Picture this. It’s a beautiful Sunday afternoon. Autumn. Spring. It doesn’t matter. You and your significant other decide to rent a boat (or take yours out, if you own one) and take advantage of the gorgeous weather by spending the day on the water. You pack a picnic lunch. Maybe even a bottle of prosecco to toast to... well, life. After a few hours cutting through the waves, basking in the sunshine, and turning back into the harbor, you and your beloved watch the sunset from the deck of a seafood restaurant. You fill up on fresh fish and sip a glass of white just before dusk. Now, what will you wear on this majestic day? Sweatpants? A ball gown? A pantsuit? None of the above. But what exactly is appropriate boating attire? Here are a few suggestions to help you pick the right outfit.
White pants are almost synonymous with seafaring. It’s such a classic look. The Hollywood starlets of yesteryear were captured time and time again sporting white pants, both on the silver screen and off. White pants will never go out of style, especially when you are on the water. And the great thing about white pants is that you can wear them with any kind of top. But we suggest a black-and-white striped top with a 3/4 sleeve. Finish off your outfit with a pair of flat sandals, ballet flats, or black loafers, and tie a little red scarf around your neck to add a pop of color. Black-and-white with just a touch of red against a backdrop of clear blue water? You’ll look like you were born to sail.
You can’t go wrong on land or at sea with women’s jeans, a T-shirt, and a sweater. A sweater is your best friend on the water, where it’s likely to be windy and thus a bit chillier than if you were on dry land. When you don’t need it, you can loosely wrap the sleeves around your neck and allow the sweater to drape across your shoulders and down your back—an elegant touch. Regarding style, anything goes. For jeans, both dark blue denim and light blue denim work well. Almost any fit works, though skinny jeans or straight leg jeans that stop at the ankle might offer the most flattering look. For t-shirts, pair a crisp white tee with blue denim or a women’s cashmere sweater. Ribbed knit sweaters in any solid color or design pair nicely with the classic jeans-and-a-T-shirt combination.
If you are feeling a bit dressier or this outing is romantic, don a floral dress: a short floral with short sleeves, a short floral with long sleeves, a long floral with short sleeves, a long dress with long sleeves... it doesn’t matter. All shapes, sizes, and styles work nicely, regardless of whether it’s spring, summer, or fall. The same can be said for colors. Virtually any color—from white to green to blue to purple to red—will look good. If you feel like accessorizing, finish off your look with a sun hat and a pair of oversized sunglasses.
When you’re keeping things casual, turn to a tank top and linen pants. It can be thrown together in under two minutes and make you look great. If you are looking for a no-muss-no-fuss solution, stick to a monochromatic pairing, such as two shades of beige or black. However, even the most casual of outfits can make a fashion statement. Pair striped linen pants with a copper-colored top, or linen pants and a tank top finished off with a blazer, belt, and a long chain necklace. Another casual alternative is leggings paired with an oversized T-shirt, sweater, or tank.
If swimming is on the agenda, then a bathing suit is a must. It can be worn with a cover-up, flip-flops or sandals, a big floppy hat, sunglasses, and lots of bangles. And the choice is entirely yours: bikini, one-piece, something modern, or something vintage. Any bathing suit will look good so long as it reflects your personal taste. You might even want to bring a few bathing suits in different styles. That way you can wear a different one depending on the type of setting you are in. Perhaps you are on a family boat surrounded by loved ones and friends, or you might be on a boat (can we say cruise?) with folks you don't know. Whatever the case may be, you'll want to have more than one bathing suit handy to show off your style to others!