Themed Brunch Wish List: Light Academia Aesthetic

July 26, 2022

One of the most fun parts about hosting brunch is choosing a theme or style. In this series, we’ll be exploring popular aesthetics and how you can apply them to your brunch parties!

The feeling of light academia lends itself perfectly to your book club brunch, or any gathering of intellectual discussion over good food.. Here’s how you can bring the preppy yet romantic style of the light academia aesthetic to your next event.

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What is Light Academia?

This aesthetic is defined by the classical university style of liberal arts, like literature, music, and history. Think of light-colored linen fabrics and warm neutrals, a picnic on the grass on a sunny day with a poetry reading, or the white marble sculptures and structure of an Ivy Leagues campus.

Light academia has a romantic feel, both in the traditional and more modern definitions. It leans vintage, a little outdoorsy, and has a slight air of distinction. Honestly, the word “light” itself describes the aesthetic so well that I keep wanting to just say it over and over. Light neutrals, light fabric, the feeling of lightness.

Capture the Mood of Light Academia

Colors and Patterns

  • Cream, beige, and other warm neutrals
  • Natural light, sunshine
  • Dim and desaturated tones
  • Gingham, houndstooth, plaid


  • Classical: Debussy, Chopin, Tchaikovsky
  • Modern: The Smiths, Lana Del Rey, Billie Holliday, Frank Sinatra

Dress Code

  • Preppy meets business casual, in light neutral tones
  • Linen shirts, button-ups, sweater vests, cardigans and blouses
  • Long skirts, slacks, and linen shorts

For your next brunch, capture the romantic feeling of light academia with literary motifs, linen fabrics, and vintage aesthetics!

Light Academia Tablescape Wish List

Before your guests arrive, be sure to decorate and set the table. Lean into the motifs of the light academia aesthetic when selecting your table linens, dishes, centerpieces, and accessories. Some interesting themes you can focus on include:

  • Vintage-style board and card games, photographs, and ephemera
  • Literary references, pages from books, and old sheet music
  • Low-saturation and warm tones from white and cream to beige and gold
  • Intricate designs reminiscent of classical art and architecture styles

Light Academia Brunch Menu

When it comes to the food choices, you can still stay on theme! Lean into the colors and styles with these delicious dishes, sure to please your light academia crowd. Flavors like lemon, coffee, vanilla and white chocolate are perfect for sweet selections. When it comes to savory options, fluffy egg salad cream puffs are just the right texture.


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