Help: I don't know what to wear with this dress.

I just made this dress for myself on a whim--I had just barely enough fabric (it was $1.99 for the whole piece at Goodwill a while back) and got creative with the cute buttons and contrast straps.  I had a different vision for it than how it came out, somehow--it is more Lara Croft Tomb Raider and less funky Free People-ey than I had hoped.  I need help with how to wear it!

It was a combination of the top half of the bodice of my fave McCall's strapless dress standby:

And the midrif panel from my fave Butterick dress:
And the skirt from my fave Simplicity/Cynthia Rowley dress (pleated instead of gathered):

Anyway.  I worry about this dress's identity.  How can I make it look cute?

My only (ONLY!) thought was to pair it with a cute Anthro-ey cardigan in a soft, warm color and mix it up with some fun textures in accessories.  I looked around their site and found these options:

A cute and funky cardi:
A narrowish belt over:
And some bright wedges or clogs or something:

But, of course, I don't own any of those items.  So I still don't really know what to put with it.  What do you recommend??

How can I take it from video game hottie to shabby chic summer stylista? ;)

24 comments

  1. I love hilary duff patterns! hah, I'm glad i am not the only one who uses them :) I think the dress is cute!

    ReplyDelete
  2. maybe try some fabric covered buttons in a fun fabric like polka dots? and maybe do the same to the straps? I think it's cute.

    ReplyDelete
  3. What about a shrug? Like something in a poppy color that hits half way down the rib cage. It would show of your waste but still cover your shoulders.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I would get rid of the buttons... just not digging them. I would agree about paring it with a bright coloured cardi.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I second AnniinBC on the polka dots fabric...and maybe some ruffles on the sleeves and the bottom. If you didn't want to change the look I think just a little but of trim at the bottom to match the straps would make it cute and office-appropriate!

    ReplyDelete
  6. How about shabby chic Victorian-style? Like a toned-down Steampunk. Vintage-style tarnished metal chandelier earrings, metallic gladiator sandals, and a big bohemian tote might do the trick.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Is it a greenish gray? I'd pair it with a cute pair of black cork heels. Like these http://tinyurl.com/3qzdsyl or these http://tinyurl.com/3hoohbe

    I like the belts, but the buttons are funky enough for the dress so it's not necessary. I would use a sweater but a flowy black one, like a bolero, or a really long black one with large pockets.

    That's a super cute dress! I really wish I had it! I'm sure you'll find something to wear with it, but I'd wear black.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Anonymous6/08/2011

    You could always underlayer, bright pop of color from a tank top :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. It's almost jumper-y so you could wear a shirt UNDER it if you're daring. I love layering sheer shirts under dresses like this. I also would nix the buttons...there's something weird about them.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I'm both with a colorful cardi/shrug and with wearing a cute shirt under it. Another way of adding color would be a thin, colorful scarf or a combination of a brightly colored belt with coordinating accessoires...

    ReplyDelete
  11. Shirts under/cardis over (or even little bolero style cardis sounds nice).

    If you fancy a belt add some black belt loops that would hold a thin belt-but think about weairng it with a big colourful scarf threaded through them and tied to poof like mad at the side, if you want somthing to mix it up bit

    ReplyDelete
  12. i think it's a...dorable. but it does need a little something more. a belt would look good. but so would some super cute shoes. you could do the belt & some flats for a dress down look & some rockin shoes & maybe a brooch for a night out?! idk, i think anyway you wear it will be pretty! :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. Anonymous6/08/2011

    I will second the fabric covering of the buttons and the ruffle sleeves, it is just missing something on the top!

    ReplyDelete
  14. A few commenters beat me to my suggestion. I think you should switch out the black straps and buttons for ones in a different fabric - something bright or light, maybe a floral. You could do a different shape strap, or find some other spot to add contrast, like the hem. I might go with smaller buttons, too.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I would embrace it's Laura Croft-iness and pair it with a black belt and some tall boots or combat boots...but that's just me.

    ReplyDelete
  16. oh, love the buttons! my first thought was boots but if you are going summer, i like the idea of wedges or flats. a bright colored necklace would be fun and i like the idea of some kind of light cardi over it. fun.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thanks so much for all these great suggestions, ladies!!

    For me shoes make the outfit so I will have to start by trying it with different shoes from my closet... and if that doesn't help, maybe switch the straps and buttons...

    ReplyDelete
  18. I'd change the color of the straps and buttons into pink or lime green. I don't think it would still look video-game like :)

    ReplyDelete
  19. That dress is already cute! I love it.

    ReplyDelete
  20. The color looks charcoal to me so I would pair it with bright or deep reds. Some pumps, bangles, and maybe some lace or small ruffles peeking from the top. Great job! I love the buttons! Makes it look like it would be great for the office too!

    ReplyDelete
  21. I love it, especially the buttons that some others don't seem to like. Having colored buttons and straps would be fun, but it would make it less versatile. I think adding color with a narrow belt and/or bright warm-colored cardigan would be good because you can change them up to change the entire outfit.

    ReplyDelete
  22. I think it is cute as is, but to make it a little more summery, I would switch the buttons out with something with color, also a nice peek-a-boo layer under the skirt would be cute. However, you can always go simple and get bright chunky bangles.

    ReplyDelete
  23. hey, i dont want to sound too meddle-y, but those straps really feel unneccessary. if you go for a strapless effect and pair with with a really fun scarf at the neck, it ll look great! (i am partial to scarves, hehe :-) then you can just dress it up with some dangly earrings.

    ReplyDelete
  24. This dress would love the unwedding yellow DIY dyed shoes. And maybe a happy cardie or scarf.

    ReplyDelete

Leaving a comment is easy, and I love to read them! No annoying word verification required. =)

© Create / Enjoy • Theme by Maira G.