It would be an understatement to say that party dresses have been languishing in the back of our wardrobes for a considerable amount of time. Sure, we might have pulled them out for the odd birthday Zoom party or Christmas day when we wanted to be extra fancy but most of the time, even when we've been outside, we've stuck to jeans, a tee and maybe a blazer. Party dresses on the other hand have continued to be ignored. Well, no longer, we say! It's time to embrace joyful dressing. Whether or not you have any actual parties coming up, there are plenty of pub-, restaurant-, and picnic-ready frocks that are exactly what you need to lift your mood and break out of any style rut you might be experiencing.
I've gone through quite literally hundreds of dresses that are available right now and found 27 of the best that we'd describe as showstopping. I should point out that I've avoided too much sparkle or sequins as I think for summer most of us are after bold colours and frocks that are comfortable to walk around in if the weather is a little warmer. There's nothing chic about sweating in a party dress.
With this in mind, I've found a range of dresses from minis to maxis that will work for any occasion. If you are managing to get to a wedding, any of the below will work. But if you're just after something to wow friends for drinks, then we've also got that covered. Keep scrolling for more.
Cos Gathered Dress (£59)
This might be a simple-looking dress but thanks to the stunning colour and the delicate ruching, it's one to snap up.
Ghost Luna Floral Print Dress (£169)
Ghost never fails to create garden party dresses.
Kitri Marcia Pink Shirred Cotton Dress (£145)
One of the hottest colours of the year so far.
& Other Stories Voluminous Scoop Neck Midi Dress (£95)
Pair with gold jewellery for added oomph.
Kai Collective Bea Dress Ginger (£120)
How great is this colour?
Ganni Gathered Metallic Jacquard Midi Dress (£205)
Want to go a bit out-there? Ganni has your back.
H&M Fringed-Covered Dress (£100)
This is exactly what we want to wear for all upcoming parties.
Finery London Chiffon Floral High Neck Midi Tea Dress (£69)
One to wear with strappy heels.
16arlington Madrid Michelle Feather-Trim Mini Dress (£650)
16Arlington's take on party wear always feels fun.
Khaite Nina Notched-Neck Ribbed-Knit Midi Dress (£830)
Self-Portrait Tiered Floral-Print Fil Coupé Plissé-Crepe De Chine Midi Dress (£350)
Super pretty vibes from Self-Portrait.
Faithfull the Brand + Net Sustain Rianne Tie-Detailed Polka-Dot Linen Midi Dress (£279)
A more beachy style from Faithfull the Brand but great for warmer summer evenings.
Reformation + Net Sustain Jonah Knotted Cutout Plissé-Jersey Dress (£190)
Another simple dress but will look knock-out with chunky accessories.
Rixo Lolita Cutout Floral-Print Cotton Mini Dress (£195)
Minis are making a comeback.
Alessandra Rich Blue Polka-Dot Silk Midi Dress (£1520)
If you've got budget to spend, then don't overlook K-Kid favourite Alessandra Rich.
Rotate Birger Christensen Natalie Bow-Embellished Satin Mini Dress (£330)
This dress was made for partying.
A classic wedding guest dress if we ever saw one.
Arket Printed Tunic Dress (£99)
Knee-high boots would work wonders with this dress.
Mango Polka-Dot Dress With Ruffles (£70)
How pretty is this?
Zara Satin Midi Dress (£28)
Go slinky with Zara.
Another vibrant colour we can't get enough of.
Square-necks always look so elegant.
Omnes Blouson Sleeve Midi Dress in Pink Grid Print (£75)
Another great option for wedding guests.
Uterqüe Linen Shirt Dress (£155)
Shirt dresses aren't usually party dresses but this one is. It's all in the slit.
Mango Puffed Sleeves Dress (£80)
If in doubt go for black.
Marques'Almeida Feather-Trimmed Distressed Denim Mini Dress (£430)
Aje Cascada Cutout Pleated Cotton Midi Dress (£445)
This brand is getting a lot of attention right now, and for good reason.
Next up, the biggest spring/summer 2021 fashion trends to know.
This article originally appeared on Who What Wear
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