Summer season is underway and that could only mean one thing: We’re finally counting down the days 'til our much-awaited vacation trip! Whether you are headed to see local scenic views or looking forward to the hustle and bustle of different cities around the world, it’s important to have versatile fashion pieces that you can whip out no matter your agenda—and one great example of that is a sarong!
Sarongs have a very rich cultural history in different parts of the world. In Middle Eastern and South Asian countries, sarongs are traditionally used as lower garments for men and women. Often, fabrics with vibrant colors and plaid or checkered patterns are wrapped around the waist and worn to special occasions such as town gatherings, visits to the mosques, and weddings. However, as time passed, many people from these countries started wearing sarongs as casual wear, especially in South Asia. They've become a standard and are now worn every day, often as a wrap skirt. But for the stylish ones, sarongs can be used as a multi-purpose fashion piece!
While sarongs have traditionally started in Middle Eastern, African, and South Asian countries, they have also made their rounds on the Western fashion world for their versatility and rich cultural ties. Well-renowned designers like Chanel and Oscar dela Renta are only a few of the designers who have made their own twists to the beloved sarong. Here are some of the many times sarong made an appearance on the runway!
Here's Chanel riding on the print-on-print trend. The luxury fashion house's take on sarong is a cute add-on to a bright beach outfit, don't you think?
Chanel Spring 2019
This piece from Anna Sui follows the tribal use of the sarong. The cut and the print are very reminiscent of the traditional handwoven cloth usually worn by men and women in Filipino tribes. The frills on the bottom also add texture and fun to this stunning piece!
Anna Sui Spring 2019
Oscar dela Renta
This asymmetrical Oscar dela Renta dress is definitely a modern take on the sarong and it makes for a perfect evening party look! The structure of the dress perfectly embraces and emphasizes the waist while the thigh-high slit elongates the legs.
Oscare dela Renta Spring 2019
How to Wear
The modern approach on sarongs has been interesting, to say the least. It has evolved so much since the beginning of its fashion history. Whether it’s worn as a skirt, as a casual dress, or as a beach cover-up, we can’t help but appreciate its versatility. After all, because of the ever-changing trends in fashion, it is important that we invest in pieces that can we can easily repurpose so we can keep them in our closets and use them for a longer period of time!
There are way too many ways the sarong can be used and worn, but below, we have rounded up the simplest ideas so you can easily and stylishly use your sarong to complete your summer look!
FOR THE BEACH:
The beach is often the most visited destination during the summer and it’s the perfect place to bring those sarongs with you! Whether as cover-ups or even as lounging mats, the right kind of sarong will serve you well!
1. Wear it as a beach skirt.
Make sure to get one that evokes tropical vibes to put you in the right beach-y mood! Tie it in a side-knot and walk around the sand and enjoy the summer heat!
2. Get creative and style it as a dress!
The best thing about sarongs is that it allows you to play around and find which style flatters your body type and suit your needs! You can easily drape it around your body and knot around your nape for an easy DIY sundress, or you can opt to use it like a body wrap!
FOR CASUAL WEAR:
If beautiful sandy beaches are not in your agenda, those sarongs can still be put to good use! They also make for a perfect casual wear.
3. Add a pullover.
Who says this summer piece can only be worn in the sunny season? Sarongs can be cozy, too, if you pair them with bright, chunky sweaters!
4. Dress up a white tee.
Prove your white tee's versatility and your good sense of boho chic style via sarongs. Slip on a pair of slide mules for the ultimate laidback look.
5. Go retro.
Ride the vintage trend and pair your colorful sarong with a makeshift cropped top, which you can do with a shirt knotted halfway towards the navel instead of having it buttoned all the way down.
6. Go for something print-on-print.
Go bold with a print-on-print top paired with a patterned sarong.
7. Cut it short.
Too hot? Opt for the above-the-knee version of the sarong.
8. Take the preppy route.
Take it from Kesley—sarong-inspired skirts can look preppy, too. Simply choose one that comes in a plaid print!
9. Wear it to the office.
Who says sarongs are just for the outdoors? Wrap it around your waist, leave a slit for some accent, and pair it with a white buttondown for a classy indoor outfit!
10. Use it as a top.
Sarongs are versatile pieces, as demonstrated by Heart. They can be worn as a top or even as a gown. Your only limit is your imagination.
Where to Shop
Now that we have given you ideas on how you can use a sarong, it's high time you shop for your own! From picks using traditional and locally-sourced handwoven textile, antique fabrics that date back to the '70s, to more modern variations, we’ve come up with a list of pieces that have caught our attention. These might just be the perfect addition for your summer wardrobe.
These handloomed and handwoven textile design were inspired by nature! Plus, the company that sells these beautiful pieces is a social enterprise that helps out local communities!
Esmeralda skirt, price unavailable, ANTHILL FABRIC GALLERY
Try this beautifully handbeaded skirt for a traditional-meets-modern piece!
Gaddang skirt, price unavailable, FILIPINNA
Silky scarves-turned-sarongs will instantly elevate your looks.
Scarf, P1499, KAMISETA, TriNoma