Friday, May 7

The One Detail That Will Make Your Summer Dresses Stand Out


The top 20% of our bodies have been getting a whole lot of airtime over the last 12 months, and thanks to Zoom, it’s become hard to imagine our colleagues as anything other than two-dimensional beings that cease to exist below the shoulders. Really, now that those of us who have been able to work from home are making our first tentative steps out, it’s about time that the back had its moment in the spotlight. Thanks to this season’s open-back-dress offering, I think we’re in for a real treat.

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I would argue that there’s nothing quite as sultry as an open-back dress, whether it’s a mere hint via a keyhole cut-out or a dramatic, tailbone-grazing drop. It’s a wow factor in its most elegant form. COS’s sellout linen dress with its low-cut back has returned for another season, now coming in terracotta, navy and bright orange. It’s the sort of dress that will look just as good in the city with sliders and sunnies as it will over a bikini for that summer staycation. Who What Wear’s Hannah Almassi swears by & Other Stories’ lace-back dress, which she bought in brown. “There are multiple panels that act as a kind of casual corset around the waist and provide a nice flare in the skirt, and the tie-up back is dainty yet secure—secure enough to go sans bra when you still have an ample bosom, anyway!” she explains.  At the other end of the market is Loup Charmant’s triangle-back mini, Bassike’s oh-so-chic tiered midi dress, and let’s not forget Asceno’s Capri linen midi dress, the throw-on style that has been making the rounds of Instagram. Oh, and I can’t not mention Rixo’s jaw-droppingly beautiful Anatasia dress, which will be perfect for any weddings you have coming up this summer (just wait till you see the bow-tie back). Scroll down to see and shop my full edit of statement-back dresses for the summer months. 

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Hanna Stefansson in last year’s sellout COS linen dress. Shop this year’s iteration below. 

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A cut-out knit dress is the ideal in-between-seasons style. Just add cage sandals and hoop earrings.

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Who What Wear’s Hannah Almassi swears by & Other Stories’ puff-sleeve dress.

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