Bridgerton-inspired prairie dresses to shop now

(Image credit: 2019 Christian Vierig)

Blame Bridgerton coming back to our screens, or our love for vintage-inspired designers such as Cecilie Bahnsen, DOÊN and The Vampire's Wife, but the prairie dress is undoubtedly one of the most popular trends for the upcoming summer season.

Before we look at SS22's offerings, let's look at the origin of the prairie dress, shall we? Laura Ingalls basically the trend, and I'm only half kidding.

The high neckline, long hem and ruffles were the typical fashion in rural America in the 19th century, no doubt because the fashion was much more modest back then, but also perhaps to protect against the harsh elements for people who had to be outdoors most of the day. The only fancy was the ditzy print, often floral.

It has of course been given a modern update since then, with designers such as Batsheva, Shrimps, Molly Goddard and Brock Collection all featuring the style in their spring collections, this time re-imagined with bold floral prints and colours, whimsical details such as lace, embroidery and grosgrain ribbons - and even shorter hemlines.

How to wear a prairie dress

So how to style the trend? Although it seems like a tricky one, it's not as much of a challenge as you'd think. You basically want to let the dress do all the talking, and keep the rest of your outfit toned down.

I personally will be wearing mine with a paired-down chunky sandal to give it a modern twist, or with a naked sandal if I want to dress it up a bit.

Shop my edit of the best designer and high street prairie dresses below.

Penny Goldstone

Penny Goldstone is the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire, covering everything from catwalk trends to royal fashion and the latest high street and Instagram must-haves.

Penny grew up in France and studied languages and law at the Sorbonne Nouvelle University in Paris before moving to the UK for her MA in multimedia journalism at Bournemouth University. She moved to the UK permanently and has never looked back (though she does go back regularly to stock up on cheese and wine).

Although she's always loved fashion - she used to create scrapbooks of her favourite trends and looks, including Sienna Miller and Kate Moss' boho phase - her first job was at, sourcing the best deals for everything from restaurants to designer sales.

However she quit after two years to follow her true passion, fashion journalism, and after many years of internships and freelance stints at magazines including Red, Cosmopolitan, Stylist and Good Housekeeping, landed her dream job as the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire UK.

Her favourite part of the job is discovering new brands and meeting designers, and travelling the world to attend events and fashion shows. Seeing her first Chanel runway IRL at Paris Fashion Week was a true pinch-me moment.