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Vintage dresses – vintage dress styles to suit your silhouette

February 14, 2017

Finding the perfect dress is different for everyone and if we understand our body shape and how to pick the right style, we feel ultimately more body confident and ready to show off a statement look. Vintage dresses are often very different sizes to the modern sizing guides we use on today’s high street.

Women’s Vintage dresses

Vintage Dresses

Vintage Dresses


In previous decades women had different shapes and clothing was cut in a variety of ways to accentuate areas of the body. Now that’s not saying that due to modern sizing you’ll find it difficult to find vintage clothing that fits, far from it. There are plenty of vintage dresses in different styles. Each will suit a range of shapes offering you a beautiful and flattering look from day to evening wear.


Take a look at some of the most common body shapes and our guide on how to style a vintage dress that works perfectly with your silhouette.

Vintage dresses – Hourglass shapes

Hourglass shapes

Hourglass shapes


Deep Purple

Deep Purple


Now ladies this shape should have no trouble finding the perfect dress as you have the shape most women would trade for.  Dresses that are fitted or body contouring suit you best.


For a full effect having a V-neck or scooping neckline will also highlight your bosom area.  You can also carry off bold block colours but if you want to play it safe choose a darker tone until you find your feet with this style.


Vintage dresses in a range of styles and periods will suit this versatile shape. Anything from pretty prom styles dresses that nip in the waist and float perfectly over your hips are a fabulous look.  Wiggle dresses also accentuate this outline with body contouring shapes and elegant necklines.

Vintage dresses – Apple shape

Dresses with apple shapes - 80s-White-Silk-Dress

80s White Silk Dress


For apple shapes the beautiful wrap dress is the perfect go to style. This brilliantly balancing style highlights your shoulders and skims the waist for a sophisticated look. V-neck dresses are great for enhancing your chest area too. This style is perfectly paired with a statement pendant as it adds a focal point to this incredible look.


If you want to make your waist look trimmer go for fuller skirts to balance your figure out. There are lots of vintage wrap dresses that look fantastic for apple ladies. Why not opt for a figure skimming wiggle wrap? This style creates texture and structure whilst emphasising your neckline.


Choose from a variety of materials and colours to create a stunning look.  Lurex fabrics offer the perfect party outfit and give you that screen siren glamour to your wardrobe.

Vintage dresses – Pear shape

Pear shape - 50s Cotton Multicoloured

50s Cotton Multicoloured


Ladies that are pear-shaped often look to balance out the shoulder area. Wrap style dresses are fabulous for achieving this. A-Line skirts with volume at the hemline and skim the hips will also aid balancing out your curvier bottom half.


It’s a great idea to create detail at your shoulder in the form of cap-sleeves or V-necklines as this will create volume and curves. Vintage and retro dresses that work wonders for your silhouette include the pretty tea dress and stylish A-line styles.


Vintage tea dresses are great for day wear and offer cute detailing on the shoulders with cap sleeves and floaty fabrics. A-line Vintage dresses boast perfect structure and give you a fabulous choice for evening wear.

Vintage dresses – Athletic and rectangle shape

Athletic and rectangle shape - 50s-White-Lace-Party-dress

50s White Lace Party dress



80s Rose Pink Party Dress


For ladies with this shape, you may want to add volume and curvature to your frame. You don’t want to overwhelm your figure in texture or fabric but creating some focal points in an outfit can offer some great style choices.


Vintage dresses that fit perfectly with this are prom style vintage dresses, as they give you that added volume and are also very feminine.  Prints and colour blocking on dresses can work well too as it gives the illusion of looking broader but not masculine.  Vintage clinching belts are also ideal for highlighting tiny waists too.

Vintage shapewear

Shapewear - Cire 80s dress

Cire 80s dress


For many being confident in what you are wearing is vital and some added elements to perfecting your style can be achieved by making sure you have suitable underwear.


Vintage underwear or shapewear is ideal for complementing your vintage dress. Shapewear has been around for many years and was first made popular by the 1920s corset structures. This innovation back in the early 20th century now includes more relaxed and figure smoothing fabrics. They complement wiggle styles and offer structure to prom style dresses.

Vintage hosiery

If you’re looking for the perfect support, choose a stunning bra from a vintage decade. Famous bras from the 1950s included the infamous Wonderbra and the first pointed bustier from Christian Dior.  If you’re looking for some glamorous hosiery to cover your legs under a vintage dress, there are plenty of fabulous examples to choose from. For a sensual or evening wear look opt for stockings or fishnet tights.


For classic looks and wearable day styles, there are plenty of patterned, textures and coloured examples available. These pieces look spectacular under vintage dresses and offer a stunning all over vintage style.


Vintage offers a spectacular style choice for your wardrobe whatever the season. There are a range of perfect designs that work for day and evening wear that you can mix and match for versatile looks.


Vintage dresses give you a pretty choice in feminine cuts and elegant styles. Each dress gives a unique look and offers the wearer an individual style. If you love creating a distinctive look with a contemporary twist, these dresses are great for matching with modern accessories and footwear.

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