How to wear the little black dress
Monday 30 June 2008
"You can wear black at any time," said Christian Dior in 1954. "You can wear it at any age. You may wear it for almost any occasion; a 'little black frock' is essential to a woman's wardrobe."
Dior's advice is particularly timely now, as the LBD was all over the autumn/winter catwalks, with film noir and femme-fatale inspired styles smouldering like a lit cigarette.
Strike the right balance between classic styles and next season's details, and you can buy a dress now that will look chic for years. Fresh motifs include large pattern lace – as seen at Prada, one-shoulder styles and draping at Lanvin and austere, moulded silhouettes at Balenciaga; while crisp ruffles and tiers still look modern.
For evening Reiss has a good selection of LBDs, including a strapless cocktail pencil dress with a frilled front, and Warehouse have a slinky jersey dress with one strap.
For the day a plain jersey dress in a slightly Grecian style (try Topshop) is a comfy, timeless option that provides the perfect foil to retro belts and chunky costume jewellery – next season's statement accessory.
In more practical terms, make sure you use a deodorant that doesn't leave white marks, choose a fabric that appears expensive, and look for garments that are lined – particularly in real silk. Approach dresses in high-shine satin with caution, as they can look unflattering and a bit cheap.
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