Okay ARE YOU READY? Please bear in mind that this post is not about “event” dressing, because I have as little a clue as you do about event dressing. No-one invites me to events, thank god, and if they did I wouldn’t go.

This is just about the summer dresses that you need, for day or evening.

I have a revolutionary suggestion, which….. is that….  *hides under table* you only need 2 dresses.

That’s right! 2.

Both black. Or possibly one black, one navy.

Let me explain!

A capsule wardrobe is made up of things that look fine, that will always look fine, that always work, that you will always feel like wearing while attending to errands, work, a young family and all that terrifying shit.

Many of you don’t own these capsule items because you think they are “boring” – a mindset I hope I am nagging you out of. No clothes are boring, there are only boring ways of wearing them.

And you can pretty much always feel like wearing a black dress. Black in summer is fine, as is navy. You don’t have to go about looking like the Chelsea Flower show just because it’s sunny.

I’m not saying you’re only allowed to wear black and navy dresses in summer (some readers are getting agitated that I am saying throw all your clothes away and ONLY wear capsule things – not at all!)

What I am saying is that if you struggle to find summer dresses, if you open your wardrobe to see mulchy jersey things in indistinct and ugly patterns from H&M 9 years ago, inappropriate floral tea mini dresses or jazzy emerald maxi dresses but nothing to take the kids to the fucking park in when it is 31C outside, just consider adding one or two BUT NO MORE of the following dresses to your repertoire.

Fashion people want you in summer to wear giant broderie anglaise things, or an all-white midi dress or something in bright yellow with massive sleeves- and I say to that: what, sorry… with two children? Having to do two trips on the tube with a buggy then later standing about in the kitchen making kids tea? You’re having a laugh aren’t you.

Those sorts of dresses – the broderie, the yellow, the huge sleeves – are for holidays and this is not the holiday capsule wardrobe post.

Other Stories are absolutely on fire with great black dresses at the moment – a shame I won’t get any commission from these but you come first.

There’s this one

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This one – though you have to make sure you own and can wear some kind of sturdy bra with this one, can’t really tell from here.

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This one

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Who was asking about breastfeeding? You can do it in this dress.

This one – looks like a bra will be alright with this and the tie-back is really cute.

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This one

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Shit I hope I’ve matched up the pictures to the links properly.

This is my navy one from ASOS

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Having massively slagged off Boden to everyone, this one actually looks handy.


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I like this one from Marks and Spencer 

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The broderie in the one above says “summer” to me. Tan belt, leather sandals, smart gold accessories. NICE.

If you felt like taking a gamble, this one from Theory via Net a Porter looks great and is on sale – only a large left, but you want this loose anyway. Just an idea. It will be beautiful quality.

Theory from Net:

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Whichever one you get make damned sure you can wear a solid bra underneath (just don’t even consider anything with spaghetti straps unless you are flat chested, in which case I am dying with envy). Also do not buy a maxi dress because it will just get caught up in things and you will kind of splash through it as you walk and it will just piss you off.

Right, now you’re looking at these dresses going “but, but, but, but,” BUT I am TELLING you that with the correct detailing you will look like an absolute boss in any possible daytime situation.

These black dresses, with your smart espadrilles and a clutch bag and either your black blazer or leather jacket with tons of jewellery, you could go out for the evening in any of the many, many very smart restaurants that I have been to.* For real. Listen to me

No-one will think “she always wears that black dress” because I once wore the same  black dress at night for two years and had a genuine argument with a friend who said “but I’ve SEEN you wearing other dresses,” and I said “No, it’s always this one.”

And please don’t say that black washes you out. That’s a myth, black doesn’t “wash” anyone out. Stick some fake tan on. Black is awesome.



*Except maybe the Louis XV in Monte Carlo, but you don’t want to go there anyway.