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We’ve all heard endless talk of hot girl summer. But who’s to say one can’t contain multitudes? I’ve been focusing my efforts on something even more elusive, and arguably groundbreaking for a non-athlete like myself: tennis girl summer. While I have a love for the sport itself, my newfound passion is largely propelled by...the outfits. And when my latest issue of The Paris Review arrived with this piece from Joy Katz, I knew it was time to get serious and become LA’s “best amateur tennis player who’s not that talented but has an awesome attitude and a really great wardrobe.”
Read on for the hottest tennis apparel launches of the season. Whether you’re actually hitting the courts or just want to channel the classic tennis look, you’re sure to find something you absolutely need.
Ciao Lucia, one of my favorite small brands based in LA and inspired by the French Riviera and Amalfi Coast (the essence of what I’m always hoping to embody, both on and off the courts), just launched Ciao Tennis. The new capsule collection is simple and effortlessly chic. I’m fiending for the Tennis Skirt 2 in Ivory, which features delicate asymmetrical red piping and a crisp pleat. Can you tell that tennis skirts are my love language?
Pair it with your favorite crop or tank, or buy the matching Tennis Bra from the collection in red or ivory. Forget technical skill -- it’s all about the finesse of a coordinated set!
Let me sing the praises of this brand! Gil Rodriguez is dedicated to slow fashion, designing elegant basics that are made locally by skilled workers paid a living wage in a safe environment. I’ve been drooling over the Coco Terry Tennis Dress, both in White and Dusty Blue. With a genius back patch pocket, this dress has got you (and your spare ball) covered.
This TNA tennis skirt, quite frankly, blew my mind. I wandered onto the Aritzia website on a whim (read: I was treating myself to a little evening online window shopping) when this skirt found me. And thank god. When I say this is the perfect, flirty tennis skirt -- I mean it.
The amazing thing about this skirt is that it’s almost too short to be practical, but then you remember it’s a SKORT, and the spandex shorts do their job well. You’ll be fully covered on the courts while still feeling completely fabulous. I snagged it in white, but I’d be lying if I said I’m not also perusing the Purple Ash and Plein Air colorways (and a few matching tops, fine). Forget dinner and drinks, I’m looking to book some tennis dates just to show off this number.
From Staud’s latest collaboration with New Balance, shop this Tennis Skort in a classic silhouette with a v-shaped, cotton-candy pastel waistband. To elevate your look -- and make the court your runway, so to speak -- pair it with a coordinated Corset Tank.
Some very cute tennis situations are going on at Splits59, a small LA-based brand (which I know primarily for its equally sleek flared pant situations). I’ve got my eye on the Blake Regular Rise Techflex Skort and matching Bra Top. And if you’d like something a bit more polished, the Steffi Polo completes the look with some good old-fashioned collar action.
By now, we’re all probably a little sick of seeing those “Doing Things” hats. But there’s a reason Outdoor Voices is so ubiquitous: its technical apparel is simply great. I’d be remiss not to include some of the brand’s many tennis-appropriate pieces, like this new flouncy Sport Skort, or the modern One Shoulder Dress (the latter of which might need some testing in-action to screen for potential wardrobe malfunctions).
If you’d like a little more coverage or just a preppier, more classic aesthetic, grab the Sport Dress, which features a collared top (and looks like it could take you smoothly from the courts to the golf course). Lastly, my personal favorite -- one that I wear at least once a week and have owned for years in a two-toned grey colorway -- the Court Skort.
Reformation is creating some great athletic wear. While nearly every brand has some type of active dress (probably spurred by OV’s original Exercise Dress), this Bella Ecomove Active Dress from Ref is in its own league. With an actually defined waist, a torso-hugging bodice, and a sleek v-neck, the dress comes in a few solid colorways and makes the perfect base for a chic tennis look. (Bonus points for styling it with my favorite style of New Balances and some classic striped tennis socks).
Like every good activewear collection, this one from Ref is also making a great skort. The Nina Active Skirt has a similar cut to the OV Court Skort, but the fabric is a bit thinner and has more of a sheen -- both features that have me clicking “Add to Bag” in an icy Mineral colorway.
Entirely Necessary Accessories
Did you really think I would only keep it practical? You’ll definitely also need:
- These earrings from Susan Alexandra
- This hand towel and Nalgene from The Courts
- Something that screams “I play tennis” like this Racquets Hat from Rowing Blazers
- This beaded handbag from Staud’s latest collaboration with New Balance -- for toting your keys and one or two tennis balls
- Practice sun safety with my favorite Supergoop Play to protect your skin (while still catching a perfect glow)