For many of us, the LBD is our go-to for events and dressy parties—Christmas, New Years, networking events, wine tastings—but hang forgotten in our closets the rest of the time. Since I don’t have a budget for clothes that can only be worn once or twice a year, I like my LBDs to be as versatile as my skinny jeans.
If you don’t have a black dress but you’d like to get one, look for the following to make sure your dress is versatile and easy to wear:
Fit: Look for simple sheath or body-skimming (not necessarily tight) styles that can be worn with cardigans and blazers, or topped with sweaters and t-shirts for super casual wear. Dresses that hit around the knee (just above, if you’re petite!) are super flattering and can be worn with flats and heels and boots.
Fabric: Skip the lace, ruffles, and flounce if you want a dress you can wear to brunch and the boardroom, too. Cotton and jersey are easy to wear, easy to wash, and simple.
I have five black dresses (don’t even), including one wrap dress and one sweater dress. While I love them all, the sweater dress is pretty stand-alone and the wrap dress can be paired with a blazer and that’s about it. So, with that in mind, I took out my other three black dresses—a fit and flare, a body-conscious, and a maxi dress—and here’s how I wear ‘em.
**Please forgive the image quality, I think my iPhone is iBusted. Also, I should probably clean my mirror.**
Beginning with my favourite dress EVER, my body-conscious dress has a lace back. I bought it for a dressy event I attended two Christmases ago, and it hung in my closet unloved for a long ass time. Then one day, I threw a blazer over it and it was gold (well, actually it was black…). Since then, I’ve worn it with my denim jacket, sneakers, boots, heels, flats, blazers, cardigans, and I’ve thrown t-shirts on top to really dress it down.
My next LBD, a fit-and-flare, I picked up for an office event. It doesn’t look great with a cardigan over it, but I love wearing a button-down under it for a fun, librarian-esque look! It’s a go-to when I can’t decide what I feel like wearing, and the fit makes me feel super glamorous. While I almost exclusively wear this to work, it's great for weddings, or grabbing drinks with the girls or Mr. Hockey Coach!
Last—but not least—is my black maxi. There is literally no place I wouldn’t wear it, and almost nothing I wouldn’t wear it with. I top it with denim jackets, sweaters, sweatshirts, leather jackets, cardigans, and t-shirts. I am a huge fan of maxi dresses (check back soon for more on that!), and this one is no exception. It's easy to dress up for work or going out, and dressing it down is a breeze.
Want some other ways to wear your little black dress?
Wear a button-down under a strapless dress, like I did with my fit-and-flare. It’s unexpected and chic.
Dress down your LBD with athletic pieces—think sneakers (I picked Chuck Taylors!) and a windbreaker or zip-up sweatshirt.
Accessorize with funky jewellery, scarves, and shoes.
Cover slim-strap or open back dresses with a blazer, pair with office-smart shoes, and accessories to take your dress-up dress to work.
Oh, hello! Fancy meeting you here. While we're talking dresses, have you seen these gorgeous prom dresses? They almost make me wish I was going to prom, but luckily Sadie's aunt is responsible for this line that makes me pretty glad I'm a grown-ass woman (sometimes).
I almost don't dare say it, but we're rapidly approaching swimsuit season. If shopping for a new bathing suit is the last thing on your list of favourite to-dos, I have good news: A British-Columbia based company is tackling everyone's least favourite pastime with a genius new line of swimwear, individualized to each woman's body.
Sound too good to be true? Don't believe me? Check it out for yourself.
A Nettle's Tale founder, Julia Church, was no stranger to the dreaded swimsuit-shopping trip when she sewed a replica of her worn-out, favourite suit. After her roommate tried the suit on, Church thought it would be great to make custom swimsuits for all the women in her life.
Materials are locally sourced and manufactured in Vancouver and designed and modeled by real Canadian women, with real bodies — sans photoshopping and hypersexualization. Um, yes please! Ten per cent of the profit from each suit sold is donated to a charitable cause chosen by the woman who inspired the design.
Not surprisingly, much like this project, the crowd-funding campaign has taken off — with almost 500 per cent of the original goal raised to date.
Check out all of the styles right here, and then come back and tell me what you think! The Carli is my favourite (and might soon belong to me, if we're being honest...)