StyleHiving: The Mini Dress

Ever since Gossip Girl Serena van der Woodsen sexily draped herself over a pool table in a black studded Catherine Malandrino shift dress while on her first date with the loveable Dan Humphrey, I had to stop and reassess my opinion of the mini dress as date wear. Off to Bloomingdales I went where I purchased my first ever mini dress, which had me asking: ‘where have you been all my life’ the second I slipped it on.

The magic of a mini dress, like the one worn by Serena, is that it strikes the perfect balance between revealing and reserved. The daring length is countered by the absence of cleavage and an ultra formfitting silhouette for a look that still leaves much to be desired. I wouldn’t recommend this look if you’re, say, going bowling, but for a dinner date or drinks, whip it out and work it. Since these dresses tend to be a bit forgiving, it can be difficult to discern how they’re supposed to fit. You’re best bet is to make sure the dress gently grazes the body and isn’t too clingy or billowy.

1) A graphic mini dress is one of those just-slip-it-on-and-you’re-done ensembles, and seriously, as fun as it is to coordinate a whole ensemble, who doesn’t love a little no-muss, no-fuss action from time-to-time.

[Catherine Malandrino Embroidered Applique Dress, $425, Diane Von Furstenberg Raia Mini Dress, $425]

2) A mini dress in a basic color with an embellished neckline draws the attention upward toward your face.

[Shoshanna Metallic Dress, $330, 3.1 Phillip Lim Open Back Shift Dress, $675]

3) A mini dress in a fun pattern is the perfect blend of carefree girliness and hot-mama sex appeal. To avoid looking too cluttered, keep the accessories simple and minimal.

[Porter Grey Long Sleeve Shift Dress, $365, Manoush Silk Print Mini Dress, $355]

4) Not comfortable showing off loads of skin? A long sleeve mini dress is the perfect way to keep you classy and confident.

[Thread Social Crew Neck Bubble Sleeve Dress, $518, Tibi Painted shift dress $360]

5) Bold colors are huge this season, so give it a go with these bright minis.

[Theory, $275, Nili Lotan Mimi Dress, $326]