I went to J.Crew on a mission to find a striped top that I just LOVED online. As Dan and I were walking in, we spotted this poppy red dress and Dan suggested I try it on. Unfortunately, the striped top didn’t look right but when I tried on this dress I was instantly happy. I was a little unsure, as I always am with annnything I try on, and sent out the pic below out into Instagram land, where you lovely people convinced me that not only do I want this dress, I need it.
I’m usually not comfortable in dresses – they never seem to fit right on my body. Whether it’s the waist being too high or too low, or too much fabric between the shoulder blades. Ignoring the fact that I was too lazy to take off my jeans and boots, this dress just worked! It is soooo comfy but also cute and swingy, and form-fitting where I want it to be form-fitting, aka not on my belly. Anything that squishes my belly = a not happy Julia. But fitted on the top and loose past the waist, that’s key. Plus, this color! I am so tired of my black wardrobe that this would instantly brighten any day.
Here is how I would wear it:
J.Crew Ponte swing dress | Dara Ettinger Alanna Stud Earrings | Warby Parker Thatcher Walnut Tortoise Sunglasses | Chanel Rouge Allure Velvet Luminous Matte Lip Color | Cole Haan Village Skinny Belt | Coach Legacy Leather Double Accordian Zip | Gap Printed Pointy Flats
My style is very simple with a touch of edge and mostly focused on classic pieces. It’s very easy to pair poppy red with browns but I knew I wanted to add another color and some print. The leopard flats were the perfect fit for this, and the tortoise shell glasses tie in that need for print in two places. Of course, in the time it took me to make this collage, the Gap flats in leopard were no longer available on the US site. Another great option would be these animal print flats from Madewell.
Initially, I thought I would pair the dress with a braided belt but it was too casual for this specific look, especially with the mint bag. Mint is one of those colors that can be worn day or night and the patent belt dressed it up. Dan suggested dark studs with gold and was really surprised by the rough agate – he reacted with, “those aren’t expensive at all,” which is like a, “hey, buy these” in Dan-speak. And then is was time to decide on lipstick. I imagine this dress looking best with a fresh, luminous face, neutral eyes and a punched up neutral on the lips. The Chanel matte finish lipstick comes in a variety of colors that aren’t too red, pink, or coral but bright enough for this dress.
Dan and I got into an argument about pairing a jacket or sweater with this dress. His view is that this isn’t a dress you wear with something over it. My view, is that we live in drizzly Seattle so wearing a jacket is unavoidable. You need to have a plan no matter what. The obvious choice is a cardigan, but once I get ahold of this dress I am going to experiment and try on jackets to give you more options.
If you’re wondering what colors to wear with poppy red, just check out Pantone’s spring 2013 color report. All of these colors work together beautifully. When I was making the collage I thought yellow would look great with poppy, but yellow isn’t true to my style so I played around with cobalt/dark blue and mint, which are more me. But you have more options than you may realize.