Zac Posen's Guide to Summer Dressing

Zac Posen's Guide to Summer Dressing (Getty Images)

Zac Posen is having quite the summer. In between debuting his resort collection and dressing a slew of celebrities, he found the time to design a $1.5 million 24-carat gold gown to celebrate the launch of Magnum ice cream's Magnum Gold bar (and whip up a less spendy version for Rent the Runway), team up with David's Bridal on an ongoing collection of wedding dresses, and even sit down with us to chat about his must-haves for the season!

A few of Zac's favorite summer pieces (onesies are his everything), his thoughts on "pajama glamour," and the death of the "tribalite" look, below!

StyleBistro: What are you really into this season?

Zac Posen: I think it’s a big floral season. I like florals on black backdrops. It pops. I think in our Zac Zac Posen collection there are amazing, cute summer pieces.
Zac Posen's Guide to Summer Dressing (Z Spoke "Heyday" print dress, $550 at

StyleBistro: Any favorites?

Zac Posen: I think that our cross-body clutch, the mini Loren, is a great summer clutch. It’s the right size where you can carry your iPhone, your credit cards, your lipstick. It can look really chic, it looks good in an urban casual environment.
Zac Posen's Guide to Summer Dressing The Loren isn't available online yet, but here's another one of Zac's favorite clutches, the Shirley. ($395 at

StyleBistro: You always look so polished. How summery will you go? I can’t picture you wearing denim shorts or sandals. Or endorsing them.

Zac Posen: I will never wear cutoffs. I have no desire to see men in New York City with denim cutoffs on. I don’t need to see men’s interpretation of Jessica Simpson. I don’t like men in stilettos. If you’re going to go there then create a real character for yourself and go into being a cross dresser. That thing with men in high heels and cutoffs and beards is really disturbing to me.

(Ed note: What thing? Is there anyone out there whose thing this is? And can we meet you?)

StyleBistro: What would your recommendation be for a woman who would normally reach for jeans and a tank top, but who wants to look more put-together when it’s really ridiculously hot out?

Zac Posen: Sunglasses can make it. A great hat. A large-brimmed hat can make that look good. A great wedge is good in the summer. And obviously, in New York City in the summer, a really good raincoat. Onesies are in again, which is really great.

StyleBistro: What are you over right now?

Zac Posen: I think we’ve moved a little bit outside what I call the tribalite look in terms of street fashion. Sort of what I think of as the M.I.A. look. I think that’s evolved a little bit. I think that there’s a preppier undertone somehow, with the kids on the street that’s interesting. I also think a great alternative for flip-flops are loafers. I also love, instead of loafers on the beach, I always wear Brooks Brothers tuxedo slippers.
Zac Posen's Guide to Summer Dressing (Brooks Brothers)

StyleBistro: Slippers on the beach?

Zac Posen:  I'm always into pajama glamour. I think Marc Jacobs does pajama glamour really well. I think it’s very translatable to wear great pajamas and wear that. I think it’s very casual and easy. I do have a casual side. I love t-shirts. I just don’t buy designer t-shirts.

StyleBistro: What kind of t-shirts do you buy?

Zac Posen: I wear my old Zac Zac Posen t-shirts. And my old Z Spoke t-shirts that I’ve collected. I love beautiful cottons that thin out and get transparent. I wear A.P.C. t-shirts. That’s slightly getting into the more designer realm. I wear a crewneck. I love long-sleeve t-shirts on men and women. I love wearing my undershirts in Japanese ribbing because it reminds me of 1915 men’s bathing suits. Those were made out of wool. I have a few of them, they’re really uncomfortable.

StyleBistro: Do you wear them?

Zac Posen: I have not worn them past the age of 25. I only wore antique clothing in my teenage years. Antique clothing mixed with Century21.

StyleBistro: Where did you wear them?

Zac Posen: They looked really cool on Coney Island.

StyleBistro: Ahh that's so great! Can we talk a little bit about the gold dress you designed for Magnum? I know you did a replica for Rent the Runway, and it’s so glamorous. Where do you see a woman wearing that?

Zac Posen: A very special occasion, I think. Or at home for herself. If I were a woman, I would probably rent it and do a photo shoot at home for myself.
Zac Posen's Guide to Summer Dressing (Rent the Runway)

How would you accessorize it?

Zac Posen: I think it almost is the jewelry piece. When you’re dealing with sequins and paillettes, you don’t really want to add too much onto it. I personally would wear hair down with it, to tone it down. A great comfortable shoe is sort of all you need for that and you’re good to go. And you’re good as gold.

Would you lounge around your house in a gold gown? What would you rent on Netflix? What sort of snacks would you eat? We're thinking bagel bites on a fancy platter.

I'm the Senior Associate Editor at StyleBistro. Follow me: Google
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