Essential Summer dresses

Summer dresses_older style_the_womens_room_02Dresses are the perfect answer to summer dressing in so many ways. They don’t take too much planning, are usually cool and easy to wear and cover a multitude of sins – if you pick the right shape. They also don’t need to cost an absolute fortune.

So here is our guide to the kind of dress shapes you might want to wear this summer.

Long & Slim

The slimline silhouette is something we are going to see a lot more of over the coming months. Floaty printed maxi dresses are defiantly over (you know the rule – if you can buy them in the supermarket – steer clear) but the above jersey number from Zara is not only flattering, it’s also really comfy and only costs £15.99. What’s not to like?

Tunic Over Trousers

I have always loved the tunic over trousers look. It’s great for those days when you don’t want to bare your lily white legs, or the weather can’t quite make up its mind up.

I love the neckline on the black one from Cos, and the white broderie angalise one from Whistles in the middle is just lovely over a pair of jeans. Or check out the embroidered tunic from Zara for a monochrome ethnic look.

Summer dresses_older style_the_womens_room_03Modern Boho

This is a another look you’re going to see a lot more of. Voluminous, hippy inspired shapes feature shoe string ties and gathered layers and are more or less detail free, apart from maybe some self coloured embroidery. Again stay away from prints.

This blue tunic  and maxi dress are both from Zara and tick all the Modern Boho boxes.

Summer dresses_older style_the_womens_room_04Denim

Denim dresses are so easy to wear and these two are flattering in different ways. The straight up and down one from Zara is still slimline, therefore flattering and the more fitted one from Cos has an almost vintage feel.

Summer dresses_older style_the_womens_room_05Embroidered Kaftan

Finally this brightly coloured kaftan from Zara looks beautiful, but I’m reserving judgement till I see it. My only complaint with High St shopping is that often the fabrics are a disappointment in real life. But fingers crossed, as I can see myself wafting around in this in a ‘Margot Leadbetter meets Jade Jagger’ kind of way on holiday.

Summer dresses_older style_the_womens_room_06



  • Deborah Chowney says:

    I don’t often disagree, but I think all of the dresses look like sacks! If you have any lumps or bumps, these dresses don’t cut it; just look at what is in the charity shops, where ‘fashion’ items are bought and dumped as they are just not flattering.

    As for the comment, if the supermarket stocks it steer clear, it is a bit of a snobby thing to say!

    Just my view, but felt I needed to say something this morning!

  • Sally says:

    Good for the stick thin (and tall) I guess, as is usually the case here. Most of us aren’t that shape unfortunately. Interesting posts but rarely anything I can often relate to, sadly.

  • Sue says:

    Love the denim tunics/frocks & hope to wear one on holiday next week – have just ordered the Toast one Amanda wrote about a while ago. Fingers crossed…Quite fond of wearing Marni sacks, too, although not sure they’re massively flattering.

  • MJ says:

    I’d have to agree with the other posters. These dresses seem to favour the young and lithe. Like a number of women, I look far better in dresses that have some shape to them otherwise the dress tends to make me look large as there is an excess (for me) amount of fabric.

  • Jane says:

    I was being ironic about the supermarket Deborah – I often buy clothes there – but apologies if I offended!

    I honestly think any shape could wear these shapes (I do and I am definitely not tall and thin) but thanks for the comments. Personally I find fitted dresses accentuate my lumps and bumps but everyones different

    J x

  • steffi says:

    Have been wearing the COS denim one to death already! Such a winner over black skinny jeans or with bare legs right now in the heat. Love it.

  • Elaine says:

    I think these dresses will look great on the tall girls but for me they are just shapeless and unflattering. The denim dresses are fine for a UK summer but if you are going to southern European heat then leave them at home…it’s far too hot for denim.

  • Ellen says:

    Love the tunics over trousers set of dresses, especially the embroidered one. Also the denim dresses are nice but no one in NYC is wearing denim with the heat we get here – and that is without one’s own hot flashes.
    As far as big shapeless bodies – I do not do well in the summer heat and have made my own big dresses and tops for years. They are the only thing to keep me cool and in the right drapey fabric are also flattering. I am petite and these probably look better on someone who is model tall, but I get compliments on them and will not give them up. I tell people I am the queen of the big top.
    Diet tip – if you wear big over-sized tops and dresses; the day you wear something fitted, you get tons of comments on all the weight you lost and you didn’t have to do a thing. Ha!

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