Every day, we get tons of questions from our readers about what to buy and how to wear it. Our Facebook page, Twitter feed and email inboxes are perpetually packed with your queries—and as editors, it’s our job to help you navigate these tricky real-life dressing scenarios with ease (and style, of course). Read on for today’s inquiry!
Q: I am looking for a backless or one-shoulder dress that’s still summer-y and casual–possibly in black, but I am open to other colors! Lengthwise, I’d like it to either hit my knee or slightly above it. I can’t find anything…can you help?
Our answer today comes from Lucky‘s Digital Writer, Alison Syrett Cleary, a seasoned online shopper who memorizes the product selection and sale schedule on websites better than she does people’s names.
"You are in luck! Mid-June is the best time go shopping for a casual summery dress, be it backless, one-shouldered or otherwise; it’s late enough in the season that most every shopping site will have some good options (many even on sale!), but not so late that sizes have started to sell out. For the widest selection, I suggest beginning your hunt with either an e-tailer that carries multiple labels or a big brand chain. ASOS, Topshop and Forever 21 are all good places if you’re on a budget; if not, I guarantee that Shopbop, Stylebop or Net-a-Porter will have (a somewhat pricey) something. Really, though, that’s just the starting point! Like I said before, pre-Independence Day is when stores are best stocked with warm weather dresses, so there’s lots to choose from almost everywhere.
If you are concerned that a back-baring piece might look too formal, pay extra attention to what kind of fabric it’s made from. Your safest bets are cotton and jersey, which has an inherent effortlessness; light wispy silk, too, can be dressed down with flats. Materials to avoid: tight-fitting lace (sturdier, breathable varieties are okay), ponte (looks like you’re heading to the office) and anything shiny (too heavy for summer anyways). Also, any sort of draping or loose cut will seem less buttoned-up than something very structured or pleated.
To start your search off right, I did little digging myself—below are six one-shoulder or backless styles, in both black and other colors, available online right now."
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