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Tips for Looking Great in a Dress

The ease of slipping into a dress, adding a few accessories and running out the door makes dresses a must-have wardrobe option for any season. If a dress fits well and flatters your coloring, there is no easier way to get dressed. I’m here to help you choose a dress and determine the few items you’ll need to pair with it in order to create an outstanding outfit.  In this article, I’m sharing my tips for exploring a range of color in your dresses, what fabrics to choose to create the tone, how to choose shoes for your best look, what jewelry to pair with the neckline of the dress, what handbag goes with what type of dress, and finally some ideas for adding an outer piece.  

Explore a range of Color in your dresses.

  • The little black dress is for you if black is truly a flattering color on you. Otherwise choose your best neutral color to create your own version of the LBD like navy blue, dove gray, pewter, taupe, brown, charcoal, French blue.
  • If you have a favorite bold color that looks great on you, wearing it in a solid dress can be a showstopper.
  • If you’re attracted to a red dress but are nervous about the intensity of the color, choose one in coral, tangerine, berry, or rose.

Fabrics create the tone for your dress.

  • Wool crepe or matte jersey fabrics look smooth on the body and don’t wrinkle.  They are classic and can be dressed up or down depending on the day ahead simply by adding accessories.
  • If you fall in love with a linen dress or a silk shantung dress, know that these fabrics will wrinkle quickly.  A linen fabric will be more casual, while a silk shantung will be more dressy.
  • If you want a dress to be more flirty, choose one in chiffon. It will move with you and create fluttering patterns.

The Shoe can add spice or be understated.

  • If your dress is heavily patterned or lacy, keep the shoe simple. Try a nude pump.
  • If a dress feels too feminine for your personal style, tough it up with a knee high boot or a bootie.
  • When wearing a solid colored dress, add personality in a fanciful shoe—brightly colored, metallic, or patterned.

Jewelry choices will depend upon the neckline.

  • A belted dress with a jewel neckline is a great canvas for a statement necklace. Go big!
  • If the neckline is very detailed (ruffled, draped, patterned, or beaded), avoid a necklace and keep the earrings simple; for example, a diamond stud or simple hoop.
  • A wrap dress that creates a deep V-neck can use a dainty chain with a simple pendant. Add bangles on the arm for more impact.

Your dress needs the right Handbag.

  • If your dress isn’t a work dress, don’t wear a workbag.
  • If your dress is super simple, go for an exciting bag. Consider one with studs, sequins, chains, or patterns.
  • Always keep a clutch handy in one of your neutral colors. If your dress or jewelry is getting the most attention, your handbag can stay in the background.

Don’t forget the Outer Layer.

  • A fine cashmere or silk cardigan sweater is an easy addition to a sleeveless dress.
  • A silk blazer that repeats the line of the dress adds polish for evening occasions.
  • A trench coat that has sheen to it, or a silk trench coat, is a great all-around choice for many dresses.

Would a dress be a good choice in your wardrobe? Need some help to find just the right ones?  Let me help you shop for the dresses that you’ll love wearing.  We can work together in person or through my virtual styling services.  Please contact Marion at 831-625-2000 or mlgellatly@powerful-presence.com for more details.

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