The secret to dressing well is keeping it simple. OK, actually that is just the secret to my style, but hey, let’s overgeneralize for effect. During the cold months my uniform is a black turtleneck sweater and jeans. I’ll wear the occasional skirt or dress for speaking engagements, meetings or Church. But most days I’m channeling the simple (boring) style that Steve Jobs was so fond of.
When Spring comes I toss aside my jeans and black turtlenecks and fall in love with dresses all over again. I think classic dresses are so wearable for everyday life and am asked often, “Alli, why are you so dressed up?” Dresses can be perfectly casual and easy to wear everyday and today is a perfect day to debunk two common myths about dresses. Ready? Let’s do it!
1) Dresses are expensive. I can’t just go buy a closet full of dresses!
Beautiful dresses can be super pricey and I’m learning to save up for a new well tailored dress and treat myself each Summer. As long as I can keep the boys’ sticky ice cream covered fingers from using the skirt as a napkin, they will last forever. But buying dresses doesn’t have to break the budget.
I first fell in love with dresses when I lived in Narragansett, RI. Across the bridge on Newport Island was where I learned that thrift stores were treasure boxes. I found everything from Yves Saint Laurent to the Gap. When we lived outside Miami I was obsessed with finding Lily Pulitzer dresses at my local Goodwill. Even here in Nashville, I can almost always find cute dresses that someone bought and decided to give away. Sure, I smell like mothballs after I shop, but I leave with an armload of dresses and never pay more than 5$ each. I keep planning on getting some of my favorite dresses made in multiple fabrics, but life keeps getting in the way. One day…
2) I’m too active to wear dresses. I would ruin them with stains or flash people all day long. And who would have them dry cleaned all the time?
Ok, I may get raked over the coals for this one, but I never dry clean. I wash everything in those mesh lingerie bags in my washer. I never ever ever ever put any dresses in the dryer, I’m not that crazy. So far, I’ve never ruined a dress by washing it.
I understand being worried about ruining dresses. That is where the joy of thrifting comes in. When you buy your dress for $3, you never worry about it. I wear expensive dresses that I picked up for a few dollars everywhere. It’s way fun.
You know how little girls wear bloomers under their dresses? That inspired me to wear dresses in a more functional way. I almost never wear a dress without some bike shorts or shorts I bought when I was shopping for the workouts I was going to start doing. (yeah, let’s not talk about that…) If I need to do a cartwheel, climb a tree or change a tire- I won’t flash anyone because I’m wearing shorts. Now sure, I don’t do any of those things, but if I needed to, I’m prepared.
Below are some of my favorite dresses I have my eye on. I’m already picturing them being worm while doing cartwheels and changing a tire. Enjoy!
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What do you think? Dresses as everyday wear or special occasions? I’d love to hear what you have to say!
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