Take dress style to the max

Bella top, �25; Coralee cardigan, �19; trousers, �29; all from Fenn Wright Manson.
Bella top, �25; Coralee cardigan, �19; trousers, �29; all from Fenn Wright Manson.
Tom Chambers as Bobby in Crazy For You. Picture by Richard Davenport

REVIEW: Crazy For You, at Mayflower Theatre in Southampton

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The maxi dress has been in style for many summer seasons and doesn’t seem to be on its way out any time soon.

Whether you are a bohemian trendsetter off to a music festival or simply trying to beat this sudden heatwave, chances are your go-to garment will be an easy, floor-length maxi.

They are a great all-purpose choice for summer because they come in many styles, suit different body shapes and personalities and are comfortable, as well as being fashionable!

They can be flowing or form-fitting and can hide problem areas. For instance, you can show off your bust whilst hiding less-than-perfect legs.

Choose a dress that accents the thinnest part of your torso, whether that’s right below the bust or your natural waist.

A maxi dress can be smart or casual, tough or feminine, depending on your choice of accessories.

A dress in an all-over soft, muted colour can be given a harder edge with the addition of a cropped leather or denim jacket and a statement belt.

If you’re in a girly mood, opt for a maxi in a delicate and pretty print with flip-flops and dainty jewellery.

Due to the continuous length, maxi dresses can make even the tallest of women look more diminutive. For the more vertically-challenged, looking shorter usually isn’t the goal. If you need more height, slip on a pair of heels with your maxi which will give the illusion of looking taller.

Generally, if you are petite, avoid fuller skirts with too much voluminous material in favour of more fitted styles with a defined waist. Create a waistline if necessary with a slim belt.

Whether you go for a heel or a flat, you will want a shoe that has the same warm weather aesthetic. Stick with strappy sandals, wedges or flip flops that show your skin.

Once you’ve decided on your chosen style of shoe, it is essential that your dress is the right length. If you’re wearing your maxi with flats, you’ll want the hem of the dress to fall to the bottom of your ankle. If you opt for heels, the dress will need to hang about 1/4 inch from the floor, allowing your feet to just peek out under your dress. Beware the wrong length dress as it can wreck any maxi/shoe combination.

For more advice, go to imageconsultanthampshire.co.uk