The 7 Timeless Dress Styles Everyone Needs in Their Wardrobe

As we hastily approach July, all we're thinking about when it comes to fashion is dresses and sandals. While we have the latter covered with these shoes that seem to be on every fashion girl right now, when it comes to dresses, it's a much different matter depending on your personal style and how much you want to spend. There are certain timeless dress styles, however, that look good on everyone and have an ability to last seasons. So what are we talking about when it comes to these types of dresses?

We've narrowed down seven different categories that we'd call timeless. The criteria are simple: They just have to be a particular silhouette. For example, a wrap dress or an off-the-shoulder frock are both examples of different styles of dresses. However, a little black dress isn't a style type as it could easily fit into both of these categories. Got that? The idea is that all these different styles will still be as popular and as flattering in the years to come, so you'll always be able to pull it out of the wardrobe and know you made a solid investment.

If you're after a frock that will last you years, keep scrolling to see the different styles and shop our edit of the best timeless dresses you can buy now.

#1: The Wrap Dress

Photo:

@katherine_ormerod

Style Notes: Ultra-flattering for all body types, wrap dresses have been around for over 40 years, first made iconic by Diane von Furstenburg in 1974. The idea was to accentuate the waist, which is great for hourglass figures, but also add definition to those with a more athletic body shapes. 

#2: The Slip Dress

Photo:

@pernilleteisbaek

Style Notes: A nod to the '90s, the slip dress will forever evoke images of Kate Moss, Courtney Love and Carrie Bradshaw. If you're looking for a sleek, minimalistic approach to dressing, the slip dress is perfect for you. Not 100% sold on the underwear-as-outerwear trend? Layer a T-shirt underneath in the summer or a roll-neck in winter.

#3: The Shirtdress

Photo:

@brittanybathgate

Style Notes: The shirtdress is a stylish answer to summer workwear, and it's perfect paired with pointed-toe mules in the boardroom or trainers for the weekend. If you want to be more directional, don't be afraid to exaggerate the shape of your shirtdress and go for something oversized with extra-long sleeves and/or statement cuffs.

#4: The Shift

Photo:

@eniswardrobe

Style Notes: The shift dress is great in black (hello, LBD) and is a super chic way to do the mini. The '60s-style frock is still incredibly popular and today there are plenty of versions to try. From long-sleeved high-neck pieces to the fun but simple white versions, don't dismiss this classic dress. 

#5: The Halter Neck

Photo:

@monikh

Style Notes: The halterneck was definitely having a quiet moment in fashion for a while, that was until Meghan Markle's second wedding dress made an appearance. As the popularity of this style starts to increase look to high street places and designers for a great investment. 

#6: The Off-the-Shoulder Dress

Photo:

@slipintostyle

Style Notes: All the rage in the early-to-mid 1800s, off-the-shoulder dresses have evolved from corseted gowns you might find in a painting in the V&A to the perfect casual summer piece. Talk about a long-lasting trend! An off-the-shoulder style will elongate your neck, and it's the perfect way to show off an amazing necklace or pair of statement earrings. If you're feeling adventurous and want to give your off-the-shoulder dress a transitional flair, think about pairing it with an white or blue button-down underneath.

#7: The Maxi Dress

Photo:

@wethepeoplestyle

Style Notes: If you're after the perfect throw-on dress with bohemian vibes, look no further than the maxi. A billowing one is perfect for work during the hot summer months, and it'll look effortless paired with simple leather sandals or flats. If you're looking for an evening dress with added elegance, the long lines of a maxi slip dress (the double-whammy of dress styles) will have you black-tie–ready with ease.