Now that our social calendars have officially reopened, we are using every outing as an opportunity to wear our favourite summer dresses inspired by the best fashion trends of 2021: shirt dresses, gingham checks, wavy prints, sheer fabrics, and calming lilac.
Shirt dresses became a summer sensation after With Jéan debuted its bestselling Andy Dress in the colour forest green. Soon after, Lori Harvey was spotted wearing the coveted summer item on Instagram, and the ruched shirt dress experienced a boost in popularity thanks to the buzz around Harvey’s new relationship with Michael B Jordan. Replicas of the With Jéan dress can be spotted all over our favourite high street retailers’ online shops, and we aren’t ashamed to say we’d love to add one to our collection as well.
Gingham dresses and summer go together like a picnic and a bottle of pale rosé wine. For summer 2021, gingham dresses are enjoying a revival because it’s a subtler take on two ubiquitous trends: checkered prints and the prairie aesthetic. We are also loving futuristic wavy prints (especially on sheer fabrics) that mimic the shape of water and are inspired by the nautical and mermaid trends from London Fashion Week spring/summer 2021. And if there’s one trend that might not surprise you, it’s calming lilac. Pastel prints have seen a surge in popularity since winter 2020, and it makes sense. Pastels are soothing, are calming, and make us feel inspired to make a fresh new start. Expect to see lots of lilac dresses at parks and pubs all summer, and if you’re keen on the trend, then we suggest going for a head-to-toe pastel outfit for a smart look with minimal effort.
Keep reading for 20 of the best dresses for summer 2021.