The midi dress is not only undeniably stylish and in vogue, but it’s also undeniably one of the hardest dress styles for many women to pull off. The main reason for this is the length: falling mid-calf, the midi dress can often make women who aren’t supermodel tall look frumpy. Obviously, this isn’t the look most of us are going for when we dress ourselves each day.
Take heart: as easy as it is to slip into the fringes of frumpy in a midi dress, it’s equally easy to steer clear of the pitfalls of this style. Read on to find out how to style your midi for sartorial success, every time.
Alamour the Label designs include a size guide, which will tell you the height of the model. This should help you assess where the dress will fall on you.
Again, midi’s are designed to be worn on taller women — think 5’6 or taller. If you are shorter than this, your midi may look more like an ankle or even floor length dress. If you are on the shorter side in the fashion world (and on the normal side in the rest of the world: the average woman is 5’4), then you have a few options:
1) Buy a knee length dress. You may be short enough that a knee-length dress will actually fall to midi-length on you. So try on a few, and see where the hemline rests.
2) Shop Petites. There’s a whole section for more diminutive damsels, so check it out. Midis are everywhere, remember, so you’re likely to find a stellar dress in just the right size.
3) Has it altered? Tailors and seamstresses are severely underutilized and under-recognized for the magic they can work on clothing. If you find a midi you love that falls a little too long, take it to a tailor or seamstress and make it work. After all, fashion fortune smiles on the bold…
Stand Tall: Shoes for Midis
By falling mid-calf, midis run across your leg at a wider part. This means that midis can make just about anyone look a little stumpier and compressed than they really are. This also means that heels look best with midis since they add length to your legs.
Before you sob at the prospect of having to wear stilettos every time you want to do a midi, know that even a little heel can go a long way to elongate your stems. A kitten heel will do the trick. What’s more, pumps aren’t your only option. Wedges work, as do boots with heels. Ankle boots look particularly stellar with midi dresses, since they add some weight to your feet, while still showing some leg.
In general, it’s always best to wear coats and jackets that are shorter than the hemline of your pants, dress, or skirt — and this style guideline definitely holds true to the midi. Wearing an overcoat that’s longer than your dress can really weigh you down, further adding to a frumpy look.
Solid suggestions? Instead, opt for waist-length blazers, bomber jackets, jean jackets or leather jackets. These cuts all draw the eye up, eliminating that stumpy style.
If you can keep these three principles in mind when you’re looking for a midi, you can rock the look, without the frump. Happy shopping!