I don’t think you can beat the simplicity of a drapy summer dress in a nice cool natural fibre and a pair of sandals on a hot day.
Necklace – made by Helen
Dress – East
Sandals – Greenshoes
Sadly, despite having quite a lot of summer dresses, few of them are suitable for really hot weather. The main problem is that I have a short torso and a large bust and about 75% of available dresses have necklines which are too low to wear to work without a camoisole under them, and funnily enough when the temperature is in the high 20s the last thing I want to be doing is wearing a camisole. (I decided last summer that I wasn’t going to buy any more summer dresses that needed camisoles for modesty, but that has mostly just meant I have bought far fewer summer dresses than I would have liked to this year, and rejected an awful lot of otherwise-lovely things straight away. This purple dress is one of the very few successes.)
And then, the dresses which don’t have deep necklines all tend to be either sleeveless, or short, or both. And while I absolutely agree with Ros that any woman can wear sleeveless things if she wants, I’m not really comfortable with having that much skin on show in the office. And the same thing goes for skirts above the knee with bare legs. Yes, other people do both of these, sometimes even at the same time, and look fine, but personally I prefer not to. Given that men at work will always be wearing trousers and at least short-sleeved shirts, I feel uncomfortable and semi-naked if I don’t at least have my shoulders and knees covered up. (I don’t think this is unfeminist of me. Is it? I firmly believe I have the right to wear whatever I like, but I also believe I have the responsibility to adhere to relevant dress codes.)
It is a shame – I tried on a lovely dress in the Monsoon sale at lunchtime, pink with a white print, fitted bodice, full skirt, fairly high neck, and I might even have overlooked the lack of sleeves if the skirt had been a bit longer, but as it was the message it projected was definitely ‘pixie’ rather than ‘mature professional’. Whereas the lovely thing about this purple dress is that it does manage to look perfectly professional despite being cool and summery.
Anyway, this is really just another rehashing of Why I Need To Learn To Make My Own Dresses. Because then I could make lots of lovely just-below-the-knee dresses with short sleeves and necklines that didn’t show off too much cleavage, and cast my camisoles to the wind (or, y’know, just save them for colder days when I’m glad of the extra warmth). I’ve got the rest of this week off work, so maybe I’ll even get some sewing done. (Well, maybe. At the very least I want to take the two black sacks of unwanted clothes cluttering my room up to the charity shop. And finish my Cinnamon Girl cardigan. And catch up on my sleep before our financial year end. And possibly go to London to meet up with Louise at Nest. Anything else is going to be a bonus.)