6 ways to (re)wear a dress

A dress makes a great, simple outfit choice; we’re not worrying about what to match with what, and we can choose lengths, styles and fits to suit us. They can work for just about every occasion, with shirt dresses for laid back casual days, to dressier alternatives for more formal events. 

The problem is, many of us see the dresses in our wardrobe as one dimensional. If, like some, you’re fond of the ‘I’ve worn that, I can’t wear it again excuse” then this is for you. Here at White Rose, we’ve put together 6 dress styling hacks so you can get the most out of your wear.

There are so many ways you can re-work key pieces again and again. In fact re-wearing your clothes is actually one of the latest, and hottest, fashion trends, with many celebrities and influencers becoming more concerned for the environment, showcasing blazers, dresses, skirts and trousers in a new light.

Check out influencers @notbuyingnew and @enbrogue who routinely share photos of vintage jumpers and charity shop sourced dresses under the hashtags #capsulewardrobe, #slowstyle and #progressnotperfection 

Building a capsule wardrobe full of long-lasting versatile pieces that all go together makes it easy to update for the new season with clever styling, the right layering and relevant accessories. Even better, opting for pre-owned clothes and therefore extending the lifespan of the product can make your consumption even more sustainable. 

1. Keep it casual 

Whether you’re meeting friends, or running errands, dresses can project casual vibes just as well your favourite jean and t-shirt combo. The easiest way to do this is by slipping a basic top underneath. If you’ve got a printed, or patterned dress then pick out an accent colour, if you’re sporting a plain colour, go for a contrast. 

This look is great if you’re looking for a look that will last you into the evening, this way you can always remove the underlayer and pop it in your handbag. Don’t be scared to mix and match your dress with trainers or converse style shoes, this will automatically soften your look for more of a daytime appeal. 

2. Turn up the sass 

If you’re wanting to show off your dress for an evening out, as well as updating your footwear and accessory options you could try experimenting with other garments in your wardrobe. Depending on the dress you’ve got in mind, you can place a dressier top over, turning your dress into a skirt. 

If you’ve got a tight fitted dress you could even try folding it over and placing a skirt over the top, giving your look a new dimension. 

When it comes to making your dress more dressy, it’s all about the footwear and accessories. A cute pair of heels partnered with a matching purse will automatically uplift your look. 

3. Work it 

That dress you wore out at the weekend can totally be transformed into office chic. Simply add a fitted blazer over the top, or a smart shirt underneath, then finish off with a pair of polished brogues.

Be conscious of length, if your dress sits above the knee we would recommend a pair of opaque tights or leggings. 

4. Layer up 

You can wear the same dress all year round if you get your layering game right, we’re talking coats, jackets, scarves, jewellery, and knitwear

You can even showcase your favourite spaghetti strap or sleeveless dress during the winter by throwing a turtleneck underneath. A cream turtleneck makes the perfect partner to a corduroy overall dress in the fall, while a chunky pair of tights, and a jumper helps every dress fight off those winter chills. 

Top tip: If you love cropped jumpers but never know how to style them without baring all, a dress is a great undergarment that keeps you covered.

5. Accessorise 

When it comes to accessorising your options are endless but there are a few key pointers you should bear in mind: 

  • Large or oversized can be distracting and draw attention from you and your outfit. Choose a small to medium-sized bag to properly showcase your outfit.
  • When accessorising plain outfits - the bolder the better.
  • Take note of your neckline before choosing jewellery - a dress that bares a fair amount of chest requires a necklace that follows the shape of the neckline. 
  • Don’t over accessorise and create a balanced look - if you go big on your neckline, opt for smaller earrings.
  • Adding your own appliques or embroidery can take your outfit to the next level. 

Clothes take excessive amounts of water to produce, not to mention the fuel burned in transportation, or the amount of waste that ends up in landfill when the latest trend is declared out of fashion. 

Doing your bit literally couldn’t be easier; rework, and re-wear preloved clothes. Here’s to making more considerate choices with White Rose!

To volunteer, donate clothes or just get in touch with the White Rose team, call 01159 472 472 or email support@whiteroseshop.co.uk!

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