Ode to the Shirtdress

Happy Friday, my friends! It feels like Fall has finally “officially” hit our area – temps are dropping, wind is whipping and we’re drowning in pumpkin spice everything as far as the eye can see!

As much as I craved a change of temperature (I was so over Summer!) I’m already freezing cold constantly, and intellectually I KNOW it’s not even that cold yet! I get cold so easily and feel it so deeply – it’s a result of both the fibro and the weight-loss surgery. As I’m sitting here typing, my fingers feel like popsicles and my toes, though clad in socks and suede ankle boots, feel like they’re one step away from numb! It’s going to be a looong winter!

Full disclosure, I came close to not posting today. I have been so busy lately – physically and mentally. As well, my physical issues have been kind of a nuisance. But, this week on Instagram is our “Thrifted Chic Challenge”. Those of you who follow me there know that I participate in that pretty regularly. Though they do pick a “winner” each month, it’s really just a fun way for a group of fellow “thrifters” to get together online and see one another showcase some of their resale purchases. I love seeing what others have found. Of course, with my love of resale, that’s pretty much everyday with me! LOL! Anyway, several days ago, I used a shirt-dress, actually two shirt-dresses, in the outfit I put together and couldn’t help thinking what a valuable piece a great shirt-dress is in a woman’s wardrobe. Thus, rather than abandoning my post today, I decided to share that look – and a little shirt-dress info – with you.

The shirt-dress really exploded onto the fashion scene in the 1950’s when Christian Dior launched it as part of his “New Look” couture designs post-World War II. Of course, with Dior’s love of the strong feminine shape, his dresses were worn with a crinoline beneath the skirt. As much as I adore the look of original Dior designs, that sounds outrageously uncomfortable to wear all day! Less formal versions made of cotton, soon became staples in women’s wardrobes.

Once they had their foot in the fashion door, so to speak, shirt-dresses never went back out, and should still be a fundamental piece in your wardrobe. Right now I have five (I recently got rid of one whose color was not in my “wheel”), each of different cuts, each of which I love and gets plenty of wear!

One of the great things about shirt-dresses is their versatility! Note in the pics that sometimes they’re worn traditionally as a dress, but sometimes they’re worn as a vest or duster, and sometimes they’re worn as a belted tunic with skinny jeans or leggings. All of these looks work great. NOTE: if you’re concerned about keeping balance in your look make sure you wear the longer, fuller dress with a skinny bottom. A wide leg or full bottom will give your whole body a wide appearance and make you look heavier. This is fine if you have a very long, willowy body, but very few of us a blessed with such.

This week, I went a little further out of the box. (Don’t panic! Nothing too nuts!) An easy option that any of you could try. All it takes? Two dresses. I used a denim traditional shirt-dress and a plaid “faux” shirt-dress.

I had just gotten dressed – in the plaid “faux” shirt-dress. (softest dress ever, by the way!) But, after putting my look together – dress, fleece lined tights, OTK boots – I realized I was still crazy cold and needed a finishing piece over the top. Next thing you know I started pulling all my cardi’s, kimono’s, blazers and vests from the closet. There was only one I truly liked and, since it was Thrifted Chic Challenge Week, I set it aside because I had already worn it that week! (Heaven forbid we should repeat! Haha!) Then it hit me… I had a relatively new denim shirt-dress in the closet. Denim goes with everything and how cute would that be to have the plaid peak out of the denim dress?! And, so my newest way to wear my shirt-dress was born – doubled up!


Do you have a shirt-dress in your wardrobe? Have you found an unusual way to wear it? What about other pieces of clothing? How do you think outside the box with your clothes to keep your looks fresh and interesting? I’d love to hear your ideas!

Until We Meet Again!


4 Replies to “Ode to the Shirtdress”

  1. This reminds me of the time that we layered jackets over jackets on the blog. And I know people thought I was crazy. But really? It’s brilliant. Since it can be a duster, why not layer it over another dress??
    You know I’m totally going to copy this!! Thanks Ronnie!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love your doubled up look. Can you believe that I don’t have one shirt-dress in my possession. I remember back in my teens making that classic shirtwaist dress with the belt and everything. But the last 40 years…nada.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Terri! I’ll admit I’m surprised you don’t have one. I can actually picture you in a classic shirtdress. It seems to suit you. Frankly, it’s only been the last two years that I’ve fallen in love with them. Before that I never owned one! I guess we’re reversed in our ownership status! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. You know it DOES make me think of when you did the jackets! After I put them together, it seemed like the most obvious thing in the world! I don’t know why it never struck me before. But, isn’t that always the way! I hope you DO use it! I can’t wait to see how you all interpret it!
    Have a great weekend!


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