The Wrap Dress

diane-von-furstenberg-wrap-dressNearly 40 years ago, Diane von Fürstenberg created the wrap dress, one of the most iconic styles of women’s clothing. Since bringing the dress back in favor in 1997, von Fürstenberg has expanded her fashion business into a full lifestyle brand, but the wrap dress remains her crowning achievement.

Diane von Fürstenberg runway A/W '13. (Source:
Diane von Fürstenberg runway A/W ’13. (Source:

The wrap dress is one of the most versatile, flattering items a woman can own. It is the go-to for those busy, work-to-play days; it has a pretty, but not overly revealing neckline; and it defines your waist and contours your lines. But while the wrap dress c’est magnifique on most figures (particularly, hourglass and rectangle shapes), it’s not for everyone. Interestingly, in his book, “Real Style: Style Secrets for Real Women with Real Bodies,” style expert Sam Saboura warns the dress is “no go” for diamonds (wide shoulders, big bust, and narrow hips) and pears (small on top, heavy on bottom), because it draws the eye to the unbalanced proportions. Also, if you’re timid about wrapping your every curve in fabric, create smoothness with a body shaper.

Future Queens, First Ladies, and Celebrities wear wrap dresses too!
Future Queens, First Ladies, and celebrities wear wrap dresses too!

The traditional wrap dress is typically made of jersey knit, which makes it more suitable for business casual and casual work environments. There, you can probably get away with wearing the dress as-is, and just add a couple of accessories (and killer shoes) to complete the look. A soft jacket is a great layer piece for lunch or staff meetings. To sharpen for a more business-like appeal, wear with a structured, contrasting color blazer.

An original DVF wrap dress is beautiful and luxurious, but can set you back $300-$500+.  You may find a vintage DVF on eBay or a past-season dress at a designer consignment shop. Good thing is, many designers and retailers offer a wrap style at more appealing price points. Here are some of work-worthy wrap dresses under $100.

Style Inspiration – It’s a Wrap

Banana Republic Gemma wrap dress, $98 (Source:
Ann Taylor wrap dress, $98 (Source: Ann Taylor)
Therapy Ikat print wrap dress, $56 (Source:
Kiyonna sweatheart wrap dress, $98 (Source:
Kiyonna sweetheart wrap dress, $98 (Source:
Maggy London plaid wrap dress, $98 (Source:
Maggy London plaid wrap dress, $98 (Source:

Enjoy your week ahead!

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