If there's one thing I know, it's dresses. My wardrobe is full of them, and I wear them 99.9% of the time. I've always struggled with casual (long-time Who What Wear readers will have repeatedly read about my ongoing struggle with denim—sorry to be a bore!), so easy, good-looking frocks are my most trusted fashion staple.
I have affordable ones that I wear each and every week. I have special, more expensive ones that come out for important occasions or big meetings. I have those in-between, mid-priced options that bridge the gap between casual days and fancy ones. I own styles that are ultra-summery and best for heatwaves and holiday packing, but I've also got a fair number of clever, trans-seasonal styles that can work layered up and with tights in winter or with bare legs and sandals during warmer months. I even have dresses that I've made at home because I can't always find the exact colour, shape or fit I've been dreaming of. I have some It dresses, I suppose—although, I'm always very careful to buy something that really speaks to my personal style and that I know I'll wear even when its cult status has worn off. I may own a lot of frocks, but entry into my wardrobe isn't easy. I'm a pretty discerning customer who values quality and longevity above all else.
On Hannah: Polo Ralph Lauren dress
So who could be better positioned to bring you a very trustworthy edit of the best new-in dresses than a self-confessed frock obsessive with a very picky taste? No one! Here are the loveliest styles I've seen this week…
Shop this week's best new-in dresses:
Dôen Kaira Dress (£307)
I am lucky enough to already own one Dôen dress, and it gets a lot of airtime, so it wouldn't be ludicrous to get another one… right?
Mango Contrasting Satin Dress (£70)
I love that this two-in-one style can be dressed up for a party but also look totally grunge with a pair of lug-sole boots and a heavy coat.
M&S Collection Polka Dot Ruched V-Neck Midi Dress (£40)
This caught my eye while I was in my local M&S buying some lunch, and I keep thinking about how premium it looks.
Reiss Jodie Neutral Knitted Midi Dress (£198)
It's the kind of easy peasy, throw-on dress that I'll get so much wear out of… so long as I don't spill anything on it!
Taller Marmo Ubud Blue One-Shoulder Feather-Trimmed Gown (£1645)
Taller Marmo is THE dreamiest partywear brand, and I aspire to be the kind of woman who wears this to a soirée.
Kitri Luna Animal Print Cotton Velvet Midi Dress (£165)
I'm never upset when leopard print has yet another moment—it just works. This '80s-tinged dress is a real winner and does all the hard work of making an impact for you. Just add gold earrings and go.
Shop last week's best new-in dresses:
Polo Ralph Lauren Cotton Henley Dress (£179)
I have this easy day dress and it's even lovelier IRL. The skirt is really full, the jersey fabric is quite heavy (and so more flattering), and I style it up to have a '70s feel with knee boots and a gold medallion.
Jigsaw Merino Outline Maxi Dress (£220)
The colour! The shape! The contrast red frilly shoulder seam! This is so special and going to look good for many, many winters to come. It's the kind of dress I'd definitely crack out for Christmas Day.
Ghost Wynn Dress (£169)
This tea dress style from Ghost has become a regular fixture in my wardrobe. I have a more summery version in pink and now this iteration, which works well with bare legs and sandals as well as tights and boots.
Jonathan Simkhai Christie Dress (£575)
Ever since I saw a close-up shot of this dress's cut-out chain detail in a lookbook months and months ago, I've been keen to see it drop online and to investigate the whole damn thing neck-to-hem. It doesn't disappoint and feels like a really grown-up way to do the ongoing trend for revealing skin.
Shona Joy Eloise Laced Midi (£268)
Anything in this shade of old-school lingerie pink just gets me every time. This is beautiful.
& Other Stories Off Shoulder Tulle Midi Dress (£175)
If a dress could be an ice breaker, it'd look like this. Just wow.
Na-Kd Long Sleeve Knitted Dress Multicolor (£41)
After seeing my colleague Remi in an amazing (but sold out) checked knit dress from Warehouse, I found this alternative from Scandi high-street brand Na-Kd.
Alémais Print Farrah Cut-Out Dress (£460)
Oroton Black Stretch-Knit Dress (£360)
It's the dramatic sleeves for me!
Mango Ribbed Knit Dress (£36)
Should I just turn this into a ribbed -nit dress gallery? Quite possibly! It's my favourite trend for the season, and there are so many good options out there. Add a big vintage belt to this, and it will look unique.
Celia B Abaca Dress Blue Cotton (£257)
I am head over heels in love with the super-bohemian dresses of Spanish designer Celia B. Every one is a party, with plenty of details, prints, crafty finishes and swishy cuts. This one is my current favourite.
Third Form Third Form Ring Out Slip Dress (£228)
The S/S 22 shows have proven that black cut-out dresses are still going to be popular well into next year, and this one looks really premium. Nice for party season but also great for next summer's holidays.
& Other Stories Buttoned Polo Midi Dress (£75)
The colour! The collar! The ribbed jersey! The waist tie! This amazing high-street dress has everything going for it, in my opinion.
Christopher Esber Triquetra Dress (£700)
This green is just glorious!
COS Roll-Neck Maxi Dress (£69)
I'm at the stage where this gallery should just become a story full of COS dresses. They're THAT good right now.
Zara Long Knit Striped Dress (£60)
This dress is haunting me! Ever since I spotted it in Zara's new-in section a few days ago, I can't stop thinking about it. I don't know if I'll be able to pull of the matching hat, scarf and gloves, but the dress alone with knee boots would be ultra chic.
Massimo Dutti Cashmere Knit Dress (£100)
I have two plain dresses in this shape and wear them on repeat each winter. They look cool worn loosely but also feel a bit sassier with a vintage belt.
River Island Black Ri Studio Tie Neck Smock Maxi Dress (£70)
RI Studio has just landed, and it's full of the kind of throw-on, super-easy pieces you want right now. This is a pretty timeless shape that will look good for many seasons to come.
Sister Jane Agnes Jacquard Midi Dress (£165)
If you have a party, wedding or fancy do coming up, this is the dress to beat!
Chloé Cashmere-Blend Maxi Dress (£1420)
Chloé's new collection has been created by designer Gabriela Hearst, and to say it's going to be popular is an understatement. Expect to see this incredible striped dress (along with the matching bag) during fashion month and on Instagram in no time…
Tove Lexy Dress (£365)
Tove's signature ruched dresses now come in a more autumnal form with long sleeves, slinky fabrics and a slightly shorter hemline. Divine.
Rixo Aoife Dress (£295)
Rixo strikes again! This time, I'm hooked on its autumnal paisley prints, a trend that I think we'll see a lot more of next season.
Co Belted Denim Dress (£515)
There are a couple of great denim dresses in this gallery. Why? Because they're so chic and easy to wear. This cinched-waist style is elegant and will look good forever.
JW Anderson Tie-Front Wool Dress (£535)
It's back! JW Anderson's ultra-popular knitted midi dress has returned for autumn, and in a different colour: cream. So elegant, comfy and easy to re-style with different shoes and boots.
COS Silk Midi Shirt Dress (£135)
From the collar to the swingy back, the big cuffs to the muted blue, everything about this dress just looks SO premium.
Meadows Caster Dress Red Velvet (£195)
I know we are months away from a potential party season, but if I were being super organised, this is the fancy dress I'd get.
Isabel Marant Albi Ruched Printed Silk-Blend Crepe De Chine Midi Dress (£970)
Marant's autumn paisley prints are coming in, and they're lovely. On the runways, they were styled with chunky waist belts and cowboy boots, so you can toughen up these pretty patterns or keep them light and sweet with strappy sandals.
AllSaints Erna Dress (£139)
There's a big movement for modestly cut knitted dresses, and this is a very chic version I'd regret not having when the temps drop.
Christopher Esber Tie-Detailed Cutout Wool and Cashmere-Blend Maxi Dress (£660)
Australian designer Christopher Esber's cut-out waistlines have become something of a phenomenon this year, and his summer pieces have been selling fast. The trend is set to continue well into autumn/winter (no, fashion people don't feel the cold), and I think this cashmere-blend version does the look in a very sophisticated, subtle way.
This story was published at an earlier time and has since been updated. Next up, these are the autumn trends we're planning to wear.
Opening Images: @hannahalmassi
This article originally appeared on Who What Wear
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