Heatwave Issues: Do We/Don’t We Buy A New Summer Dress?

Let’s talk about clothes, we haven’t mentioned shopping for fashion for an age here on TWR, which rather reflects where we are on buying stuff currently (although Jane’s recent trip to NYC shows there is hope for shopaholics in the homeware category…).

Summer dresses are a conundrum, as I’ve mentioned in previous years. We only usually get to wear them for three weeks before it’s too cold and they go back in the wardrobe until next year, when you can easily bore of them. But it looks like we’re going to be hot for a bit, so a sartorial hot-weather fix suddenly looks appealing. But much like Mrs May’s Brexit deal, its a time-sensitive decisions. Act quickly or not at all.

Summer dress buying should go like this:

  • For a quick hit of temperature-perfect, on-the-nose-fashionable summer dresses, buy something from Zara, Cos or Arket, all currently on sale. Zara have a glorious collection of printed floral dresses and kaftans which seem to start at around £19.00, but only go up to a medium. I trawled the Kensington store for a large – any large- in a dress this weekend and failed to find a thing. Arket and COS are great if you want the perfect cornflower blue/navy/neutral shirt dress to walk around Tuscany in, and sizing is much more generous.

  • For a dress that might work for longer than the heatwave, you might like to invest in quality. I am currently contemplating a really lovely Joseph dress in cucumber-cool blue and white, (£276 from £395) designed with a pretty cowl neck, generous shaping and artful front belt detail which elevates the look and is easy to wear if you have menopausal mid-rift curves. It also comes in a lovely rice-pudding vanilla colourway – in cotton poplin, I’m considering plimsoles in a matching shade for maximum Sara Berman channelling –  (£146 from £365). Both available online from Matches
  • Quite spendy (£516 from £1290, I know, I know) but in a glorious, elegantly coloured-up print and with maximum longevity in terms of wearability, is this lovely Quenna silk shirt dress by Erdem. Currently available up to a size 16, which is friendlier than Zara. I just love Erdem, but prefer this more easy-fit tie waist (or not) style to his body-skimming shapes, although those are lovely to look at. Also from Matches (and yes, I might have been trawling its website when I should have been working).

Enjoy the heatwave, all! What are you wearing?


  • Sue says:

    Summer isn’t my favourite time to buy clothes, to be honest. But, this year (nearly) all my clothes just seemed wrong, which is happening much more frequently now I am in my fifties. So I have bought a couple of dresses – black linen from Justine Tabak and a black shift thing from Toast and I’ve been wearing my (previous) Whistles Lola dresses. The Joseph dress in vanilla looks lovely but I think it looks like it would suit a taller person best – Matches have the BEST sales and their customer service/despatch is far superior to NAP. Don’t know what’s going on with NAP at the moment…

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