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Dresses to impress: A shopping and wearing guide

From prom styles to simple shifts, in bold colours or eye-popping prints, Gemma Hayward presents her shopping and wearing guide


As long as it's bright and bold, any colour is deemed fashionable this season, with extra style points earned for pink and orange. If you aren't brave enough to try multicolour blocking, just stick to one hue and team with leather accessories which will blend in rather than clash.


Hot pink and bold stripes might not be the thing you're after, but that doesn't mean you can't have a stylish new dress – classic doesn't have to mean boring. Your summer dress should have a special feature, such as a cute collar, interesting buttons, turn-up sleeves, or just be beautifully cut. It's all in the detail.


From tropical fruits to vivid digital florals and abstract paint splashes, there are all manner of graphics gracing summer fabrics. You don't have to go mad with colour, though; this season's prints are beautiful at their most quiet. Keep to simple, loose-shaped dresses to show off a bold print to maximum effect.


The Fifties prom dress is the most dominant style on the high street. With its full-circle skirt and chic, nipped-in waist, this is among the most forgiving of silhouettes. Then there's the Seventies to think of: collared shirt dresses, hippy-dippy maxis and embroidered smocks are all vintage styles worth revisiting.