Oh slip dresses, this love affair is going on strong for another season, and whilst it looked oh-so-elegant on the tall and graceful models that sauntered, sashayed and stomped down the runway, the effect can sometimes be altogether somewhat different on bigger boobs. Example: two summers ago on a date, I pulled off my jacket outside a bar in Soho to reveal a slip dress that nailed the perfect combo of sassy and cool – without being overtly sexy. But some Neanderthal of a man happened to exclaim in front of everyone “Ah, finally the stripper is here!” – clapping his hands together over his beer belly with much merriment at his not-so-megalolz joke. Fortunately, nobody laughed, and all he was met by was a drop-dead bitch glare via me, followed up with “you wish you could be so lucky, darling.” Well, you must be sassy enough to match the sassy levels of the dress, no? So I’m here to call bullshit on the fact that you can’t – or shouldn’t – wear slip dresses if you have anything more than a handful on your chest.
First tip? Embrace it. As they say, if you’ve got it, flaunt it. As much disdain I hold for Trinny & Susannah’s body-shaming disguised as fashion advice, they were perhaps onto something when they embraced low-cut necklines for gals past a D cup.
Secondly, buy a good bra. Strapless or non-strapless, just let it do the job. Fear of straps poking out? Choose one in the same colour as the dress and work with it. After all, slip dresses are based on the underwear as outerwear trend, so I’m pretty sure you’ll never have quite as good an excuse to show off some delicate lace bra straps as this. Consider it a sartorial get out of jail free card!
Thirdly, go super 90s and layer it over the top of a T-shirt. Less cleavage, more day-friendly. Looks a little bit like you were the kickass High School bitch, pulled freshly out of a teen movie from your childhood which makes it even better.
Fourthly, a lot of it is about the fit. The looser it’s cut, the better it’ll hang from your body. Bias cuts will flatter too. It’s worth sizing up – I opt for a 10 over an 8 because the fit feels way more louche.
Finally, if you still feel a little too naked, team it avec a belted duster coat like I have to help cover up a little. Subtly sexy, totally understated.
Photography by Rebecca Spencer
I’m wearing ASOS slip dress, & Other Stories duster, VVA Dahlia tote (c/o), Topshop Mules (£22 version here)