Summer essential: Maxi

As the hazy, hot, sticky days of summer continue, one upside is that it's maxi dress weather.  This is one item that I hold off on wearing until the thick of summer is really upon us.  There's nothing comfier than a maxi during the hot months.  It makes my heart happy every year when I switch my closet from winter to summer and all the maxis come out.  

As much as I look forward to wearing maxis to the office, it can be tricky finding the perfect style that isn't too dressy or too casual.  Maxis can also be great for a summertime wedding, but in my opinion what's considered fancy enough for a wedding shouldn't be worn to the office.  Similarly, maxis are one of my go-tos for casual weekend barbecues or as a bathing suit coverup.  These maxis are off limits for Monday-Friday wear.  

This particular maxi is wonderful because it offers coverage on top, but it's still incredibly comfortable and light weight--my ideal criteria for an office maxi. On this day, this was a perfect option.  In addition to it being extremely hot, I'm covering one of the worst sunburns of my life.  Can you tell in the picture? It was a poorly applied sunscreen and weird cutout bathing suit scenario.  

One thing to note on this dress:  The outer layer is see-through chiffon over a shorter black slip dress.  The slip dress it came with is also see-through!  Luckily I caught it before I left the apartment, and I had another black slip dress on hand that paired well.  Wearing unintentional see-through clothing to the office is something I hope to never do...again. 

Since I stand at 5'1'' on a good day, maxi's tend to run long on me.  My first stop is the petite section to avoid alterations.  There's nothing worse than a maxi dragging on the ground.  Also, determine if you plan to wear heels with the dress.  If you  walk to work, consider your commute when you make the heels/no heels decision.  I once found myself holding up a maxi skirt the entire walk to work.  It was awkward.  Another short girl secret: this dress is actually labeled midi length but fits me more like a maxi--OK by me, since I'm not stepping on it!

If I've talked you into adding a maxi to your summer wardrobe, pay close attention to the cut and prints.  Flowy skirts are a requirement for me, but I still find styles that cinch at the waist or pair well with a belt to define the waist.  Additionally, maxis have a lot of fabric.  Stick with toned-down or solid prints and colors.  Large floral patterns in bright colors can be overwhelming in a maxi, especially in the office.  

I plan to wear as many maxis as possible over the next couple of months.  Let the temperature climb and the skirts flow!

Outfit breakdown:

  • Paisley print dress:  Target's Who What Wear line for $34.99 (also available in a red paisley print and in plus sizes)
  • Black sandals:  Splendid (Similar lace up option also by Splendid for $157.95.  Another option by Madewell for $158)

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