Holiday Capsule Wardrobe: 10 Must-Have Pieces for 2023 Summer

Summer, without a doubt, takes the crown as my ultimate favorite season. It’s the time when I meticulously organise my most unforgettable getaways, all revolving around those scorching temperatures. Picture this: exotic escapades to foreign countries, sun-bathing on sandy beaches, cocktails by the pool, and an immersive infusion of the vibrant Mediterranean culture. All the fun things that make my summer weeks off an absolute delight and the highlight of my year. And that’s precisely why I’m thrilled to write this article as a guide for the perfect Holiday Capsule Wardrobe.

Now, I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who experiences a touch of anxiety when it comes to the dreaded packing torment for vacations. I mean, let’s be real here. For weeks (or for some of us, even months), we are on the hunt for the perfect summer outfit, that flawless bikini, or those stylish sandals. However, many European airlines (and probably airlines worldwide too) steadily reducing their baggage allowance. So it’s becoming quite the challenge to squeeze in all those fabulous new garments we bought with our vacation plans in mind!

After splurging on that extra luggage space, there is nothing more infuriating than returning home from a vacation only to discover that half of the clothes we painstakingly packed remained untouched throughout the entire trip!

For this reason, I decided to write an article revealing the ideal holiday capsule wardrobe containing all the must-have items, so this summer you can bid farewell to the packing nightmare and adjust your shopping just in time accordingly.

10 Must-Have Pieces in Your Summer Holiday Capsule Wardrobe

Item (click to read)
Casual Summer Dress
Summer Evening Dress
Tops and Blouses
Summer Skirt
Casual Summer Footwear

Holiday Item # 1:
Casual Summer Dress

So here is the reason why this is at the very top of my list. Daytime summer dresses will easily claim the throne as your ultimate vacation essential, since it will be worn – safe to say – 80% of the time. From walks through charming old towns and museum explorations to relaxed beachside lunches and shopping tours, these dresses will effortlessly accompany you on all your summer adventures.

Holiday Capsule Wardrobe - Deep Mysterious Blue, Sea Blue, Turqoise Summer Casual Dress Example for you to wear on your next Summer Holiday
Holiday Capsule Wardrobe - Playful Grass Green, Mint Lime Green Summer Casual Dress Example for you to wear on your next Summer Holiday

When it comes to selecting your casual summer dress, it’s crucial to opt for something effortless and hassle-free. Dresses with zippers are an excellent choice, they are easy to wear without consuming precious time. Comfort is key since you’ll be in this outfit mostly, with possibly no time for a wardrobe change during the day. In terms of fabric choices, go for a breathable material like cotton, ideal for absorbing sweat and keeping you cool. Now, let’s talk color selection! I recommend opting for vibrant colourful patterns that deviate from your usual winter or work wardrobe. Not only will this add a pop of excitement to your look, but it’s also a wise move to conceal any accidental food stains (which are almost inevitable on a holiday).

Holiday Item # 2:
Elegant Summer Evening Dress

Don’t forget to include an evening dress that stands out from your casual daywear. There are no hard and fast rules for what defines an evening dress—it’s all about finding a piece that makes you feel extraordinary and boosts your confidence. Think of something slightly extravagant, a touch over the top. This will be perfect for those summer dinner parties at seaside restaurants. To save space, we suggest selecting a dress in a similar color tone to the one mentioned earlier, so you can pair it with the same shoes. And don’t forget, when it comes to hot summer evenings, natural fabrics are a splendid choice to keep you cool and comfortable.

Holiday Item # 3:
Linen of Your Holiday Capsule Wardrobe

A summer getaway is incomplete without a breezy linen garment in your suitcase! The choice of colors available for linen clothes, be it a shirt, dress, or trousers or shorts, is absolutely exhilarating! With its moisture-absorbent properties and remarkable durability, linen becomes the perfect summer attire for those scorching holiday destinations.

Holiday Capsule Wardrobe Item # 4:
Tops and Blouses

Holiday Capsule Wardrobe versatile peach jersey top at Aya Mana
Holiday Capsule Wardrobe deep orange peach jersey top at Aya Mana

When it comes to preparing the ultimate holiday capsule wardrobe, versatility is the name of the game. The goal is to create several outfits using a minimal number of garments. That’s where tops and shirts become your best friends—they effortlessly mix and match with various bottoms, creating endless distinct looks. Don’t hesitate to embrace bold and vibrant colors because, let’s face it, summer is the perfect time to shine! Unleash your creativity by pairing blouses with your favorite skirts and shorts, unlocking a fantastic summer look every time.

Holiday Item # 5:
Summer Skirt

No summer suitcase is complete without a versatile and effortlessly chic skirt. It’s a must-have item that adds a touch of elegance or a dash of leisurely charm to your vacation wardrobe. Pair it with the tops and blouses you’ve already packed, creating a variety of stylish looks. Opt for A-line or wrap skirts, as they are not only flattering but also comfortable for both evening dress-up occasions and casual city strolls.

Holiday Item # 6:

To perfect your breezy summer look, nothing beats a vibrant silk scarf or a handmade summer satchel. Scarves not only shield you from the occasional chilly breeze but also add a touch of elegance when draped over your shoulders during cool evenings. And don’t forget to grab a stylish summer satchel to not only complement your outfit but also carry your favorite summer novel on leisurely walks. These accessories not only elevate your look but also serve practical purposes, making them essential additions to your holiday repertoire.

Holiday Item # 7:
Long pair of trousers

Aya Mana - Holiday Capsule Wardrobe Long Mustard Trousers for Summer
Aya Mana - Holiday Capsule Wardrobe Long White Trousers for Summer with Mauve top

You might assume that I’ve confused the seasons, but trust me, I haven’t! Long trousers are an absolute must-have for all types of holidays, even those hot summer getaways. They not only have your back on cooler days but also serve as a protection against relentless mosquitoes that come out to play in the evenings by the beach. To save space in your luggage, consider wearing your long trousers on the flight since they tend to be the bulkier garments to carry. Once again, when it comes to breathability and temperature control, you can’t go wrong with linen or cotton woven materials. As for colors, it’s best to coordinate with the tones of the tops and blouses you’ve already packed, as mentioned earlier. If you’ve opted for warm peach and orange hues, shades like white, sandy, and mustard make for perfect companions.

Holiday Item # 8:
Casual Footwear

Nomasei’s Image
Pikolinos’ Image
Saola’s ‘ Image

Make sure to reserve some space in your luggage for a selection of casual footwear to accompany you on your holiday. 

Include a closed pair of shoes for cooler days. To save space, wear these on your flight since they tend to be the bulkiest items in your holiday capsule wardrobe. Pick a pair that complements the long trousers in step # 7. If you’re going for a chic look, opt for a pair of classy brogues, while casual or sporty lace-ups add a relaxed vibe. 

When it comes to your casual and evening dresses, a pair of heeled sandals works wonders. For the color palette shown earlier, consider white or earthy tones to complement your outfits flawlessly. 

And of course, don’t forget your trusty flip-flops, an absolute must-have for the beach! Choose a color that harmonizes with your bikinis and beach dress for a coordinated and chic look.

Holiday Item # 9:
Swimwear and beachwear

aya mana holiday capsule wardrobe swimwear

It goes without saying that swimwear is an absolute essential for your summer getaway. So, let’s not forget to pack it! Embrace your adventurous side and dare to play with colors and use it to express your style. Oh, and a friendly reminder: make sure to let your swimwear dry before layering your beachwear on top. The salty water can cause the dye in your clothes to fade! Enjoy your beach days in style, while also keeping your swimwear and outfits in top shape.

Holiday Item # 10:
Cosy Summer Pajamas

Amidst the excitement of flaunting our newly purchased dresses,, it’s easy to overlook the importance of nightwear. However, practicality should not be ignored. So don’t forget to make room for a cozy, breathable nightgown. Opting for a lovely white cotton is a splendid decision in combating the heat. While it may seem obvious to choose short-cut pajamas, beware of mosquitoes! They’re fairly frequent in coastal regions. It might be wise to consider covering up instead to protect yourself.


In conclusion, this comprehensive guide unveils the secrets to packing light. And at the same time, maximizing your outfit options in your holiday capsule wardrobe. The carefully selected colors take into account weather conditions, practicality and style demands. But remember, feel free to explore and discover what suits you best! Don’t forget to sign up and follow us on social media to be the first to receive our next set of invaluable holiday outfit tips and tricks. And if you are looking for more flowy beach dress ideas, checkout this great article. Stay tuned for more fashion inspiration!

23 thoughts on “Holiday Capsule Wardrobe: 10 Must-Have Pieces for 2023 Summer

  1. Cynthia says:

    I travel frequently to Europe and never take more than a carry-on! I love a good capsule wardrobe for this reason. You’ve got some great ideas for the summer!

  2. Lyosha says:

    so useful! I definitely enjoy the benefits of packing light but it often brings my fashion lower. your capsule advice here definitely takes the maximum of the clothes.

  3. Jeanine says:

    This is a great wardrobe, and fit for the summer months…I love you managed 3 pairs of shoes they are my guilty pleasure and I never seem to have enough room for all I love..

  4. Debbie says:

    This is so perfect for me! I’m always stumped on cute outfits. I love #2! Perfect for summer date night!

  5. Valery says:

    Living in florida, I would be lost without casual, thin summer dresses! You’ve convinced me to add a breezy linen piece too, though! Thanks for putting this together!

    • Aya Mana says:

      Hi Valery, thanks for your comment! Yes, it’s always a good idea to add some linen to your collection, I’m glad you liked the article!

  6. Sakira says:

    This post was helpful! I tend to forget to pack light because I always feel like I need everything with me hahah.

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