Style Bee - Summer Closet

Summer Foundation Closet


 Style Bee - Summer Closet

First and foremost let me wish a very HAPPY CANADA DAY to all of you tuning in from our home and native land! I’m so proud to be from such an incredible country and feel truly thankful to call Canada my home. July 1st always feels like the true start to summer for me. Everything is green, the days are super long and we’re usually headed to a cottage or, like this year, a camping trip in the amazing Algonquin park. So what better time than now to launch my Summer Foundation Closet?

If you’ve been following Style Bee this year you’ll know about my 2015 Closet Mission and how I’ve been working hard to understand my Style Story, to better Define my personal style and create a closet that helps me put my best self forward. It’s been a considerable undertaking but now it’s really paying off! I hope my posts and workbooks have helped a few of you on your own wardrobe contentment journey too.

The idea of Capsule Closets has been creating a ton of buzz this year. Blogs like Into Mind and Un-Fancy have made great cases for shopping intentionally and making more conscious decisions as consumers and I LOVE it! I even took a stab at a mini capsule closet with my 10 x 10 Challenge this spring. But as much as I’m into the concept, living out of a capsule closet doesn’t totally jive with me. I explained more about why that is here but basically it comes down to wanting more freedom and room to have fun with fashion, while being careful not to get carried away. So I decided to create a Summer Foundation Closet of 20 staple pieces that would serve as my style backbone for the summer. These are items that I can mix and match with each other and add onto as the season goes. They’re what I feel best fits my core personal style and items I can see wearing for years to come, not just weeks or months.

Now let’s talk a bit more about this so called ‘Foundation Closet’ shall we?

Style Bee - Summer Closet


It’s finally here! I know I’ve hinted, mentioned and teased about it for ages now but at long last I’m ready to reveal the 20 core pieces that will make up my summer closet. Similar to my spring mini capsule I’ll be using these 20 items to create 20 different looks, which I’ll share here on the blog. My goal for this exercise is to reveal how much versatility can come from a small selection of clothing. It’s easy to think you need a whole new wardrobe when you feel like you have nothing to wear. But if you just isolate your most favourite items you may suddenly have a lot more options and freedom! Then when you’re ready to add something new you know what it needs to work with.

My foundation closet breaks down like this:

  • 5 TOPS
  • 4 SHOES

I went for super wearable and highly versatile items to maximize my options. I didn’t include accessories like hats, jewelry or bags in my count of 20 items but I’ll be adding those post by post to round out each look.

Some of these items are new but many have been in my closet for several seasons and have become my everyday essentials. I kept the colour palette lean and fresh for summer but didn’t shy away from black. As you may have already gathered, I’m not one for bold prints or bright colours but if that’s your thing then you can totally tailor your selection to suit.

Style Bee - Summer Closet

So let’s quickly run through the items I chose and why*!

  1. Boho Blouse (Aritzia) – Summer brings out my bohemian side and this airy number is lightly detailed and a perfect flowy fit.
  2. Classic Wedges (Rachel Comey) – My heart sang when I spotted these. The quintessential summer wedge! Super simple and timeless.
  3. Denim Skirt (American Apparel) – A little 90’s but still so chic! This one has a high waist and isn’t too short which were two key requirements.
  4. Black Shorts (Formation Design Studio) – After a seemingly endless search I found a fabulous pair of relaxed fit, black cotton shorts. Seems like so many designers forget that black exists when it comes to summer shorts!
  5. Maxi Dress (Ace & Jig) – The holy grail of summer dresses. ‘Nough said.
  6. Chucks (Converse) – How could I not include Summers favourite sneaker?
  7. Clogs (No.6 Store) – A personal favourite. Clogs, especially in a light colour, somehow sweeten any look they’re paired with. Shown recently here.
  8. Flares (Madewell) – That 70’s vibe has got me good! Feeling like my legs are 10 feet long ain’t bad either.
  9. White Denim Jacket (GAP) – Over shadowed by it’s sister the blue denim jacket, white denim sees the spotlight from me in the summer.
  10. Crop Top (Elizabeth Suzann) – One of my all time favourite tops. So soft and so comfy while still sophisticated and chic.
  11. Distressed Denim Shorts (Madewell) – Because cottages and campgrounds just don’t feel right without them!
  12. Striped Linen Tee (Elizabeth Suzann) – I love the boxy but slightly cropped fit of this tee. It arrived only a little while ago and it’s been on repeat!
  13. Maxi Skirt (Nasty Gal) – One of the oldest items in this capsule and a steadfast summer fave. I first wore it on the blog here.
  14. Silk Tank (Everlane) – Sublimely silky and beautifully cut for tucking into shorts and layering.
  15. White Skinnies (Madewell) – These are akin to Chucks as far as summer essentials go.
  16. Denim Vest (J.Crew) – Who needs sleeves? The perfect summer night layering piece.
  17. Black Tee (Style Mint) – I just had to throw in a pure basic for good measure.
  18. Slides (Sol Sana) – Loving the modern feel of these black beauties. A chic alternative to Birks.
  19. Linen Oversized Jacket (Need Supply) – An old favourite, first seen here.
  20. Striped Tee Dress (Calder Blake) – If Saturday could be turned into a dress, it would be this one!


*All links are to the actual product or a very similar option.


I would love if you joined me in this fun exercise! You can follow along here as I share a few looks each week and/or on Instagram (@leevosburgh) where I’ll be using the hashtag #StyleBeeSummer20. What would make your Summer Foundation Closet? I’d love to see and hear what your favourite staples are and why you keep coming back to them. It’s a great way to save up for Fall and the perfect opportunity to put your styling skills and creativity to the test! Plus there’s no rules or lines drawn in the sand. It’s just about understanding your style and seeing how that can help make life a little simpler! So what do you say? 

Leave me a comment here!

  1. Katelynn says:

    Hey Lee! I recently discovered your blog through Pinterest. You have such a great sense of style. I am super intrigued with the idea of the “Capsule” closet. I want to give it a try, but I must admit my closet is overwhelmingly full (and continues to grow) How did you go about minimizing your closet, any tips?


    • Lee the Bee says:

      Hi Katelynn, Thanks so much for visiting my blog! So glad you like it. I can totally relate to the overstuffed closet and wanting to regain composure. Here are a couple great resources to get you started – 1. 30 Day Shopping Fast || 2. Closet Clean Out || 3. Define Your Style || 4. 10 x 10 Challenge. Hope that helps!! xo

  2. Rania says:

    Oh, I’m excited about this!!

  3. Jennifer says:

    Lee- what do you wear under the white blouse (#1)? I just bought it and am wondering what to wear under it so it’s not as revealing. Thank you!

    • Lee the Bee says:

      Hey Jennifer, Good question. I usually just wear an opaque, nude bralette underneath (this one is my fave and gives good coverage). Hope that helps! xo

  4. Myrna says:

    Great idea ! This is great for me because I’m trying to weed out my closet of all the things I haven’t used in the last year. It’s hard though because I love a lot of those pieces and afraid to part with them. This idea will get me to play more with the items I use often.
    Thanks Lee have a fantastic weekend.


    • Lee the Bee says:

      Thanks Myrna! In all my closet purging experience I’ve never once missed an item once I’ve parted with it. It’s totally an out of sight out of mind scenario but it’s still hard to let go sometimes. This is the perfect exercise to test out those pieces you’re on the fence about. If you give it an honest test and find it’s just not working for you then you know it’s time to say goodbye. Hope your weekend has been great! xo

  5. Kate says:

    I love this idea! I might have to try it. I’m a capsuler (is that a thing?) but I always have 40+ pieces in my wardrobe to give me a little extra cushion- but I would love to see how it would change my views of clothing to just have 10 pieces!

    I love the pieces you chose, clearly they’re well-made, high quality things I’d definitely never tire of. Love it!


    • Lee the Bee says:

      Thanks Kate! Haha It is totally a thing to be a “capsuler”. If nothing else this exercise will be great for days when I get up and don’t know what to wear, because I’ll have a little catalogue of ideas! 40 pieces is a great number! I eased in with 10 to practice and with 20 I feel like I have infinite options. xoxo