Thursday, October 2, 2008

Smock dresses - Dresses For Real Women Part FOUR

For the last five seasons the fashion world has had a love affair with the smock dress, whether because of their comfort and versatility, or simply the fact that women can cover the majority of their figure flaws in one fell swoop.

This figure-friendly smock style will cover all manner or lumps and bumps. Once the domain of pregnant women, if you don’t want to look as if you are expecting then go for a light, fluid fabric that doesn’t add bulk to your shape.
Balance out this short dress with platform shoes and chunky heels. Older women can still get away with this style if they team it with leggings or jeans. Avoid frilly, voluminous puffy and leg-of-mutton type sleeves if you are more mature, to lessen the "baby doll" effect.

Juniors' Mossimo Supply Co. Flutter-Sleeve Smocked Dress - AT TARGET $19.99

Mossimo® Black: Smocked Top Dress - Brown/ White/ Aqua - AT TARGET $19.59 (clearance)

Temperley London
Sabina smock dress
Was $795 Now $532.65

Double layered smock dress
Was $2,410 Now $1,807.50
But don't only use my examples here as your only reference. My time is limited today, but I assure you there are several great styles available for you in a smock. Long sleeves, short sleeves, long length, knee length, anything!

How to Wear a Smock Dress
This beautiful dress style will always make you more volumniuois, but the secret is in the cut and what you wear it with. Choose a fluid fabric and wear it at the right length for a classy and not brassy effect. For volume control, team it with some great accessories, and choose a plain color – not prints.

Wearing a Smock Dress at Forty-Something

If you're in your twenties, you don’t have to worry about pumping up the volume. You can get away with anything: the shortest lengths, the most girlie of floral prints and the puffiest of sleeves.
But for our beautiful older gals,in order to look good in a smock, keep the length just above (or on the knee); anything lower is frumpy. Don’t avoid smock dresses simply because you don't have the legs to wear them. The beauty of the smock is that it can be worn over pants, leggings or jeans.
Invest in a light-fluid fabric which will hang well and will not add extra bulk to your shape. Avoid details like bows, ruffles and volumnous, puffy sleeves. Go for a darker, single-block colors, which you can accessorize to the hilt with this season’s fashionably chunky necklaces or wide belts. For inspiration, think Anne Hathaway in The Devil Wears Prada.
Add a great bag or shoes for your own signature style, but avoid spiky or low-heels. Wedges are best, to give some bulk.

Three Reasons Why Women Have a Soft Spot for Smocks

1. Comfort
Given the choice of loose and concealing or clingy and revealing, the majority of women with a few too many figure flaws will go for the volumnous smock.
This is an opportunity for pregnant women the world over to actually feel fashionable and right-on-trend.
Comfortable and cool, the smock dress wins hands-down when it comes to an easy-to-wear, throw-it-on dress.

For a more girlie look, wear a smock dress over bare legs, opaques or ribbed-tights. Chunky heels are essential to give it balance, either in the form of wedges or platforms, or this year’s fashion-forward ankle boots.
Wear it as a tunic over a pair of leggings or narrow-legged jeans or pants.
For eveningwear, choose a just-above or on-the-knee metallic smock, or one that is embellished with gemstones around the neck or hemline.
For cooler days, wear it over a sweater or T-shirt.

3. Body Camouflage
A smock covers the tummy and skims the hips and so hides a multitude of sins.
Pear-shaped women can work the look well, as they have a slim torso but a bigger butt, which is hidden beneath the volume.
Choose a style which is fitted below the bustline if you have a large bust. This means the volume falls from under the bust, rather than the neckline and gives less of an impression of a maternity dress.

Rules For Wearing a Smock Dress

To reduce the volume, cinch in the waist with a wide belt.
Balance is the key. Very short styles need voluminous sleeves. Older women should go for a long-length and less bulk around the sleeves.
Unless you are in your twenties, then avoid girlie prints. Go for a plain color or metallic, which is more flattering.
Wear it with chunky high heels, to balance out the volume, or cute and feminine ballet flats or this season’s gladiator sandals. High heels are a must if layering with pants or jeans.
If you want to be really fashion-forward, then team a smock with ankle-boots.

How to Fall in Love With The Smock Dress

If you are still not convinced that a smock dress is for you, then browse, which has a wide range of styles and cuts. Don’t be afraid to experiment, as when you find a flattering cut for you, it is a safe bet that with the comfort, camouflage and versatility of a smock dress, it will fast become one of your favorite outfits.