How to Create an Evening Wear Wardrobe with One Dress


Evening wear can be expensive, and for many of us, something we don’t wear that often, so it’s not wise to invest too much money into something that doesn’t warrant it – cost-per-wear – wise.

The easiest way to create a viable and effective evening wear wardrobe is to invest in one simple dress in a dark colour that flatters you (what I call the LDD or Little Dark Dress). Something without too much of its own embellishment is wise so that it’s easier then to dress it up or down, and change the look with beauty bundles.

Work that LBD

Here you can see the use of beauty bundles in different colours and different levels of refinement make the old LBD work hard, from catching up to an evening on the town, this is the easiest way to make your more formal clothes work hard for their space in your wardrobe.

how to create an evening wear wardrobe with one dress


Here is another example, with a lovely simple navy shift dress, just think about how it appears to be different depending what you put with it.  You can take it from desk to dinner, a night out at the theatre or a swanky cocktail party.  The simplicity of the dress is key in making it a really versatile piece.

Creating an evening wear wardrobe around one dress

Layering a wrap blouse makes it a appear like a skirt not a dress.  Changing the colours of your accessories makes them the focal point, not the dress.

The next time you’re invited to a wedding, a cocktail party, dinner at a fancy restaurant, if you’ve got your simple dress and accessories ready, you’re good to go without stressing about what to wear.

So if you’ve got lots of events on this festive season – what are you going to wear?

Further Reading:

5 Ways to Accessorise from day to night

One dress 6 ways

10 accessorizing tips you need to know

How to change your outfit just by changing your shoes




The Finishing Touch


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  • Merry Christmas, Imogen. Your holiday is very blessed with a lovely family, new home, and fans that appreciate you all year long. Thank you for your generous, giving heart, wonderful creative brain, and for sharing with us all through the year.
    Happy New Year!!
    A faithful fan,

  • I love this post! I rarely attend dressy functions any more (except for the occasional wedding ) so I always feel as if I’m frantically hunting for a dress to wear at the last minute – which I am usually not happy with. Then I feel like I either have to wear it to every other function that year to justify the price, or have a closet full of dresses I won’t wear again.. This is the ideal solution for me. Thanks!

  • Hi Imogen,
    As I have scars on my lower leg I tend to not wear dresses – so could this work with trousers and a good quality vest style top in navy or black as a base, then accessorise this way. (instead of the dress)
    It brought to mind something you did a long while ago with “beauty bundles” ?

    Any other way to make trousers dressy for a smart event or evening worthy ?
    Thanks for any tips.

    By the way, I’ve only worn a dress to a winter wedding wearing dark opaque tights and dressy heels – which was ok at that time of year . Not found normal tights thick enough for leg coverage in summer.
    Casual tunics are ok with leggings.

  • Hi Imogen, could this work with trousers and a good quality vest style top in navy or black as a base, then accessorise this way. (instead of the dress)

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