There’s no getting around it: if you want a dress that exudes elegance and grace, you want a long dress. The flowing lines of these dresses naturally call to mind visions of balls, galas and memory making occasions. It’s not that a shorter dress can’t call forth these same images, but not with the sophisticated aplomb of a long dress.
So, if you’ve been thinking of slipping into a beautiful long gown for a special event, or even just a long maxi dress for a day on the town, here’s a rundown on how you can do it with ease and elegance. Read on!
Step 1: Consider Your Height
You may have heard that shorter women should not wear long dresses. This is far from the truth. However, you’re below 5’5 feet, you should consider opting for a dress with a less full skirt. A ball gown, for instance, can make shorter women appear squat, and presumably, this isn’t the look you’re going for. Drop-waists can also make more petite women look squat — and if you have shorter legs, proportionately, they will make your legs look even shorter.
Instead, opt for a skirt that starts at your natural waist and stays fairly close to your body. An A-line gown or mermaid gown is great: but a poofy, princess gown is not going to be as flattering.
Another tip: Select a dress with slit to help break up the skirt and create more length in the leg.
Step 2: Consider Your Footwear
Depending on the type of long dress you’re wearing, footwear may or may not be a big issue. For instance, if you are wearing a ball gown that is floor length, you could wear a pair of flip-flops and it’s likely no one would be the wiser. However, if you’re wearing an ankle or floor length dress that’s more body skimming, then your shoes are going to be on display. As such, you need to put some thought into what kind you’ll be wearing.
While you don’t have to wear heels with a long gown, long dresses do generally look better if you employ a little lift — especially if you are on the shorter side. A heel will elongate your legs and make your behind appear perkier. (And who doesn’t love that idea?!)
For those of us who shy away from towering stilettos, opt for a kitten heel, which gives you that extra boost, without putting you at risk of a fractured ankle.
Step 3: Consider Color & Pattern
Color and pattern on long dresses is beautiful! Not all long gowns have to be black, after all. This said, when selecting a dress, keep in mind that you’re going to be wearing a lot of material, and you have to feel comfortable and confident carrying a lot of a single colour or pattern. So, while you might be totally fine wearing a bright yellow tank-top or bubble-gum pink pair of skinny jeans, ask yourself if you’d want to wear this colour, head-to-toe?
Same goes for pattern. A soft floral pattern on a long dress can be breathtaking, but a dress with harsh, geometric, busy patterns could be a little much for your personality (and just for style, in general.)
If you aren’t sure what color or pattern you’d be comfortable wearing, go for a classic crimson, sapphire blue, emerald green, sequin champagne or a pattern like Swiss dot or those delicate florals we mentioned earlier.
Just 3 steps! That’s all it takes to be able to rock a long dress with the confidence and grace this flowing fashion demands.