Ode to the Perfect Day Dress

Summer 2015
In the Costume Closet
Credits to Zach Iniguez

There are pieces in a girls' closet that she can't let go of. It could be your favorite dinosaur print sweater or a pair of skinny jeans that have been too small for you for a few years but you still squeeze into them because... If you think you can, you can, right?


Summer 2015
For the life of me, I can't seem to get rid of my two favorite day dresses. Why would I get rid of them besides the fact the fabric is insanely worn? The dresses are so versatile! I wear them constantly... at least I used to before I became conscious of their quality. The two dresses featured in this post, are my go to dresses. One of them, seen with the red rain coat, is the lace dress. This cream lace dress has been with me for as long as the other dress, the tribal print dress. The tribal print dress, seen above with the yellow flower, has been my favorite dress for years. I've worn it a million different ways for a million different occasions. It's a fan favorite. I bought it at Forever 21 years and years ago and found the neckline and cut to be flattering (& versatile). For years, I've been looking for a dress to replace this amazing frock. Recently, I bought a dress that was supposed to replace my favorite dress... but it didn't meet the requirements. As a girl who would be labeled as tall, I have the jurisdiction to rant about how hard it is to find dresses that are longer than crotch level. If you buy it a size too big, the chest is too large. If you buy it to fit your chest, the skirt is too short. That's why I love ModCloth. Sure, I'm an affiliate & am compensated for purchases made with the links included in this post, but I'm actually a huge fan of ModCloth. ModCloth is one of the few places I can find dresses that were designed to be longer. ModCloth embraces retro silhouettes, which is something a 1940's lover like me loves. (Don't get me started on The New Look or I'm going to be here all day)! 
Summer 2015 ft. Lace dress under all those accessories
Back tracking to my favorite dresses, my go-to dresses have... gotten shorter and shorter as the years have gone by. Now my only resort to wearing these dresses (in any season) is when they're paired with a pair of black leggings. I've been aware for months, even years, that a replacement needs to come in soon so I can finally retire these worn out frocks. After searching for years and years, I've become a mini expert on dresses. Past trial and error has taught me a lot about what I look for in a day dress. What should you be looking for when looking for your own perfect day dress?

Can we please talk about FABRIC?

The fabric used to make a dress is an important detail to pay mind to. The tribal print dress is 95% polyester and 5% spandex. The spandex, of course, provides stretch. I have never, in my lifetime, encountered such thick but light fabric such as the tribal print dress's fabric. 

The lace dress of course has a lace overlay and a thin... is it called an "underlay"? I have no opinion on the lace dress having two layers. I have many dresses that have two layers. Sometimes it's really nice, other times it's a pain in the butt. The tribal print dress is one layer, and I couldn't imagine it with two... 

But seriously, a frock's fabric is super important. I've been well versed in what wrinkles and what doesn't by my mother. Never buy a 100% cotton dress. It will shrink and it will wrinkle. Rayon is a material that requires hand washing, it also tears easily when wet. Checking fabric is a lot easier to do online than in a store. I mean really, in a store you aren't worried about the fabric. I prefer online shopping (though I'm usually not always satisfied unless I'm ordering from ModCloth). In an interview with People StyleWatch, Jamie Chung said, "I tend to shop online, because when I go into stores, I walk out with a bunch of stuff I don't need. Everything in my closet has a purpose." I take my time and over analyze every item of clothing. I also go through the whole stock of dresses. I kid you not. I recently bought a jumpsuit and dress from Forever 21 and I went through ALL OF THE STOCK. 


And What About Prints?

The monochromatic print on my beloved tribal print dress gives the dress character. I am not personally in love with tribal print... other than that dress, I don't think I own any more tribal print items. The fact the black and white dress's print has given countless outfits a tablespoon of added character, is a huge plus to this already perfect dress. The lace overlay on the lace dress gives any outfit using the dress sweet and girly traits. I like to spice it up with my Marsala leather jacket, adding an unexpected twist to a classic dress. Lace dresses are a great place to start when looking for the Perfect Day Dress. The lace gives the dress personality and texture while adding a solid base to add accessories. 

When you are shopping for dresses there are so many beautiful patterns. It can be hard to check out of the store with a basic black or white dress. I have problems with that too. Every time I get enough money to buy some new clothes I go into the process telling myself I'm going to buy some basics to relieve the over wearing that my favorite basic pieces go through. I end up being entranced by the beautiful prints on ModCloth's website or the trendy styles I see on Forever 21's website.

The dresses I'm including in the next segment of this post are a mixture of novelty prints and classics. You can never go wrong with a black and white print... or any other neutral colored print for that matter. My khaki dress is just as versatile as my cream lace dress when it comes to color. I'm not saying to ban all color from your clothes and leave all the bright hues to your accessories (though I tend to do that constantly). Buying clothes is a serious event and a lot of thought should be put into your purchases so you don't end up wasting money, time, and possibly end up looking like a fashion disaster. I'm not perfect. Just this week I wore a very difficult (in the sense it was a pain in the butt to actually live life in) skirt. (See photo below). I still buy dresses with fun prints, I have a dress with lemons all over it. I haven't been able to wear it because it needs to be altered, but it's still a great print. But, when your closet is filled with novelty prints, outfits become difficult. Though mixing prints is a runway approved trend right now, it's a tricky trend to navigate. When your whole closet is filled with prints, mixing prints might be your only option. When you buy clothes, remember to buy at least one solid colored item or a neutral print. You (and your closet) will thank you later!


January 2015
A Fashion Disaster
Displaying Snapchat-5096561099045015560.jpgBailey, why are you being so weird about your clothes?
Because you buy clothes to wear them for a long time. 


Generally, this is why I stay away from trendy pieces (& trendy stores). When I bought my tribal print dress at Forever 21 about three years ago, I didn't say, "Gee dang, Selena Gomez wore this while on a quick Star-Bee's run with Ashley Benson!" I said, "Wow, I could style this so many ways, and look at that beautiful flare skirt!" 

I understand the celebrity factor in marketing, but personally, I don't care at all if Taylor Swift or Katy Perry wore a certain style. (Yes, I'm aware that Taylor Swift fuels fashion and what is in stores). Personally, I like to pick what I like. In an interview with People StyleWatch in November, Alexa Chung said, "I like to dress in a way that's personal to me, and has a bit of nostalgia. If you're just dressing for all the trends, it lacks that essence."




What are some silhouettes that every girl needs in her wardrobe?

I've taken the time to stalk some beautiful day dresses for you. I'm going to be using dresses all from ModCloth because, honestly, their quality is amazing. I've had dresses of theirs for about three years now, and they haven't worn out yet! Also, the dresses are adorable & it's easy to show the different silhouettes by using specifically their products.

Fit & Flare

Fit & Flare dresses are the death of me. They are absolutely gorgeous and I want to buy almost every one I see!! The tribal print dress is a fit and flare... and this style looks good on everyone. The key notes of a fit and flare dress is that it:

+ Cinches the waist 
+ Poofs out over the hips (think 1950's X dresses)









The shape is all apart of the skirt. Fit and flare dresses can have any style of neckline or bodice, I just saw a beautiful one with a cowl neckline while searching for an example. I like having a simple thick two strapped tank top style on the bodice. The one in the picture below has a sweet heart neckline. I love the print on the fabric of this dress as well as the color. I've been lusting after this particular dress for a while, hehe. 




Shirt Dress

A shirt dress is one of the most casual dresses you can own! I own probably... two that I can think of off the top of my head. They are easy and simple. The shape of a shirt dress can vary... there is not a right way to make a shirt dress. I've seen turtleneck dresses, flannel dresses, button up dresses, and rag line shirt dresses. The possibilities are endless when it comes to casual shirt dresses.









This particular shirt dress reminds me of a Henley. I am obsessed with the color. This dress could be worn on a casual Friday at work or while getting lunch with a friend. Again, shirt dresses are easy and simple while looking more dressed up than your usual Friday attire. This can be worn with tights or leggings in the winter months to add cozy layers. 









Sheath Dress

Sheath dresses are beautiful. They loosely pinch the waist in, showing your shape. They can look slightly dressy while still being comfortable and easy. The shape of a sheath dress can vary, but the following elements stay the same
Lakeside Libations Sheath Dress in Navy
+ The waist comes inwards to create shape
+ The skirt goes outwards from the waist instead of remaining tight like a body conscious dress

The dress to the left is ModCloth's Lakeside Libations Sheath Dress in Navy - $99.99. This beautiful, stately dress is professional enough to be worn by the First Lady of the United States. But it can be yours! Just click the link. 

A Line

Ahh, the classic A Line dress. A Line dresses are very similar to Fit and Flare dress, but if you notice, the whole dress looks like an upper case A. When you see a Fit and Flare dress, you should think of the 1950's, the skirt flares out more than the skirt on an A Line dress. The A Line skirt flares out in a stiff fashion. A fit and flare dress I find flares in a more curved pattern than an A Line skirt. 


This beautiful dress could be your perfect day dress! A Line dresses are insanely flattering. The neutral print is the perfect base for any outfit! I love the tie belt...this ensemble reminds me of a letter tied up with a string. The navy and light tan stripes can be paired with virtually any color... cue the cute accessories! This dress very well might be added to my wishlist as soon as I finishing writing this post... 


Right now you can even receive $20 off of a $100 purchase at ModCloth! Score! Go to ModCloth to check it out!





Tent Dress / Blouson

A tent dress is a fun shape that accentuates your natural shape. A tent shape does not cinch the waist but flares out at the bottom to form the skirt. I own a version of a tent dress which is called a blouson, think of a top that's tucked into a skirt, but it's a dress. That's what a blouson is. Tent dresses or blouson dresses are a great addition to any dress section of your closet.







This dress is absolutely gorgeous. Once it goes on sale, I'm going to try to snap it up. The silhouette will be a new addition to my wardrobe. I can see myself wearing a cardigan with it in the winter with a pair of tights or leggings. In the summer, I'd load up on fun brightly colored jewelry and wear it to work. I love the applique flowers & the lace. This dress feels fresh but also reminds me loosely of the 1920's. Swoon!

Don't forget that ModCloth is offering $20 off a purchase of $100 or more right now! If you want to see more beautiful dresses like the ones featured in this post... Go to ModCloth to check it out! 



Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Importance of Understanding Your Myers-Briggs Personality

Mirror, Mirror on the wall, do these yoga pants make my butt look small?

Most Valuable Blogger: My Experience at the Iowa Summer Journalism Workshop