Boho-Chic Wardrobe Essentials

Let’s chat today about a few wardrobe essentials for the woman who isn’t a classic dresser.  Last week I shared wardrobe essentials that are always in style and a reader asked me to share what the equivalents would be for her because she enjoys a colorful, flowy bohemian look. I love to add touches of it to my classic style and many women do too, so here are a few boho-chic wardrobe essentials.



There are no strict rules for how to create the boho style, and that’s the whole point. Bohemian or boho-chic style is an unconventional, artistic, and creative way to dress.

maxi skirts and dresses


Dresses and long skirts in flowing fabrics are a mainstay of many boho-chic wardrobes. Look for natural fibers in solids or prints. Interesting designs like uneven hemlines, fringe, ruffles, and prints bump the fun quotient up and look distinctive.



woman wearing head scarf


Whether you’re stacking on bracelets or layering a flowy vest over palazzo pants, loose layers are an important part of the bohemian style. Boho-chic is anything but body-conscious so it often conceals the line of your silhouette. Oversized garments are common and comfort is key.


blonde blogger wearing pink kimono with blue jeans and white wedge sandals

Loose and airy kimonos are a great way for any woman can add a bohemian look to their wardrobe. They’re available at all price points so there’s no need to break the bank. These are often printed in intricate detail and colorful patterns and are one of the most easily recognizable boho-chic essentials.



Flowy fabrics

Often in neutral colors and natural fabrics, the bohemian look is long, loose, and flowing. There’s nothing constricting or overly fitted here as the boho gal loves to feel at ease in her clothing. Palazzo pants, long loose vests, tunic tops, and loose dresses worn over leggings or pants give a definite boho vibe.



printed fabrics


Brightly colored, busy, and cheerful patterns are common but if your taste runs to soft, earth-toned neutrals, there’s plenty of those too. Ethnic prints like tribal, paisley, ikat, or kilim are a fabulous look and very popular. Embroidery can be intricate or simple, colorful or subtle, and one of the most popular boho-chic wardrobe essentials.



Artistic Accessories

boho chic earrings

Handmade, artistic, and ethnic jewelry is a great way to add a boho touch. Layering and stacking bracelets is a fun way to add a distinctive look to the simplest outfit.


Non-structured handbags


The boho-inspired handbag is not hard or overly structured. It’s often woven leather, embroidered or fabric. Here are some fun ones…

Are you a fan of boho-chic or do you dabble the way I do?

Thanks for reading and remember to wear what makes you feel confident.


  1. Mary Divine says:

    I alway enjoy your posts. Some of the jackets and skirts do not come it a petite size so alterations could be expensive. If I really like something I will have it altered. I am 5’2″ and 125 and I have a real Womans body not a petite body. I usually will purchase jackets and sweater blazers in the regular size and have them altered, I do like Talbots because they have all sizes for all women. I do like the boho styles. I like to dress modern but not trendy.

  2. Yes…a boho gal here! I realized that I have always been boho, back to the ’70’s, but tried to conform to the conservative business style for years, though never feeling good about myself dressed that way. The 60’s, age that is 😉 has taught me to literally ‘go with the flow’! Finally I’m buying clothes and dressing for freedom and comfort, still stylish I think. Thanks for the article… glad to hear I’m not alone in boho dressing.

  3. When I was younger during the 60’s boho was popular. I liked it but leaned more toward ethnic fabrics. When I buy a boho style I always return it. Just doesn’t seem to fit my vibe any more. Kinda a sad about that. But can’t force it.
    I love the Farm Rio fabrics shown today. Gorgeous and creative! I might wear something that bold in a small piece. Would be great in a beach coverup.

  4. This was a great post! I like the boho look but have trouble making it work for my small frame. Please continue to feature boho options and suggestions. Thanks!

    1. I certainly will! I love touches if it too.

  5. Kinda like this boho design. Especially the blue and white outfit with jeans and linen navy tee and of course the hobo bag. I say “yes” to this great style.

  6. Though my style is classic I definitely dabble in boho when desiring something more casual, as particularly appreciate the artisan/handcrafted vibe both in garments and accessories. -Brenda-

  7. I love the Boho look and always wondered how to pull it off successfully. My 9-5 attire is very conservative but i’m going to give this a try for weekends. Thanks for the inspiration!

    1. A little goes a long way and easily mixes with other styles

  8. I like a little boho but too overboard. I really liked the accessories you showed.

  9. Those blue Raybans are already on their way to me!!

    1. Aren’t they great?? Now, if I could only master contacts I would own them too:)

  10. The artistic, feminine part of me would like to go full-tilt boho, but if I’m honest, head-to-toe boho can start looking a little “crazy-lady” (on me). A touch…or a suggestion…of it works pretty well: an unstructured bag, an artsy print top, a bit of embroidery/fringe/appliqué….interesting details.
    I own scarves, but rarely wear them. There’s the “fuss-factor” where I’m fiddling with them all day. The same with kimonos…too much lightweight, flowing fabric…they can add pounds and seem to need frequent rearranging.
    My summer wardrobe definitely leans boho. In the wintertime, it trends toward a Talbots-y vibe.

    1. I love the boho touches with my classic pieces more in the summer as well. It’s got a lighthearted feel that feels right in warm weather. I see others do full-on boho but it takes restraint to get the look right. The true bohemian dresser is an artist.

  11. I am your boho girl a good part of the time: I love color, flowing clothes, embroidery, kimonos….but, I do know when I think I need to pull back…
    I had two very Southern grandmothers who taught the standards (no white after Labor Day, velvet only between Halloween and Valentine’s Day, etc.), but they were more flexible than my mom who, at 91, still coordinates EVERYTHING, can’t mix patterns, and has VERY definate opinions about what is appropriate 🤣🤣🤣

  12. Beth Daley says:

    Hi where did you get your duster you are wearing in this post?

    1. This was from Anthropologie last spring

      1. Jennifer, I have this kimono from Anthropology and I just LOVE it. I bought it after seeing you wear it so beautifully on your blog some time ago. The colors and everything about it make me so happy when I wear it!

  13. Boho over 50 seems to add a certain sparkle to dressing. One can still be classic with boho hints. I adore maxi skirts; however, they all have a slim waist (no gathers), skim the hips and then flare out. Or the same upper with an asymmetrical him. I just picked up (Nordstrom Rack) a denim maxi skirt that fits like a pencil skirt… so comfortable, great with all types of flats and tops! Call me crazy, it seems that over 50-55, it’s easy to own classic staples and throw on 1 item or shoes to give it a different vibe. aka: my Nordstrom Rack black moto jacket (not too many zippers, just a nice edge with straight jeans, silk blouse and boots). Yeah, haven’t shopped in years and hit the jackpot for basics at the Rack!

    1. Diane, where do you find your skirts? I’ve been searching for something that doesn’t have the ubiquitous tiers!

      1. Hi Sarah,

        With the exception of the denim skirt, this year is a big NO! Someone recently asked me the same question. Resale items on ebay and Threadup are good contenders, just look for new with or without tags and on Threadup read the description (Boden, Vince Camuto, Lou & Grey). In the past, Boden had very nice slim design (about 2 years ago started going to thinner material), this year they added pockets and huge waistband. Sometimes Talbots have slim upper with a high-low hem (had a nice navy polka dot one last year, a floral is in the sale category now). Lou & Grey (Loft) has nice knit maxi’s. Vince Camuto is another option. I’ve even purchased the Vince Camuto jersey sundress (sleeveless, v neck) and removed the top! 4-H sewing to the rescue. My rules are to steer clear of drawstrings, elastic small casing (like a 3″ band) and no gathers at top! Novica is another option if you open to “creative” colors and natural fabrics. FYI, I am 5’7 with long legs, the mentioned brands fit perfectly.

    2. You scored!! That maxi sounds like just what I have been hoping to find. You are certainly not crazy, Diane…it does add fun to an outfit.

      1. Thanks Diane, great information! Fun post today, Jennifer!

  14. Janice in Ky says:

    Love that first outfit, just send it over. Only problem at 5’ I think the sweater would overwhelm me, no petite’s. All the test said I’m a classic/trendy. I think the first outfit could be trendy or Bo-ho. Also like the blue maxi skirt, could wear with every think except the sweater from first outfit. And of course your maxi dress you took to Mexico.
    Would love to see you in the first outfit, betting you could shop your closet for most everything but the sweater.

    1. Many kimonos are too long for me at 5’4″ so I know what you mean but that one is shorter.

  15. Elizabeth A Daley says:

    Great Post! Where is the Kimono from that you are wearing? I love this look.

    1. I bought it at Anthropologie last spring

  16. Boho is my preferred style. It’s very me. I don’t wear boho every day, but it’s my go-to. Love everything about it.

  17. I’m a Boho dabbler……a little boho goes a long way on me, but I love the color and artistry of most boho styling.

    1. Me too. The uniqueness and artistry really appeals to me

  18. When I see boho styles, it seems more unstructured and allows a person’s personality to shine! It includes hair styles and makeup choices too. I love this look and find it so authentic to so many individuals. I only dabble with this style, maybe with a boho type necklace. But, I could easily be enticed to add more boho styles to my wardrobe. Maybe it’s a free spirit that I admire….

    1. I really admire this style but know my limits. I do feel free spirited when I wear my kimono

  19. This was a fun post, maybe you can do one for each personality type. I’m not a boho type, but I do appreciate bold accessories and can see adding some boho that way.

    1. That’s a great idea, Yvonne! I’ll plan those

  20. I lean towards Boho but often can’t find items in that style that work with my budget and body. So thanks for the tips! Love the linen tee – which can be classic or boho.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *