If you’ve been wondering what to wear this summer, you’ve come to the right place! Cute summer style when you are plus-size and mid-size is about striking that delicate balance between looking great and staying cool. And let’s keep it real, you are going to sweat this summer, there’s no if, and’s or butts about it, especially if you are planning to get out there. But, believe it or not, it is possible to have great summer style through the hottest days of the year. So forget everything you ever learned about what plus-size women can wear in the summer; and follow these 4 easy tips when building your summer wardrobe.

Make Your Clothes Work For You

When it comes to beating the heat, pieces with lightweight construction (meaning they flow easily and don’t feel heavy on the skin), work because they help you take full advantage of the breeze, if there is one. Natural fibers like linen, cotton and chambray (made of cotton or lyocell—a natural fiber made from eucalyptus), allow air to flow freely through the fabrics for optimal comfort. Rayon is not a natural fiber but it’s still a great summer fabric. It has thinner threads than even cotton which allow air to move more freely than other synthetic fibers. The Catch-22 is that natural fabrics are often more expensive, so if you want the natural feel without the natural price, consider fabric blends. Cotton/rayon mixes will be less expensive and still provide all the light airy benefits of cotton.

Master The Basics

The foundation of any functional wardrobe are basic pieces that are easily mixed and matched with other more trendy pieces in your closet. For example , you wouldn’t go into fall without at least one new pair of go-to jeans right? The same is true for summer. A couple of classic pairs of shorts is all it takes to get your summer style off to a running start. Try plus-size Bermuda shorts when sightseeing in a new place or being a tourist in your own city. They offer the casual ease of shorts while avoiding the horrors of chub rub with their longer inseam that usually stops about 1 inch above the knee. Have fun with Bermuda shorts and get them in multiple colors—classic white is a must-have summer color. Throw in a pair of plus-size short shorts for beach days and you will be prepared for just about any summer adventure.

Play With Color And Pattern

Think of the summer as your invitation to lighten and brighten your wardrobe. From tropical floral prints to hot pink dresses, it’s all fair game. A colorful pants or dress with an intricate print in extended sizes offers so much versatility. Experiment throughout the season styling it with pieces that compliment the colors throughout the print. Or turn heads with a contrasting color for an interesting pop. There’s no wrong way to do it as long as you are having fun.

Add A Splash Of Trend
Last but not least, shake things up! Even though plus-size fashion trends can be short lived they can add something fresh and new to your style each year. Square necklines, ruched bodices and tiered plus-size dresses are everywhere right now and they can work for any and every body type. The best part is that you are free to express and explore trends in whatever way makes you feel the best about yourself. Don’t be afraid to take some fashion risks.

Visit dia.com today for more plus-size summer style inspo!