Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Frock around the Clock; There's Nothing like a Summer Dress for Putting Separates in the Shade. the High Street Is Awash with Them " and There Are Styles to Suit Every Figure and Purse

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Frock around the Clock; There's Nothing like a Summer Dress for Putting Separates in the Shade. the High Street Is Awash with Them " and There Are Styles to Suit Every Figure and Purse

Article excerpt

Byline: DAVID HAYES;KAREN DACRE

SHIFT dresses, slip dresses, shirt dresses, wrap dresses, Fifties dresses, baby-doll dresses, strapless dresses; there is no getting away from the fact that frocks of every conceivable shape and style are firmly back in fashion.

Even committed Juicy Couture tracksuit devotee Coleen McLoughlin has been tempted into a dress this season - and by none other than supermarket fashion favourite George at Asda's new "Must Have" range.

With the incredible choice in the shops, finding something that is right for you can be mind-boggling. There are a few basic guidelines to help you avoid heaving armfuls of unsuitable dresses into the changing room.

Shirt dresses look best on more boyish figures, as extra curves can cause pulling and gaping in all the wrong places. Wrap dresses with flattering V-shaped necklines look good on the more voluptuous - but just make sure that clingy jersey fabrics don't show off illfitting underwear. Full-skirted Fifties styles show off the traditional British pear shape - that's small waist, heavy hips - to its best advantage. And the baby-doll? Best left to the very young, paired with jeans or packed in a suitcase as a glamorous beach cover-up.

Many styles are light and breezy this summer, held up with only the finest of shoestring straps; perhaps not the best for anyone who hasn't spent the winter months busily toning their upper arms to perfection. Hunt out the few dresses with sleeves - such as H&M's gathered-sleeve purple floral print dress for o29.99 - if you feel you need a little extra coverage.

There are plenty of great dresses available for under o100 - and some, such as Coleen's shirt dress from George - cost as little as o10.

Standout styles include online retailer Asos's great three-quarter-length sleeve, popperfronted shirt dress - very much like Stella McCartney's but only o25; Miss Selfridge's perfect-for-the-beach empire-line ochre cotton dress, a snip at o38, and Laura Ashley's splashy rose-print Fifties tea dress, perfectly dressed up for o80. …

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