one who has left a heavily air conditioned place only to find myself actually feeling good getting into a car that has been sitting in the sun for hours?  As I start to regain feeling in my fingers and toes the sweltering heat is oddly welcomed.  Of course, that feeling of relief lasts mere minutes and it isn’t long before I am wishing for more AC again.  Good, lord, hot, cold, hot, cold, back, forth, back forth.  Ah, summer.  It’s like this weird game, and we’re either sweating like pigs or freezing like human popsicles.  There is absolutely no middle.

Everyone talks about the importance of layering in the autumn and winter but nobody addresses the fact that this way of dressing is equally important in the summer.  Considering most public places seem to have one air conditioning setting, aptly named Arctic Chill, how can anyone leave the house without some sort of coverage?

Last week I shared my tips on professional tips for staying warm at the office in the summer and below are five smart choices for pieces you can carry with you for casual and why.  Check them out below.  Trust me, when you’re shivering in a movie theater you’ll thank me.

How to Dress Warm in the Summer

#1- A denim jacket

dress warm in the summer There are a few reasons why owning a denim jacket, like this one from J. Crew, in the summer is smart.  First, it’s the perfect weight for light coverage.  Second, it’s denim, it will match anything you are wearing.  You don’t want an entire jacket collection for summer, one is enough, and a denim jacket will definitely be a smart choice.

In this outfit, I styled the denim jacket with a maxi dress from Modcloth.  However, it will go with whatever outfit you are wearing.  For a casual look, I added these Anthropologie wedge sandals, a pendant necklace from Stella & Dot, bangles from Max & Chloe and peach bag from Coach.

#2- A Pashmina scarf

dress warm in the summerA large scarf, like this one from Nordstrom in Modal and silk, is perfect for warm weather.  You can also fold it up and throw it in your bag while outside and use it for sun protection in addition to keeping warm.

In this look, I added the scarf to this sleeveless top from Boden, boyfriend jeans from Gap, a pair of gold sandals from Modcloth, a white bag from Vince Camuto and hoop earrings from Macy’s.

#3- Cardigan

dress warm in the summer Keeping a few cardigans from the colder months on hand is a smart idea.  However, be sure that the cardigans you take into the summer don’t look too “cold weather.”  An open, lightweight style, like this one from Tory Burch is easy enough to grab and layer over your summer looks.  Have a cardigan in a neutral color that will match whatever your are wearing so that the cardigan looks like more of a purposeful choice.

In this outfit I used this cardigan with a burgundy summer dress, a pair of blue chambray flats from Boden, a blush handbag and gold chandelier earrings.  Summery and still warm.

#4- A light jacket in khaki

dress warm in the summerColor is important when choosing a lightweight jacket.  Again, like the denim option, you want to make sure that what you have one hand will work with whatever colors you are wearing.  A khaki jacket or jacket is a smart choice, or you can also go for something similar, like this heathered bomber from the Gap that has been styled with a pair of easy drawstring pants from Theory and white J. Crew tank.  Finishing the look, I added these Birkenstock sandals, a pink scarf from Nordstrom, opal Bauble Bar earrings and mushroom colored bag from Marc by Marc Jacobs.

#5 A short sleeve blazer

dress warm in the summer If your blazers just seem too hot and ridiculous to wear in the summer, here is a suggestion, what about a short sleeve style, like this blazer from Theory?  It’s a way to go.  In this outfit I styled it with a cobalt blue t-shirt, that can be worn alone without the jacket, a pair of white jeans from White House|Black Market, black sandals from Isola, a black and white bag by Gabriella Rocha and blue stud earrings from Kate Spade.

Stay warm this summer with these suggestions and you’ll be stylish without icicles hanging off your nose!