How To Style One Dress Five Different Ways

Every fashion lover has many different garments in their closet and they try out different styles and combinations every day. Although, only a true fashion maniac knows we often need just a few smart basic pieces which will help us look amazing every single time. I decided to share with you some of my best tips and tricks on how to style a single piece of clothing for multiple occasions, without anyone noticing. Check out my tips and tricks to look chic with your favorite basic dress.

Basic Rules

First of all, your basic dress should really be – basic. This means no accentuated details, or no bold colors. Opt for black, navy or burgundy (depending on what you prefer). This dress is the background item, it’s your accessory choices that really matter. A perfect example of a timeless basic dress can be found within the amazing Shona joy dresses, which are my favorite.

Make sure that this dress suits you 100% – it has to hug your body, accentuate all your good features and hide the bad ones.

Adjust for the Occasion

Now here comes the interesting part, check out some of the most common occasions where you will be able to wear the hell out of your dress, but look completely different every time.

Weekend Rocker

Style basic dress for weekend

Since your dress is so cool and casual, but also extravagant when combined with the right accessories, it has to be suitable for a casual stroll around the park with your boyfriend, friends, or family. For this occasion, I like to wear my basic dress with my All Stars, denim jacket, hair tied up in a ponytail and a leather backpack. If you are not into sneakers, you can opt for ballet slippers or slip-on shoes. You can also put on a leather jacket if you are on the edgy side.


How to style a basic dress for work


Simplicity is key. Take your pointed toe heels and a blazer, put red lipstick and natural eye makeup and lift your hair into a neat bun. Your colleagues will admire your outfit and your style.

Corporate Party

Here you need to look fun, but also neat and serious. Lift your hair in a sophisticated bun, put your heels on and take your clutch bag with you. You might want to tone down the jewelry – a simple watch and maybe a nice slim necklace will be enough. Keep your makeup as soft as possible.

New Years Bling

How to style a basic dress for new years eve


When it comes to holiday parties, you are free to do whatever you want. After all, holidays are perfect for trying out new styles and combinations. I personally like to get classy and put on my high heels, a glamorous piece of statement jewelry, a cute blazer and pull out all the stops when it comes to my makeup. I’m talking contouring, smokey eye, blood red lips and even some sparkle if you dare. Also, another great combo is to put on a sequin blazer (an absolute hit this season) but then stay away from statement jewelry because it will be too much.

Date Night


There is one unwritten rule for date nights: SIMPLE DRESS AND STATEMENT EARRINGS, they just add some kind of romantic touch to everything. Plus, you already have your simple dress, right? Let your hair loose, keep your makeup soft (avoid strong lipsticks – kissing, hello!), put on a bootie or strappy sandals and you’re good to go.

Be creative and let your imagination do all the work. You will be amazed with how much wear you can get out of that perfect simple dress if you just know how to style it. 


Claire Hastings
Claire Hastings

Claire Hastings is a wanderer and a writer. She writes as long as she can remember, and she is very passionate about fashion, running, other cultures, and her cat.

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    • January 8, 2017 / 3:30 pm

      Thanks so much – yes it is so important to get the most out of your clothes and not spend when you don’t have to. That NYE look could really be applied to any party!

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