How to wear Sheath Dress and look Fab

Do you know that a sheath dress is a form-fitting dress that often falls to knee length or below?

A sheath dress is a versatile style that you can choose to dress up or down, thus, making it a popular choice for work, events, and occasions.

While the style looks good on most body types, there are certain factors one should consider when deciding whether it is right for you.

It is important to note that a dress silhouette is the overall shape of the dress that creates when it hangs on your body.

In simple words, it is the outline of the dress rather than all the details.

Different silhouettes aim to show, emphasize, or flatter different shapes or parts.

One silhouette may draw attention to the curves, and it is a sheath outline.

Keep on reading.

Sheath Dress

Like the word sheath, sheath dress tends to be form-fitting at every point of the body, from your bodice to your hips to the hem of your body.

As the silhouette is so tight, sheath dresses will often feature slits to allow you to move freely.

Moreover, a sheath dress tends to emphasize your curves and is particularly effective for curvy or hourglass body types, with a slim waist, wide hips, and large bust areas.

sheath dress 1

It is important to note that a sheath dress comes in a number of different cuts, and lengths.

Necklines can range from v-neck to halter.

While sheath dresses are most often sleeveless, however, can also be long sleeve half sleeves, or cap sleeves.

Other dress styles include a-line dresses, empire waist dresses, drop waist dresses, and shift dresses.

History of Sheath Dress

The first concept of a sheath dress dates back to Ancient Egypt, where artwork shows women and gods wearing form-fitted lengths of fabric.

Then, this type of dress became famous in the late 1800s.

It was when the queen consort of the United Kingdom, Alexandra of Denmark, also known as “Princess Sheath Dresses” frequently wore it.

The modern sheath dress is attributed to the French designer Paul Poiret.

He designed form-fitting dresses with slits so that women could more easily.

By the 1950s, major designers like Christian Dior were making sheath dresses as business attire, evening wear, and everyday looks.

Moreover, in the 1960s, celebrities such as Marilyn Monroe and Audrey Hepburn further make the sheath dress a wardrobe staple of American womenswear.

Today, you can find a number of sheath dresses in any department store, with all kinds of details and embellishments.

These range from floral prints to crepes or pleats to ruffles.

Difference Between Sheath Dress and Shift Dress

Though sheath dress and shift dress have the same sounding names, these are two very different types of dress.

These differ in:

Shape: While a sheath dress is form-fitting, a shift dress is the opposite.

Shift dresses tend to flow almost straight down along your body in one vertical line, with only a very slight difference between the measurements for the bust, midsection, hips, and hem.

However, sheath dresses tend to look tight and accentuate the shape of an hourglass figure.

While shift dresses are shapeless or boxy and conceal the shape of your body.

Materials: Sheath cuts tend to hug your figure, so they are mostly in fabrics with a little stretch.

sheath dress 2

On the other hand, shift the dress drape away from your curves and allow your shin to breathe.

So they often are made from lightweight, breathable fabrics like linen that do not have much stretch.

Slit: As sheath dress is form-fitting, they will often include a list in the hem to allow for a comfortable range of motion.

However, shift dresses are loose and flowy.

This means that they will provide ease of movement and do not need a slit.

What to Look For?

When buying a Sheath dress, look for:

Length: The most flattering hemline tends to be either a few inches below the know or just above it.

Anything shorter can make the ladylike air away from you. Thus, the same applies to mid-calf hemlines.

Fit: If the dress tends to squeeze your armpits or pulls at the seams, then it is too small.

Moreover, the dress should be close to your body, not extremely tight.

You can consider investing on a good-quality sheath dress and make any alterations later you need.

This will enable you to wear a simply staple piece for years to come.

Style: If you are looking for a great starter piece, you can get a dress in a lightly-textured neutral fabric.

Moreover, you can play with a number of fun colors and expand into them.

Other than this, you can opt for a sleeveless sheath dress with a classic neckline, back vent, and tapered shirt shape that tends to fit your waist stunningly.

However, for a more professional look, make sure your dress has a concealed zipper and is above knee length.

Slit: Whether in the back or side, a slit will make you more comfortable when walking in that slim shape.

So feel free to snip yours open.

Consider your Body Type

When buying a sheath dress, consider your body type.

If you have a straight or hourglass figure, a sheath dress will look great on you.

If you have a pear-shaped body type, you may want to try it with a belt to cinch at your waist and create a more flattering silhouette.

In case you are a woman with a full bust, you may want to consider wearing a sheath dress with a v-neckline,

This will help to balance your proportions.

In case you have a petite frame, look for a dress that comes in a shorter hemline.

form-fitting dress

It is important to note that a sheath dress is often below the knee and will perfectly fit any body shape.

The sleek and chic look of this dress is ideal due to its flexibility and visual interest.

The width of the panel tends to change depending on how large your dress is.

If a plus-sized women is not wearing a proper fit, she might experience a shrinking panel that accentuates her curves.

Despite the fact that sheath dresses are body-hugging, anyone can wear them.

If you are wearing bulkier clothes, you can pair them with a belt without looking bulky.

Wearing this look with a pair of ankle boots will keep your feet warm.

Flatter your Figure

As these dresses are slightly more form-fitting and highlight proportions, a sheath dress is great if you have an hourglass figure or heart shape.

A shift dress is simply a dress that falls straight down from your shoulders, resulting in a flowy look over your hips and waist.

Regardless of your body type, a sheath dress is a flattering, versatile, and timeless piece that you can wear with anything.

Moreover, it is ideal for an office as it is straightforward and form-fitting.

Nonetheless, if you know how to wear it properly, you can wear it to any occasion.

When you wear a light sheath dress, you can look thinner and shapeless, as it will emphasize your curves.

It is important to note that a sheath dress is flattering, especially if it has a bit of a curve-hugging silhouette.

While a poorly fitted or ill-proportioned dress will look frumpy and dowdy.

Thus, if you are not sure whether a particular dress looks flattering on you or not, you can try on different styles before you buy it.

Dress for any Occasion

Think about what event you are attending before selecting a sheath dress.

Cocktail parties tend to be casual, whereas office events will require a more formal look.

You can choose the right fabric and cut for any occasion, whether it is a dressy look or a more casual one.

You can choose a number of fabrics including silk, wool, and chiffon, however, make sure to choose a fabric that fits your needs.

for any occasion

Moreover, if you want to opt for accessories, pair your sheath dress with a pair of heels or belts.

When selecting a dress, take all of the options into account, it is a versatile piece that you can dress up or dress down depending on the occasion.

Consider questions like causal setting, business casual, business formal, whether you will sit down mostly, walk around, whether will there be wet or drastic changes in the temperatures, etc.

All these questions should be considered before you wear a sheath dress.

Tips for Styling a Sheath Dress

These dresses are versatile and you can style them in a number of different ways.

Consider the following:

Layer it Up: As these dresses are extremely versatile, you can pair them with almost anything outerwear.

For a fun and daytime look, or business casual look, opt for a light-colored swing jacket or cardigan.

Or you can throw on a top over your dress to wear it like a penicl skirt.

For an edgy night out look, you can opt for a leather jacket and ankle boots.

Blazers are also a great pairing option for an office look, however, be careful when wearing on over a sheath dress in more casual settings.

This tends to skew towards a more business-formal dress code.

Use a Belt: Sheath dresses tend to emphasize your curves, so feel free to add an extra cinching effect to bring more attention to your waist.

A colored belt, sash, or ribbon is a great way to create a clean line at your midsection and show off your proportions.

Underlayers: While most people tend to overlayer the dress, you can try layering your dress underneath.

In wintertime, you can wear a turtleneck or long-sleeved shirt underneath your dress for a creative look.

However, if you are looking for a good business formal option, you can try a crisp white button-up.

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