My love affair with summer dresses goes way back, there is simply no better piece of fuss-free clothing in my mind, especially after a season of layering. You don’t need to worry about coordinating complicated outfits, just throw it on, add a pair of shoes and a designer handbag – and you’re done.
The beauty of the humble dress, is that it doesn’t need to be fussy, especially if you’re not a dress person to begin with. In fact, some of this season’s biggest trends are around paired-back, minimalist dressing, and I’ve found the very best summer dresses to suit all tastes.
Summer dresses: trends
This season, as we slowly ease out of lockdown, summer fashion trends are all about the feel-good factor, and that translates into over-the-top tulle ballgowns, acid-hued florals, ribbon detailing, feel-good colours and puff sleeves galore, as seen at the likes of Molly Goddard, Simone Rocha and Rodarte.
But don’t be fooled into thinking it’s just about making a statement, Jacquemus, Victoria beckham and Khaite all proved that the most minimal monochrome styles can bring just as much joy, especially with a discreetly placed cut-out detail.
Length-wise, while midi dresses are still king, hemlines are getting a little longer in a nostalgic nod to the noughties, so do think about investing in a straight length maxi dress. Even better when styles with chunky flip flops (The Row have conveniently just re-issued last summer’s sell-out Ginza sandals).
Whatever your fancy, I’ve cherry picked best summer dresses from my favourite designers and high street stores so that you don’t have to go on a hunt to find what works for you.
Add a pop of colour to your summer wardrobe with this block midi dress, best worn with platform flip flops.
This fluid dress is sewn from a blend of Tencel© lyocell and cotton. A long, wide style detailed with slim rouleau straps and an elasticated neckline at front. The back neckline is U-shaped with a knot detail.
Matteau's breezy design philosophy is embraced by the whisper-weight voile making up this red mini dress. It's crafted from organic cotton blended with silk and shaped with gathers at the neckline and cuffs, then falls to a loose shape which is defined by the slender waist tie.
Channel the season’s beautiful bohemian mood in this printed maxi dress. It comes accented with a tie-detail neckline, long sleeves and a gathered waist.
This flowing orange dress is a tangerine dream.
This figure-defining, easy-to-wear and infinitely comfortable style is ready for a summer of fun.
This pistachio-hued, pleated dress is designed from a sustainable, recycled fabric, the all over soft pleats and slit at the back create a sense of movement.
Faithfull The Brand's dress is decorated with artfully colorful checks. It's been locally made in Bali from breathable cotton-poplin and is cut in a a tiered silhouette.
Team this cute polka dot dress with some chunky dad trainers.
This beige SIR. Sofia silk midi dress is cut for a loose fit and has a panelled hem, square neckline, shoulder straps, concealed zip fastening and an all-over floral print pattern.
Upon your grand return to the office, this belted Brunello Cucinelli shirt dress is the one to wear – it perfectly bridges the gap between comfortable and aspirational dressing.
Featuring the brand's signature tie back detail and on-trend cowl neck, the Riviera is the perfect nod to 90s chic and the answer to your day to night dress dilemmas. It's made from 100% recycled satin polyester.