Please help! Summer dresses for an (admittedly v fussy...) petite hourglass. Am I asking the impossible?!

(31 Posts)
KondoAttitude Thu 12-May-16 20:27:03

I desperately need some summer clothes. I'm great at winter dressing, awful at summer dressing. Thought maybe I could find some summer dresses that fit my (5'2, G-cup hourglass, size 10, 30-year-old) requirements. Can I hell!

So - can anyone help me to find dresses which:

- have at least cap sleeves - sleeveless seems to make me all boob
- will not show cleavage (e.g. really deep Vs are often too deep on me as I'm a shortarse, and I'm sick of accidentallly flashing my boobs)
- are around knee length (I'm 5'2, so this means around 38-39 inches), though I suppose I could get longer ones shortened if I LOVE the dress
- have a structured broad waistband (not a potato sack with a waist tie, nor a high single seam sitting above the natural waist which makes me look like the matron from Carry On...) or else are proper fit & flare with the narrow part of the dress sitting on my ACTUAL waist rather than an inch or two above it - this is why I can't usually buy petite....
- are neither glorified T-shirts (I'm not on the beach) nor stiff workwear dresses masquerading as casualwear under a "fun summer print" (Hobbs I'm looking at you!)
- are neither plain patternless black, pastel, bilious neon, nor animal/tribal print
- are made of natural fibres

I didn't realise my body shape and tastes were so out there. It's like asking for the moon on a stick. hmm

KondoAttitude Thu 12-May-16 20:33:32

Today I am wearing an FCUK jersey dress, which is only slightly too lowcut and has only slightly not enough sleeve. hmm BUT I am wearing it with the dreaded black leggings, as even on my shortarse self it is only thigh length. Apart from these aspects, it's great! grin

Marmaladeday Thu 12-May-16 20:38:32

To be honest I am a little terrified of responding as you are so specific but have you tried lady v london?
Maybe something like this ?

KondoAttitude Thu 12-May-16 20:47:01

Sorry! Was just an attemp to avoid dripfeeding likes/dislikes. blush

Unfortunately I'm not a big fan of these very vintage-style dress companies - I feel too much as if I'm in fancy dress, with the quirky patterns and very bouffy skirts, and selfconscious in the supermarket! I think I want something more understated. Thank you for the suggestion, though!

GreenGoth89 Thu 12-May-16 20:48:07

Pepperberry might be worth a shot

banivani Thu 12-May-16 20:57:42

I adore your specific requirements that are absolutely not insane or bizarre, but sadly for you fashion at the moment is all sad sacks for tall willow people. (Not bitter oh no) If you spend loads of money on the sad sacks, in desperation, I'm sure the shops will suddenly be inundated with exactly what you're looking for. sad

AgathaMystery Thu 12-May-16 21:02:03

Def pepperberry.

KondoAttitude Thu 12-May-16 21:03:04

The problem I have with Pepperberry is that they tend to really Emphasize Your Boobs in their designs. (And also often polyester.) I don't usually find dresses in "speciality" shops - it's just finding those elusive few on the normal high street that's hard! I do really love a good NW3 at Hobbs dress, for example, but their summer ones often veer between "lovely but very short" vs "glorified workwear or occasionwear packaged as casual".

KondoAttitude Thu 12-May-16 21:26:23

Banivani - yes! Everything seems to be bumskimming, midi, sleeveless or shapeless atm. I'm always fussy, but at least when fit and flare was all the rage there tended to be more basic choice for me.

This, for example, would have been great on me shapewise when Hobbs brought it out last summer - but it was just too short. sad

orchard13 Thu 12-May-16 21:29:21

Hi Kobdo, I am nearly the same proportions as you! (1 inch taller and 1 year older!!) so far this season I've found a lovely navy polka dot wrap dress from the petite section in Miss Selfridge, and a stripy one from the Henry Holland range in Debenhams... Let me find the links...

I know it's not what you're looking for, but I also have a play suit from Boden (not a popular choice on here!) and a jumpsuit from Abercrombie kids which are more appropriate at playgroups!!x

KondoAttitude Thu 12-May-16 21:45:44

The Henry Holland one is nice, if only it had just the tiniest cap sleeve! The Miss S one looks a bit short, and unfortunately they only have it in sizes 6 and 8.

SorrelForbes Thu 12-May-16 21:49:52

Watching with interest as I am 5'3", size 12, 30H, curvy and have exactly the same requirements!

KittyB52 Thu 12-May-16 21:50:35

Yes, you are asking the impossible. I'm shorter than you, and a good 10 years older, and there are NO dresses out there. Actually, I am struggling to find any nice clothes at all, not just dresses.

orchard13 Thu 12-May-16 22:18:16

The Miss S one is quite short! I have it in an 8 and it's a perfect fit, the wrap tie makes it adjustable and is flattering on the waist. Will let you know if I find anything else smile

RaisingSteam Thu 12-May-16 22:21:39

Can you sew? I'm wondering about breaking out the sewing machine for this one. If I was a size 10 like you I definitely would.

KondoAttitude Thu 12-May-16 22:38:34

RaisingSteam that's definitely not a dress only for 10s - go for it! Impressed by your sewing skills. I already own a dress quite like that - a teal one from Hobbs that I bought on ebay without trying on first. It's a lovely colour and a pretty good fit, but it's a little heavy/serious-looking somehow - great for work, but I find I have to roll up the sleeves, put on some jazzy shoes and some statement jewellery with it before I can wear it out. I wear it occasionally, but not sure I'd have bought it from the shop iyswim.

Cheered to know I'm not the only one, Sorrel and Kitty!

museumworker Fri 13-May-16 06:20:28

Lost last post... Grrr.


Late for work... Be back later

ihatethecold Fri 13-May-16 07:00:39

I am the same size at you op with 32gboobs.
I recently bought 2 dresses from fat face in the sale that have shirt sleeves. No cleavage on show and they finished at my knees.
They were only £20 each and are very flattering.
I'll try find a link.

ihatethecold Fri 13-May-16 07:01:49

banivani Fri 13-May-16 11:23:07

Kondo, if it's too short for you it must be the length of a fecking French maid sexy outfit, no offence. I'm 170 cm and I'm plagued by all "dresses" being frankly tunic length - had bitterly/blithely imagined that you shorties had it easier in that respect. ;) That said, I have a petite daughter who moans that the waist of dresses hits her on the hips, so that's a problem. It's a bit hard to lift the waist of the dress, I can hem stuff but re-sewing the waist is trickier! Also - to hell with breasts. Why do we have them when fashion companies won't sew for them.

Oh, but have you looked at the Polish companies? and

daftbesom Fri 13-May-16 13:46:34

Drive-by suggestion - John Lewis website has brilliant filters that allow you to specify all sorts of things when searching for dresses: neckline, sleeve, short or long, colour etc, give it a try.

hollinhurst84 Fri 13-May-16 13:52:46

Was just about to suggest biubiu!

LadyReuleaux Fri 13-May-16 14:46:29

Have you tried emily & fin? This is just one option but they have lots more. I'm tall and their dresses are much too short in the waist for me which makes me think they might work for you.

Sonotkylie Fri 13-May-16 15:34:25

I have this one. Its beautiful and fits perfectly. I have 30g and long waist and the waist is (almost perfect)! Fantastic quality and true to size.

KondoAttitude Fri 13-May-16 17:52:55

Hi, thanks for all the links - sorry, been at work all day. Will grab something to eat and have a look!

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