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Help! Dress needed for NY wedding and engagement party and I feel like a drag queen in everything.

(72 Posts)
BabCNesbitt Tue 24-Nov-15 21:22:03

Sorry, I'm all about the stupid questions today. SAHM for nearly 5 years and I can count on one hand the number of occasions I've "dressed up" (ie not worn one of my regular rotation tops with my jeans) in that time. Now I have two events in the space of a month and I can't figure out what to buy for them as it's been so long since I wore a dress that I feel ridiculous when I think of wearing anything other than jeans and a boring top. (Used to wear dresses and heels every day in the old days... )

Event 1: engagement party in a trendy pub in SE London. Lots of people that I haven't seen for ages. Drinks in afternoon, possible club afterwards if I'm not too much of a knackered old lady.

Event 2: family wedding in frozen plains of the Midwest. Anticipating lots of white teeth and helmet hair. 500 (!) people going, apparently, so no-one's going to give a fuck what I'm wearing except me. Something with sleeves preferred so I don't get hypothermia going from church to reception.

Would prefer to get something that would cover both these events but could go for two outfits if not too expensive. Budget probably only about £75 or so, £100 absolute maximum. I'm 5'5"ish, 14-16 (got really flabby in the last year), very late thirties. Thick-waisted and look terrible in anything flared, so skater or a-line dresses are out. Nothing too femme. HoC Autumn, apparently, and definitely can't wear black as it makes me look dead.

Um... Help? thanks

BabCNesbitt Wed 25-Nov-15 08:51:23

Bumping for morning.

purrito Wed 25-Nov-15 16:12:32

www.houseoffraser.co.uk/Poppy+Lux+Yvonne+Floral+Shift+Dress/231643320,default,pd.html?cm_mmc=ShopStyle-_-Women-_-Dresses-_-Yvonne+Floral+Shift+Dress&_$ja=tsid%3a45090%7ckw%3aShopStyle+UK%7ccgn%3a79682&awinDCS=3100_1448467049_3ec28ffcbf8d94063174e216600f3baf%7c%7c0%7c%7c0%7c%7c0%7c%7c1741561736&cm_mmc=AWIN-_-Deeplink-_-NULL-_-NULL&istCompanyId=17910aed-1bae-4362-9580-b523eb87a91e&istItemId=imrqpqmx&istBid=t

www.closetlondon.com/closet-purple-and-red-floral-button-detail-tunic-dress.html

www.closetlondon.com/closet-teal-dart-detail-3-4-sleeve-dress.html

www.marksandspencer.com/sequin-embellished-shift-dress/p/p22397381?source=affwindow&extid=af_a_Content_79682_ShopStyle%20UK&comgp=79682

goddiva.co.uk/waterfall-peplum-midi-dress-teal.html?utm_source=AffiliateWindow&utm_medium=AffiliateTraction

BabCNesbitt Wed 25-Nov-15 16:25:12

Thanks for replying, purrito! I'm not really feeling it with any of these, though - they feel either too, I don't know, "womanly" or just a bit staid (the teal one). I like the look of stuff from Cos etc, but don't know if they're wedding appropriate and suspect I'd just look pregnant in a lot of them.

purrito Wed 25-Nov-15 18:51:18

If that is what you usually like, you should absolutely buy a dress from COS or similar. Their stuff may not be "typical" wedding attire, but then who needs yet another floral or lacy dress at a wedding?!

Would any of these be more your thing?

www.cosstores.com/nl/Women/Dresses/Wide-neck_wool_dress/46881-33294981.1#c-22755

www.cosstores.com/nl/Women/Dresses/Contrast_fitted_dress/46881-33580511.1#c-22755

www.zalando.co.uk/tiger-of-sweden-joli-s-jersey-dress-ti521c02h-k11.html

I love the first one (very tempted to buy it myself) and would definitely wear it to a winter wedding with a nice cuff bracelet. The other two could be nice with a statement necklace.

BabCNesbitt Wed 25-Nov-15 19:31:06

Allergic to wool, so the first one would be out (although ideal for the frigid US wedding!), but I like the latter two (had never heard of Tiger of Sweden, so thank you - will look out for them in sales).

In the end I bought this: www.asos.com/ASOS/ASOS-Pencil-Dress-in-Multi-Stitch-with-Obi-Wrap/Prod/pgeproduct.aspx?iid=5424247. Actually, looking at it now, I wonder if it might just make me look like a sack of tatties - that thick waist again? I have a towelling dressing gown with a tie-waist that just seems to emphasise how boxy I am...

BabCNesbitt Mon 30-Nov-15 19:38:15

Right, sorry for bumping my week-old thread, but I'm in need of suggestions again. The dress I ordered from ASOS, as predicted, made me look like I'd just slung on my dressing down to go answer the postman. I asked DH if it made me look fat and he hesitated, then said "more so than your jumper and jeans". angry

So anyway: engagement party this weekend - probably too late to order anything for that (not paying for expensive overnight delivery for something I may well hate) so will only be able to look in the limited range of shops nearby (M&S, JL, Debenhams, that kind of thing). I have more time before the US wedding, so open to online suggestions too.

Thanks again!

glentherednosedbattleostrich Mon 30-Nov-15 19:42:38

Have a look at lindy bop.

BabCNesbitt Mon 30-Nov-15 19:50:35

I've had a look at Lindy Bop in the past, and while I love how they, Collectif, Lady Vintage etc look on others, they just feel too "femme" for me. I have very short hair and prefer pointy flats and brogues to heels! (There is a place in town that sells Vintage Vixen and other labels like that, but they have no mirrors in their changing rooms and I feel too sheepish and mutton to come out onto the shop floor twirling!)

purrito Mon 30-Nov-15 22:18:49

Hey Bab, sorry to hear the Asos dress didn't work out.

Would a nice tunic / blouse with skinny trousers and pointy flats be an option for the engagement party?

A few more dress ideas:

www.johnlewis.com/gerard-darel-boyd-dress-green/p2237145
www.johnlewis.com/jaeger-silk-essential-tunic-dress-midnight/p2127556
www.johnlewis.com/jigsaw-satin-back-placket-dress-deep-teal/p2199468
www.marksandspencer.com/front-pleat-drape-shift-dress/p/p22447664

Blouses/Tunics:

www.johnlewis.com/gerard-darel-silk-tunic-shirt/p2253324?colour=Blue
www.johnlewis.com/french-connection-samantha-shirting-tunic-turtle/p2023287
www.marksandspencer.com/long-sleeve-v-neck-blouse/p/p22420595
www.johnlewis.com/mango-flowy-blouse-green/p2309256
www.johnlewis.com/allsaints-agave-top/p2269691?colour=Dark%20Ink

niminypiminy Mon 30-Nov-15 22:36:49

How about this very striking dress from M&S? Not at all girly. Or a jumpsuit?

BabCNesbitt Tue 01-Dec-15 08:40:16

Thanks for the replies! And especially thanks for all the suggestions again, purrito. Most of the JL ones were a bit beyond my price range, unfortunately, but I did like the M&S blouse - may try and look for it in town today.

Niminy, I really liked the dress and the jumpsuit, but it's just a colour thing - black and that kind of red manage to suck all the life out of my face. It does seem like M&S might be worth having a poke around in, though, which amazes me - I always dash through the womenswear with my head down on the way to the children's department!

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:01:10

Obviously you know you and I don't but we areabout the same height and size. I find a line and skater type dresses quite flattering as they help to balance out my heavy bust and create more of a waist.

Thing I'm asking is...are you sure?

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:05:17

Looking at John Lewis for you. Not too girly.

www.johnlewis.com/warehouse-jacquard-prom-dress-gold/p2307178

V neck to flatter bust, gives you a waist and skirt can hide a multitude of sins

It should look good with your short hair too.

Hated that green thing :-(

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:05:54

Oh and I don't understand this colours thing. Hoc

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:13:20

This one

www.johnlewis.com/coast-gratzee-bandeau-dress-emerald/p2283752

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:16:18

I bet you'd look good in this...but look at the price !

www.johnlewis.com/karen-millen-tie-neck-dress-dark-red/p2271561

BabCNesbitt Tue 01-Dec-15 09:19:47

It's House of Colour, Dowser grin I had it done a couple of years ago and do go through phases of thinking it's all a bit cultish, but it's definitely true that in certain colours (including, sadly, black) I look like death.

With the skater dress thing, it's not that I wouldn't objectively look "ok" in it - it's just that in anything too girly like that, I feel like Grayson Perry.

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:22:44

Perhaps you can look at this

www.johnlewis.com/hobbs-montgomery-dress-magenta-pink/p2093522

It's a very nice structured dress. It will give you a lovely shape. Just in budget I think.

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:24:33

Thanks Babs. I get the concept, I just don't know what autumn means, summer etc.

Are any of those dresses near the mark?

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:25:07

Can you wear black mixed in with other colours?

niminypiminy Tue 01-Dec-15 09:25:52

Dowser I get what the OP means - I like the dresses you linked to on someone else - I just don't have a feminine style at all and I feel like I'm in drag rather than being charmingly gamine which is how they could look on someone with cropped hair (as I too have). On me they would look like bad dressing up clothes.

I think it needs something bolder and stronger than those dresses. It's a shame about the colour of the red M&S dress because I think that's a real winner.

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:28:30

This looks elegant. You can do click and collect too.

www.johnlewis.com/white-stuff-decedent-textured-dress-decadent-green/p2289062

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:30:24

And this

www.johnlewis.com/white-stuff-house-of-otto-dress-eclectic-pink/p2271201

Dowser Tue 01-Dec-15 09:33:54

Will this look as nice in the flesh ?

www.johnlewis.com/closet-ribbed-panel-bodycon-dress-purple/p2253217

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