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Image / Fashion

What to wear with…. a trapeze dress

by Freya Drohan
29th Jan 2020


Balloon sleeves and no tailoring in sight: voluminous, shapeless maxi and midi dresses are the roomy silhouettes to bet big on this spring   

Picture the scene: It’s January 756th, and you’ve been encased in your jeans and trousers for what feels like an eternity. Thankfully, spring is on the horizon and your ankles are about to be set free. With this slow dance towards a new season after a long, dreary winter comes a welcome shift in mindset towards what we could and should be wearing if the weather was on our side.

Following on from our smock dress obsession last year, we’re anticipating the return of the oversized sack-like gúna once again; albeit longer, sometimes floor-grazing trapeze dress versions this time. Naturally, as Copenhagen Fashion Week kicks off this week and looks set to dominate our Instagram feeds (and virtual mood boards) for the foreseeable, the coolest women in the industry will be nonchalantly rocking these glorified sacks as only their effortlessly cool selves can.

On paper, it shouldn’t work. But beautiful, floaty creations from the likes of Beaufille, Stine Goya, Aje, Cecilie Bahnsen et al have us convinced that less is more. Mark our words, when the chill leaves the air, all you’ll want to wear is a roomy dress and a fun statement accessory that doesn’t take itself too seriously either.

Here’s what to bookmark for later inspo.

A chunky sandal

After becoming the unlikely breakout star of the foot world, the tourist sandal can’t believe its luck and is staying put while the going is good. Pair a pretty, diaphanous dress with a rubber or cork shoe for a quirky contrast.

Leather blazer, beaded bag and chunky boots

If this look was a Pose ballroom category, it would be “serving us cool aunt whose closet you’ve always wanted to raid realness.”

The bag of the moment

Trust Moda Operandi’s Fashion and Buying Director Lisa Aiken to anticipate this trend a year ago. Take a leaf out of her styling book and go full ‘Man Repeller’ with flat sandals, a cloud-like pouch and silk scarf belt.

Boho bag and leather boots

Emulate a walking Chloé advert in an oversized peasant dress and pair with 1970s-inspired accessories like a slouchy over-the-knee leather boot.

A wide waist belt

Obi, cummerbunds and wrap waist belts are coming back in a big way. Make like Vogue’s Sarah Harris and use a statement buckle number to add a focal point to an otherwise mundane, floor-length cotton shift.

Flatforms and funky sunglasses

For the full “I’m not a regular art teacher, I’m a fun art teacher” effect, look no further than the loose, flowing dress, flatforms and sunnies on a chain combo.

Lace-up boots

A plaid milkmaid dress and hiking boots? So *this* is what they mean when they say rules are meant to be broken.

A western ankle boot

The juxtaposition of a Wild Wild West-worthy boot perfectly offsets the whimsical nature of a dreamy, shapeless floral frock.

A chic low bun

This outfit on Monikh Dale just screams evening at the beach bar. Until then, add a cropped leather jacket and lug sole boots until it’s appropriate to go barefoot with a glass of rosé.

Read more: Waistcoats are trending – here’s 6 of our favourites

Read more: Style refresh: how to dress up your white shirt with a chic body chain

Read more: Chain reaction: How chainmail became the new normal in fashion

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