Island Stylin’

Fashion Forecast: Summer 2018’s Hottest Trends

By SANDRA WEYANT | May 16, 2018
Photo by: Ryan Morrill Island Gypsy

Summer is right around the corner, and it’s going to be a hot one! Which trends are heating up the runways these days? Experts from Wink Boutique and Island Gypsy gave us the 4-1-1 on the need-now styles for all women.

Lindsay Sweeney, owner of Wink Boutique, always had a passion for fashion, and opened her first store at the young age of 21 while she was attending college at Philadelphia University for a degree in fashion merchandising. Keeping up with family tradition, Sweeney opened up shop in a single shack in Viking Village in Barnegat Light. After much success, she took the opportunity to expand her store into a second shack when one became available, and not long after, opened a second boutique.

“Viking Village is like a family thing. My aunt is next door, and she owns the Sugar Shack. My other aunt owned Viking Outfitters, my sister owns How You Brewin?, and my mom owns The Seawife,” Sweeney said.

To merchandise Wink, Sweeney takes inspiration from the brands she loves, such as Free People. She even refers to her store as the beachy version of Anthropologie because it gives off a relaxed, bohemian vibe. “I search for unique brands that resemble Free People because everyone loves the look, but not necessarily the price points. I started buying slowly from this brand called BB Dakota, and now it’s my number one line. I usually just play around and see what works with my customers. Most things are flowy and lightweight to be comfortable for summer.”

The overall customer shopping experience is just as important to Sweeney as her unique merchandise, and she and her store associates enjoy walking each client around to find key pieces that will look good on them. “Everybody has great features on their body, so we really try to help people find outfits that accentuate their best features. If you have nice legs, we’ll get you into a great dress or a beautiful, fitted pant. We work with all different body types and ages,” Sweeney said. “Our customer ranges from age 14 up to 65.”

Island Gypsy, situated in the heart of Beach Haven, has a similar atmosphere and features fashions for all ages, too. The store opened in 2013 for its first season, and store manager Jill Guidice describes it as “sophisticated and beachy, but not all beachy. Not extremely dressy. Fashion-forward. We have a broad range of customers, from the teenage girl to the more mature woman.

“We get a lot of moms shopping with their daughters, and they will all grab handfuls of stuff. We hear stories about moms and daughters fighting over clothes in their closets, so there’s really something for everyone,” Guidice said.

Need to refresh your summer wardrobe? Look no farther than Wink Boutique and Island Gypsy for the latest and greatest trends to hit the beach.

ALL ABOUT COLOR: It’s time to ditch those dark hues, and brighten up your look with this season’s show-stopping shades. Radiate confidence in colors for all skin tones.

Go For the Bold. This summer will be red-hot! Rock your favorite color out and loud. It’s not just a statement color … it’s patriotic, too.

“Around Memorial Day and Fourth of July, we’ll have plenty of red to get your party outfits ready. Pair a red top with white shorts or jeans. It’s a classic look that a lot of people like,” Sweeney said. “It never goes out.”

When you hear the word summer, you automatically think about bright, warm days, and yellow is the best color to represent just that. Get ready to outshine the sun in cheerful, vivid yellows.

“Bold colors are not appealing to everyone, so we tell our customers to add a pop of color to their outfit through accessories, like shoes, a handbag or a necklace. They don’t have to necessarily wear it,” Sweeney said.

Pretty in Pastels. Who wants ice cream? We’ll all scream for this trend: “ice cream colors.” Mint green, lovely lilac, pale pink and canary yellow make up the color palette for muted shades of spring/summer. It’s the sweetest thing! Experimenting with color? Try these out first before “loud” tones, like oranges and reds.

Show Those Shoulders. Last year, cold-shoulder and off-the-shoulder tops were all the rage. This year, we can expect to see something in between, like the one-shoulder, asymmetrical top, a feminine and flirty silhouette that is ideal for hot days and cool nights. Show off some skin and get a fabulous tan at the same time. It’s a win-win.

Style to the Max. Take your beach look to great lengths in a maxi dress. To-the-floor dresses are flowy, fun to wear and keep you cool in the summer heat.

“Dresses are our summer staples. A lot of people come in here looking for graduation dresses, party dresses or even something to wear to a beach wedding. Whatever you need, you’ll find it here,” Guidice said.

Denim Days. Get the good jeans. Denim is the most versatile fabric, and it always appeals to everyone.

“Denim shorts and skirts are always doing well for us, and are extremely popular among college-aged girls. We are well-stocked for the season,” Guidice said.

Rock Your Mom Bod. Mom jeans are making a serious comeback. Time to rummage through those pants from the ’80s. Faded, high-waist styles paired with a crop top or simple V-neck tee make for an easy, comfortable outfit.

Get Ripped. Deconstructed denim is so cool. The more ripped, the better. These are guaranteed closet faves! Plus, the holes allow for extra ventilation.

Let’s Talk About Sets. Two-piece sets are very in right now. Crop tops and matching pants or shorts are casual-chic options for everyday wear. Try a fully printed set or mix and match a print with any color of your choice.

Nautical by Nature. There’s nothing better than nautical-themed clothing down the shore. From sailor-y stripes to naval uniform-like button-up tops, nautical fashion is timeless. If you’re someone who usually gravitates toward black, opt for navy instead; it has the same flattering effect. Don’t be afraid to try tops or bottoms with cute anchor prints for the ultimate beachy look. Yacht party, anyone?

Meet Prints Charming. Solids are chic, but prints add more personality to your style. Find the one that’s right for you.

Checks, Please! Go for gingham this summer, or “the picnic print,” as Sweeney calls it. Check this off your list as a must-have in your wardrobe; it is flattering on all figures.

“We have this really cute gingham pencil skirt, and I think everyone will love it. Pair it with a solid top, and you’re ready to go,” Sweeney said.

Dot … Dot … Dot. A whole new meaning to trend-spotting. From the 1920s to now, polka dots have never gone out of style. Retro-inspired looks are popping up all over the place, from old-school, pin-up bikinis to vintage high-waist skirts. What goes around comes back around!

Fresh Flower Delivery. The prettiest print for summer? Florals. Seek the sunshine in beautiful blooms. Similar to last year, patterns will either be larger with fewer designs or the opposite, with tiny, all-over prints.

“Florals are always on-trend because they make people happy. Around here, everyone loves the Hawaiian, beachy stuff,” Sweeney said.

WALK THIS WAY: Step into summer with Sofft comfortable wedges. Sweeney swears by them, and her customers are huge fans of this brand. “We can’t wear heels on the beach, so most people prefer wearing flip-flops with their outfits, maybe an occasional bootie, especially if you’re going out. It’s all about comfort down here,” Sweeney said.

Guidice says you can’t go wrong with Havaianas flip-flops. “Customers wear them with every outfit. We’re at the beach, so it just makes sense to sell them.”

FINISHING TOUCHES: Accessorize with jewelry that represents you. At Wink Boutique, long pendants are trending, particularly for the more mature crowd. Younger girls have been loving chokers and mixed-metal statement necklaces by Kole Design, according to Sweeney. Bold colors aren’t appearing just in clothing trends. Jewelry is brighter than ever this year, with chandelier and hoop earrings becoming quite the statement-makers. At Island Gypsy, Alex & Ani jewelry has been a customer favorite since the store opened. The store also carries a great selection from Pura Vida, another one of its popular lines.

“Customers love shopping for jewelry with a cause – any brand that gives back to a charity … that always does extremely well for us,” Guidice said.

BAG THE BARGAINS: Here’s the big deal: Wink Boutique has a permanent sale room! “It’s filled with items available for 40 percent off – a mix of last year’s summer and fall items. So there’s always something for the bargain shopper, too,” Sweeney said. Find everything you love at a fraction of the cost.

Visit Island Gypsy in Beach Haven and Wink Boutique in Surf City or Barnegat Light for all of your summer needs! Start off the season in style.

Learn more here: islandgypsies.com and winkboutiques.com. Be sure to follow @islandgypsies and @winkboutiqueslbi on Instagram to stay updated on the freshest fashion finds. See something you like on Island Gypsy’s feed? Shop directly from the Instagram page. Just call the store at 609-342-0245, place an order over the phone and pay for the shipping fee! There’s still no better experience than shopping in person.

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