Shake up your summer sundress with one of the most popular materials in modern history—denim.
Model photography by Genevieve Caron. Hair and makeup by Jukka Davines/Make Up For Ever/Plutino Group.
The 1980s ushered in the designer-denim era (hello, Calvin Klein!) and with it, the understanding that denim no longer referred to just a pair of jeans but instead an adaptable fabric used for every silhouette—including dresses. From the acid-wash minis of the '80s to the pinafore and overall styles of the '90s to the faded fitted patchwork dresses of the early 2000s (Britney!), denim dresses have adapted to every decade and trend with ease—a testament to the material's versatility.
Today's denim frocks veer toward simplicity. Try a shirtdress in a darker wash or a flowing silhouette that skims the body. The best parts? The spandex added to our denim helps us get that perfect fit, and companies have begun to look to more environmentally conscious methods of production, all the while maintaining denim's practical character.
THE DENIM DRESS
Keep a denim frock from looking too casual by adding feminine statement jewellery. This season's must-have? A bold shoulder-skimming earring.
A cinched waist is the easiest way to cut a girlie shape in your jean dress. Add definition to the look with a skinny belt, A-line tailoring or a chambray sash.
You can shop silhouettes in all lengths, but a universally flattering hem hits just below the knee and skims the body. Stay away from anything too tight or bulky if you're after ease and comfort.
Lean in to denim's cowboy credentials with a suede boot. Shop for options in browns and stick to a low block heel to keep the ensemble modern.
1. CLASS ACT
Long-sleeved belted dress, $98, levi.ca.
A denim shirt gets the frock treatment along with a leather belt—the perfect balance of masculine and feminine.
2. TEED OFF
Shift dress, $29, joefresh.com.
Pick a breezy t-shirt look with such modern details as embroidery and laces.
Ashley dress, $395, miriam-baker.com.
A shift is great for year-round dressing. Layer over turtlenecks and under jackets when it's cool out.
4. SOUTHERN BELLE
Tiered dress, $50, oldnavy.ca.
The fabric adds edge to the otherwise-flirty ruffle and tiers of this style.