You know what I think I love most about spring? Dresses. I could say it’s all about the sunshine, the freshly mown grass, the budding blooms and the promises of new life but I am siding with the dresses.
Next month dresses are all I will be wearing. For a reason. Frocktober raises money and awareness for Ovarian Cancer.
Unlike many other cancers there is no early detection test. Consequently ovarian cancer is often diagnosed in its late stages and only 20%-30% of women will survive beyond five years of diagnosis. In comparison, survival rates increase to 80-100% when ovarian cancer is detected and treated early.
(source: Frocktober everydayhero page)
That sounds to me like a really good reason to fund research for an early detection test and to bring awareness to a cancer we don’t talk about all that much. AND it’s fun to wear dresses all the time.
Last year, I am slightly embarrassed to admit, I didn’t need to re-wear any dresses. A recent dress re-count of my wardrobe and I could probably extend Frocktober well into Frockvember and still have a few unworn pieces. But I know not everyone is quite as dress-obsessed, makes their own clothes or has a spare downstairs wardrobe. So I put together some inspiration on how to wear dresses for thirty-one days straight.
Wear to find the dresses
Your wardrobe: your whole wardrobe. Yes, this is fairly self-explanatory, but don’t forget to explore the dresses you seldom wear. The evening dresses. The forgotten corporate dresses (if you are at home with kids). The kaftan you only wear on the beach. These dresses can be re-interpreted for every day wear. I have some ideas below.
Borrow. Have a friend or family member approximately your size? Why not see if they would be willing to swap a frock or two for the outfits you won’t be wearing during Frocktober? You could even host an outfit swapping party with friends and raise money for Frocktober at the same time.
Make. Do you have some fabric stashed away just waiting to be made up? Frocktober is the perfect excuse to whip up a dress. There are some awesome (free!) dress patterns on this Pinterest board (not my board, but it’s just fabulous).
Ask. If you are blogging your Frocktober, you never know, a fashion brand might send you a dress to flaunt. You can always ask (very politely).
Buy. Check out the op-shops for some cute, pre-loved dresses. Or if you are in the mood for some brand new pretty, the Champagne Cartel glamazons have this great round up of spring dresses.
View them as separates. As a one piece, dresses are an easy option but seemingly lack versatility. The way to get more mileage at of your dresses is to think of them as separates. Adding a top over or under a dress will give it a completely different look. For slim dresses, adding a skirt over the top is another option.
Use them as a canvas. A simple black dress is a great canvas for a stunning necklace, a statement belt or an amazing pair of shoes. The beauty of this is that people will remember the accessories, not the dress. So there’s plenty of opportunity for re-wears and re-styles.
Wear them differently. Obviously, this is only going to work for certain kinds of dresses: but if you have a stretch dress or a floaty maxi, you might be surprised at how good they can look back to front. A maxi skirt can be pulled up, add a belt, a voilà another dress. (Remember a few years back when Sienna Miller had everyone doing this?)
Layer. Adding jackets, vests, scarves etc. will add another dimension to your dresses and give you a lot more outfit choices. And if you live south of where I do, I figure it’s probably a necessity due to the weather.
Use the beach stuff. You might have beach throws or kaftans that you don’t wear outside the sand and surf because they are transparent. Invest (if you haven’t already) in a nude and/or white slip to wear under them and you might just have another option to add to your frock wardrobe. Alternatively, if you have a few sarongs around that never get worn (I have so many) you can sew up a dress very easily.
Make the evening into the every day. There are certain kinds of dresses that only work at night-time right? Maybe not. You can dress down a cocktail bustier dress by throwing a t-shirt over the top. A sweeping floor length gown can be made into a gorgeous day time maxi skirt by pairing it with a tank top.
More ideas. The below ideas aren’t meant as a style challenge (although if you want to use them that way, go ahead). They are intended as a set of ideas when you get stuck.
My last piece of advice is to plan your wardrobe for the month. Spend a few spare hours (huh! I know!) trying on things, playing around and seeing what works. It’s best to go into the month with loads of options. Not only are you raising money for an important cause, you will probably learn a few new things about your own wardrobe and expand your options (potentially, without a paying a cent!). Go on, donate some of that saved cash.
Want to join in?
If you would like to be a part of Frocktober you can find out more here and sign up here.
If you are blogging your Frocktober, I will be hosting a link up at the end of the month. Let me know if you want to co-host.
Are you joining in Frocktober? Are you blogging or instagramming it? I want to follow along!
Got any tips for making dresses go further?