These Are The Best Dresses For Practically Every Occasion

From ruffles to polka dots and everything in between.

best dresses (1)

by Marina Avraam |
Updated on

Dare we say it? Dress season is finally here. Cue the sigh of relief. As we excitedly store away our cashmere jumpers and puffer jackets in favour of light cardigans and denim jackets, the question on everyone's mind is - inevitably - what are the best dresses to shop this season, and where can we shop them? Thankfully, we have all the answers.

From floral organza spring dresses to figure-shaping bandage dresses which recently made their comeback (thanks Y2K) there is no event that a dress can't do. Even if you're a power suit or jeans-and-a-top kind of person, it's likely you'll have owned one dress in your lifetime to pull out when the occasion rises. Special occasions such as weddings, birthdays and christenings seem to launch a never-ending search for a dress that can cycle in and out of events effortlessly, a task that can prove challenging, to put it mildly. But not anymore.

©Photo by Victor Boyko/Getty Images

You don't need to look far for inspiration on what dresses are in at the moment. London Fashion Week showcased an eclectic mix of dress trends; from rose-petalled numbers showcased by Alexander McQueen, Balmain and (of course) Simone Rocha, to bold metallics as seen on the runways of Roksanda, Schiaparelli, the spectrum varied from romantic to brazen. Unsurprisingly, craftier 'upcycled' dresses were also seen in the form of Bottega Veneta's striking top-to-bottom mesh crochet dress and Rokh's fringed designs, while over at Coperni and Dior sheer angel-white dresses took centre stage.

©Photo by Estrop/Getty Images

So, whether you favour a floral maxi dress or keep things cool in a satin slip dresses, there are some of the dresses that you always need on your radar (and in your wardrobe). From mini to maxi, here are all the best dresses you should invest in now.

SHOP: The Best Dresses To Wear 2024

This brilliant pink satin number from Zara is top of our list this spring/summer reason. It's already selling out in some sizes, so be quick.

We expect this polka dot number from M&S will be the sell-out item this season.

Brown is arguably the most versatile colour of them all, just as suitable for autumn and winter as it is for spring and summer. Add the Other Stories's cap-sleeve satin midi to your wardrobe for a dress you can wear all year long.

Whistles, Flower Diamond Kimmy Dress
Price: £105 (was £149)

The Kimmy dress is so '60s, it hurts. The perfect choice for a picnic in the park, or impending summer BBQs.

Mango's sheer catalogue of dresses is impressive, and this velvet sage green dress may just be the brand's best kept secret.

2024 is the year of the leopard print resurgence, and Zara has hit the nail on the head with this little ruffled number.

If you're wondering how to incorporate black into your summer outfits, take notes from COS's dropped waist flowy midi dress

The brand adored by Kate Middleton and co, this ME+EM knit dress is the best-seller of the week.

There may be no wardrobe finished without a classic Rixo dress, the brand known for its prints. It's no surprise that the Sandrine dress is one of the bestsellers, with a classic v-neckline and navy polka dot that will see you from summer BBQs to winter weddings.

A special piece, this is short puffed hem dress is from Mango's selection collection consisting of high-quality, well-crafted pieces.

Boden, Scoop Neck Shift Dress
Price: £28 (was £70)

A shift dress is key for the hottest days of the year, and this navy patterned dress from Boden is our favourite pick. Pair with your favourite sandals, or a pair of white sneakers.

The Evie dress by Rixo is essentially summer in a dress, and available six different patterns.

The perfect holiday dress doesn't exi-... Say hello to the Dulcie midi from White Stuff, which is practically begging to accompany you to your next Greek beach holiday, city break or UK staycation.

Karen Millen, Structured Crepe Forever Pleat Belted Midi Dress
Price: £186 (was £219)

Looking for a suitable work dress that will last you for years to come? Karen Millen's your best guess. The structured crepe belted midi dress simply screams sophistication.

This season, it's all about embracing vibrant hues and playful silhouettes. Think bold floral prints, romantic ruffles, and statement sleeves. Midi dresses remain a wardrobe staple, while slip dresses are making a major comeback for their effortless elegance. Don't forget to explore the charm of puff sleeves and asymmetrical hemlines for an added touch of flair.

How can I style a dress for both day and night?

One word - accessories. During the day, opt for casual accessories like a straw hat and woven sandals for a relaxed aesthetic, and as the sun sets, elevate your look with strappy heels, statement jewellery, and a clutch. Layering with a denim jacket or a tailored blazer adds versatility, ensuring you're ready for any occasion.

Marina Avraam is the Deputy Commercial Content Editor for Grazia. Hobbies include (but not limited to) finding the best designer dupes, buying every iteration of the adidas gazelles and listening to celeb podcasts every hour of every day.

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