Summer Dress-Buying Tips

Summer is the perfect time to embrace your feminine side and don a dress. But with so many styles, figuring out what to shop for and wear can get frustrating. To help you find the perfect fashionable frock this summer, we put together a simple dress-buying guide.

chic A-line frock

A-line

A-line dresses, which come in at the waist and then flare slightly out from the waist to the hemline, are fun summer frocks that suit a variety of settings (from casual weddings to the office).

Best for: Anyone with a boyish figure or who wants to conceal the tummy area. The A-line dress creates shape for those who lack curves but also gives the illusion of a smaller waist.

Wear with: Flat, strappy sandals, cropped cardigan (for an air conditioned office or chilly night) and classic but understated accessories.

Our pick: Step out in style in a dress that truly screams summer. We love the pretty watercolor floral pattern on this chic A-line frock (modcloth.com, $75).

bold, blue silk shift dress

Shift

These often-sleeveless dresses are versatile and multi-seasonal. While they are untailored at the waist, the design is still streamlined enough to look polished.

Best for: Anyone who wants to camouflage hips or tummy.

Wear with: T-strap heels, chandelier earrings and envelope clutch.

Our pick: Put together an elegant summer look in this bold, blue silk shift dress (topshop.com, $130).

boho-chic silk maxi dress

Maxi

These summer-ready floor-skimming frocks come in a wide variety of patterns and colors, making them one of the easiest pieces to wear.

Best for: Almost anyone, but if you’re petite, they can make you look even smaller.

Wear with: Gladiator sandals, metallic cuff or armload of skinny silver bangles and oversize straw tote.

Our pick: Be a summer stunner in this boho-chic silk maxi dress in earthy purple and brown tie-dye pattern (shoptrendboutique.com, $259).

black cotton shirt dress

Shirt

These simple but stylish dresses offer a masculine twist on the eternally feminine dress. Kind of like an extra-long button down shirt, these dresses often have a belted waist and come in both short and long sleeves.

Best for: Anyone who wants a little extra coverage.

Wear with: Ballet or pointed toe flats and a small cross body bag.

Our pick: We love the effortless elegance of this black cotton shirt dress with short sleeves and a braided belted waist (revolveclothing.com, $144).

Sheath

Simple and easy to wear, the sheath dress fits close to the body and cinches slightly at the waist.

Best for: Pretty much anyone! The classic shape means this is a dress that never goes out of style and most people can wear.

Wear with: Wedge sandals, statement necklace and cropped denim jacket.

Our pick: Add this smart, sophisticated sheath dress to your summer wardrobe in versatile off-white (bananarepublic.com, $150).

sophisticated sheath dress

Watch: How to wear the print dress

A print dress is a new season wardrobe must-have! Just add a textured clutch and a metallic cuff for instant day-to-night glamour.

More summer style

Resort-chic: 3 Must-have outfits to pack
Sandal up: 5 Strappy sandals for summer
Splash into these sexy swimsuits for summer

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Comments

Comments on "Pick the best summer dress for your body type"

Tiera June 17, 2013 | 11:04 AM

where do i find that a-lined dress?

Kaylee June 26, 2012 | 6:33 PM

I love the look of the shirt dress. It works perfectly for me to wear to work during the summer when things around the office get a little more casual. I havent found brands I love, Any suggestions?

Emma June 26, 2012 | 4:29 PM

Dresses are my summer go to ensemble! They are always cute and great for the warmer weather. I love that the maxi can be worn on any body type, and can move seamlessly from day to night wear. Especially in the summer when you don't know what the day holds and you have no time constraint, it is great to wear something that is so versatile.

Erica June 26, 2012 | 2:14 PM

I love wearing dresses! My favorite styles are definitely A-Line and Shift. They're comfy and cute and girly. So perfect for summer!

Yi-Fan June 26, 2012 | 10:46 AM

Now I am trying to get use to wearing a dress.I like the A-line the most.

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