I first saw this dress whilst working yesterday and given that I was still thinking about it when I woke up this morning, I knew that I had to go and investigate further. The investigation soon turned into a purchase. Let me tell you more….
The Selma jersey dress from Whistles (£125 but there’s still currently 25% off with Grazia) is all that I look for in a day dress – and more. It does have the slightly off putting word “body-con” in its title, which always strikes fear into my heart but whilst it’s fitted, it’s not one that cuts your circulation off, makes you turn blue and fall over.
I realise that I have written about Whistles a lot recently and whilst it’s really strong this season I am objective about brands. When I was working last week we rejected a Whistles dress on the basis that it wasn’t lined and was see through – come on Whistles, £145 for a see through dress? I don’t think so.
So, where to start with this dress? It’s machine washable at 30 degrees and has a wool content of 50% (so that’s the warm box ticked). It has long sleeves, a good length (apart from the maxi dresses it is by far the longest length dress on the Whistles site.) It is also fully lined with a supportive under layer which not only holds you in but also gives a smooth line – and adds warmth, so that’s a double tick on the warmth front.
This dress could be accessorised endlessly, and no doubt will be over the next few months, but for this post I wanted to show it to you in its “naked” state so that you can decide.
From this side shot it’s possible to see the ruching at the waist, which is always a flattering detail, particularly as so many styles are hugely wide and loose this season – which is fine if it’s a jumper and you can counteract it with a fitted skirt, or vice versa, or if you are very tall and can wear heels all day. Otherwise that shape isn’t always so good.
Whilst I know it looks as though I’m doing a “push the boobs out” shot, it’s just for the purpose of showing the exposed side zip, which I also really like as a detail.
Posting a photo of one’s bottom is always a risky manoeuvre, and I must admit to forgetting the VB trick of bum clenching but there we go, it was the best I could manage whilst half way through cooking the dinner so please be gentle with me!
As an alternative, there’s this Topshop dress at £35. It still has the ruching over the front and whilst it’s flatter at the back, a client I was working with yesterday was telling me about the M&S slips she wears which are like a long vest, very fitted and give a smooth line – so one of those may sort out any bra strap/pant line issues.
Topshop also has it in this colour, which may hold more appeal to some. Lovely with bright yellow, hot pink, orange or black, it’s another staple piece.
Me & Em has this double layered twist front jersey dress for £98, which I have included for those who have a curvier bust and who may appreciate the V-neck on this dress.
This Jigsaw dress £69 may appeal to more apple shaped ladies who don’t necessarily want the ruching over the tummy (although don’t discount it, it can work really well) and who instead prefer a looser fit – something which skims rather than clings but which nips back in at the hem to provide a nice silhouette.
The Whistles dress also comes in black – although I haven’t seen it. I can’t wait to play with this dress and to wear it for work, at the weekend and for evenings out – with heels, flats, boots, biker jackets, bright coats, pea coats, statement necklaces, printed scarves and sparkly scarves. In fact I fear that this may be the end of Style Guile as from now on I will be wearing the same dress all winter. It may also be the end of my friendships as I will whiff a little too.