A “mini” history lesson today.  A shift dress is a simple, short silhouette accented by darts on the front bust and a straight or slightly A-line hem.  The neckline is typically either a high boatneck or crewneck and there is no definition at the waist.   This very simple shift was first credited to Hubert de Givenchy as he designed most of Audrey Hepburn’s wardrobe- including that oh so iconic black shift she wore in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. The dress was later made popular by Lilly Pullitzer when she wore the dress while selling fresh squeezed fruit juice (I’m not kidding) roadside in Palm Beach, Florida.  The image that comes to my mind, however, is Twiggy in a shift dress.  She was hired at 16 to model the shape for Mary Quant who had shortened the hemline to about six inches above the knee.

Despite the simplicity of this shape, it doesn’t work for every body.  Bigger busted ladies may have a harder time slipping into this shift.  It works best on boyish figures and is a fantastic choice for you ladies with great gams.

1. Rogan for Target Leopard Print Shift Dress, $39.99, 2. Missoni Paneled Zig Zag Knit Shift Dress, $1,600, 3. Ali Ro Stripe Knit Shift Dress, $206, 4. J. Crew Cotton Blend Shift Dress, $120, 5. Thakoon for Target Colorblock Shift Dress, $39.99, 6. Tibi Zip Back Ponte Shift Dress, $293, 7. Free People Colorblock Shift Dress, $138, 8. Milly Maggie Shift Dress, $370, 9. Jenni Kayne Zip Front Shift Dress, $595, 10. Michael Kors Leather Trim A-Line Canvas Shift  Dress, $1,495




Photo via Cemetarian