What to Wear in London

April 15, 2024

London in Spring Outfit

As the founder of En Route to Rêverie, I feel so lucky that traveling to London is actually part of my job! If you follow me on Instagram, you know packing for these trips is practically an Olympic event and planning my outfits is often a highlight for me!

I love planning my daily outfits — I take into account what activities I have planned, the weather, how I can mix and match pieces, and of course the vibe of London’s fashion scene. I always get questions about how to dress in London (verses Paris or New York City), so I’m excited to share a round up of outfit ideas for every season. I find that London fashion tends to lean a bit more buttoned-up, classic, and polished so I tend to stick to neutral color palettes, timeless silhouettes, and layers. 

What to Wear in London

I can’t talk about packing for London without acknowledging the city’s famous and fickle weather. Like New York City, London experiences all four seasons so it’s important to take into account the weather and temperature when deciding what to wear.

One item I always ensure makes my London packing list (regardless of the season) is a good packable umbrella. I can’t count how many times the forecast has promised clear skies only to be met with rain. In London especially, I find it’s always best to be prepared. 

What to Wear in London in Spring

Striped Cardigan

Stripes are always in my suitcase for Spring! Stripes are timeless and are a great way to easily add visual interest to an outfit. A lightweight striped cardigan or knit jacket layered over a t-shirt or dress is the perfect layer for cool Spring days. The knit jacket I’m wearing above is from one of my favorite British brands, Boden. I also love the J.Crew Emilie striped sweater jacket and reach for it often! I size up one size in both styles.

For layering underneath, I swear by the M.M. LaFleur Leslie t-shirt. It’s looks more elegant than your average tee and has held up well for me over the years, no stretching or bunching after a few wears! It travels really well, too – aka it doesn’t wrinkle easily. I wear a size M in it.

Comfortable sneakers are a must for traveling to London. I’m loving these Veja sneakers which are a new addition to my wardrobe. 

Leather Jacket

A leather jacket is my go-to evening layer for chilly Spring nights. I think it looks so chic draped over a silky dress for drinks and dinner out. I’ve had this beloved J.McLaughlin leather jacket for years – and this leather moto jacket is very similar, it’s become a true wardrobe staple.

Related: What to Wear with a Leather Jacket

Long Sleeve Dress

For my Spring trips to London I often pack a long sleeve dress since it’s not quite warm enough for bare arms. While the above dress is sold out, it’s available in a shorter version that I also own and love. I sized up two sizes given the button-front.

I packed this long sleeve shirtdress from Reformation for my recent trip to London. It comes in black and white and was the perfect weight. I recommend sizing up at least one size.

Lightweight Jacket and Trousers

If you’re looking for an easy outfit formula for what to wear in London in Spring, this is it! This Ba&sh Paris Meredith Jacket is easily of my favorite lightweight, cropped lady jackets in my wardrobe. This gorgeous ecru color lends itself perfectly to Spring in London and looks effortlessly chic. I have styled it oh so many ways over the years of owning it. I wear a size M.

Here I’ve paired it with my trusty J.Crew trousers that I swear by, especially for travel. They wash and pack beautifully, I’ve even worn them on the plane — they’re that good! I love these two versatile pieces styled together, but also love that they can be paired with other items in my suitcase. I sized up to an 8 in these trousers. 

Related: How to Style Trousers

Cropped Tweed Jacket and Midi Dress

Another way I love to style the ba&sh cropped tweed jacket is over a midi dress, plus the all white/cream monochromatic look always makes me feel like Elizabeth James from The Parent Trap.

When I’m in London, I love to lean into crisp, tailored looks and I think this outfit fits the bill. The STAUD Wells Dress is a personal favorite of mine, and while it’s too chilly in Spring to wear it with bare shoulders I think this is a beautiful way to style it and really highlights the full skirt. I recommend sizing up in the style. I wear an 8.

I recently shared my packing list for London in the Spring which focuses on pretty feminine dresses, light layers, and springtime jackets for cooler days.

Denim and Ballet Flats

I recently shared my best shoes for traveling in Europe and it’s no surprise that ballet flats made the list. I always pack a pair of ballet flats for London, especially for warmer temps in the Spring. I style them with everything from dresses to denim. Because my denim collection is extensive, I wrote a whole post about my favorite and most-worn pairs of jeans!

If you’re looking for an affordable lookalike for the Chanel ballet flats (one of my best investments), I can recommend these for their comfortability. In terms of style, these are also similar.

Related: Ballet Flats Outfit Ideas

What to Wear in London in Summer

White Dress with Woven Accessories  

For my Summer trips to London I always pack at least one gorgeous white dress. While this exact style is sold out, I own this and this cotton eyelet dress. I opted to style mine with a woven bag and woven hat to complete the look!

If you’re looking for a woven bag that won’t break the bank, I always find Mango’s selection to be good.

Floral Midi Dress

A floral dress is a must-pack for London in the Summer. Style with flats or sandals for the daytime and add a heel for the evening! Sadly this washable silk dress from M.M. LaFleur is nearly sold out, but I think Reformation has a lovely selection of floral midi dresses. 

Don’t forget a pair of chic sunglasses for London in Summer, these are my current favorites.

Off-the-Shoulder Dress

I absolutely love this flirty dress for cocktails and dinner out in London. It’s actually designed as little cap sleeves with a sweetheart neckline, but I styled mine off-the-shoulder. While it’s not available in the polka dot pattern this year, it comes in a few other color and pattern options! I sized up to an 8 in it.

Tailored Dress

Another favorite British retailer, Me + Em makes beautiful tailored dresses that look right at home during Summer in London. This shirtdress with fringe details looks similar to the cap sleeve version I’m wearing above. It would be perfect to wear to afternoon tea!

Linen Dress

While it’s rarely sweltering in London (although remember — many places don’t have AC!), I still find myself reaching for a linen dress or two when I pack for London in the Summer.

Linen is breezy and lightweight, and while it does wrinkle I always keep a mini bottle of this wrinkle spray on me. Style with sneakers or minimalist sandals (no flip flops unless you want to be easily IDed as a tourist) depending on the day’s activities.

What to Wear in London in Fall

Striped Sweater and Jeans

Skinny jeans, wide leg jeans, dark jeans, black jeans – no matter what kind of jean you prefer, I always recommend packing a couple pairs of jeans for Fall in London. They’re a great outfit base, especially for chilly days. You can shop My Favorite and Most-Worn Jeans for reliable styles.

Pair with a striped sweater for an easy, classic London look. La Ligne makes some of my favorite striped sweaters, at least one always seems to make its way into my suitcase. 

These ankle boots are so comfortable, I’ve worn them all over Europe! You can use code WHIMSY15 for 15% off your purchase of Inez shoes.

Blazer and Tee

You can’t go wrong with classic blazer and t-shirt combo! Blazers are practically my uniform throughout the Fall- they’re the perfect in-between layer for days when you need coverage but not a full winter coat.

Favorite blazer of mine include the Sézane Michele Jacket which has a slightly longer fit, the M.M. LaFleur O’Hara Blazer which I own it in more colors and patterns than I can count, and the J.Crew Regent Blazer which has been a closet staple of mine for years.

I also love Veronica Beard’s blazers and think they’re worth the investment.

Cashmere Sweater

When the weather starts to turn brisk in Fall, it’s time to break out a cozy cashmere sweater. The one I’m wearing above is the Jenni Kayne Cashmere Fisherman Hoodie and I love the casual yet polished way it looks styled under a wrap coat. Wear this for a day of sightseeing in London when you want to be warm and comfortable but still put together. If you’re looking for more high quality sweaters, read my Jenni Kayne review!

I’m wearing my favorite ankle boots from Inez. You can use code WHIMSY15 for 15% off your purchase of Inez shoes.

Tweed Jacket

Tweed jackets are my go-to with jeans, especially when I’m traveling. It’s an easy outfit formula that I know I will feel comfortable and confident in. I find most of my tweed jackets at Mango, Veronica Beard, and Ba&sh Paris

Trench Coat

For the Spring and Fall I always ensure I pack a trench coat when I travel to London. It’s the perfect outfit topper, plus you never quite know what weather you’ll be dealt. This style is a classic from J.Crew as is this one from Sézane, both of which I own and have loved for years.  

What to Wear in London in Winter

Wool Wrap Coat

For London in Winter I swear by this belted wrap coat from & Other Stories. This winter coat is so good I now own it in multiple colors and I never travel to London in the Winter without it. It’s warm, well-constructed, and is the perfect outer layer for cold days. I love how chic it looks with the cinched waist! Be sure to size down. I am wearing a S.

While I wouldn’t say I typically pack light, I do always try to wear my heaviest winter coat on the plane to save space in my suitcase.

Quilted Jacket and Beanie

Check the weather before you travel because extra chilly days in London call for a beanie! This was my go-to beanie during my trip to London in December. Even if I didn’t wear it all day, I kept it in my bag for easy access if I needed extra warmth. I prefer a black hat, scarf, and gloves so I can easily mix and match.

This oversized quilted jacket is one of my favorites and has ample room for layering underneath, plus it’s quite packable.

Sequin Skirt and Black Heels

Holiday season is my favorite time of year to visit London! The city is glowing and the decorations are utterly magical. For the holidays in London, you simply must have a bit of sparkle! A sequin skirt pairs perfectly with a classic black wool sweater and heels.

I swear by the Sarah Flint Perfect Pumps, they’re my go-to party shoe for when I know I’m going to be on my feet. I love that Sarah Flint offers these in various heel heights (I’m wearing the 85) with their signature wide toe box, extra padding, and shaped insole. So good, I own them in five colors!

Related: What to See in London during Christmas

Trousers and Sneakers

Rainy and overcast Winter days in London (of which there are many!) call for an outfit that will keep you cozy and warm while still looking chic. Black trousers are one of the most versatile items you can pack. During the day I pair them with a sneaker, like these Converse, and then at night I switch out the shoe for something a bit dressier.

London outfit Matching Set MmLafleur

Matching Set + Knee High Boots

I think a matching set is alway such an effortless way to look put together. You can shop the above one here.

Cold Winter days in London call for a bit of added warmth, so I always try to pack a pair of knee high boots. The Loeffler Randall knee high boots were an investment but I absolutely love them. I had my cobbler stretch them a bit to make them roomier for my calves. I love how these boots look with a monochromatic navy outfit, and they also work well with dresses.

Another favorite pair is from Sarah Flint – their riding boots are seen above.

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I hope you find this post helpful for your travels to London! Let me know in the Comments below. 

Heading to London? Book En Route to Rêverie with me and get customized recommendations based on your travel preferences to make your next trip the best one yet.

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