As my tastes tend to skew on the classic and preppy side, I have a wealth of navy-and-white striped dresses and tees in my closet. (Four dresses and six tops, to be specific.)
Black-and-white stripes are less preppy and more universally adored by individuals across the fashion spectrum. However, when I step out in black-and-white stripes, I sometimes fear I look like I’m wearing prison uniform. Case in point: Three years ago I purchased a beautiful, black-and-white striped Diane von Furstenburg wrap dress. I have worn it but once.
The cost-per-wear on that dress is infuriating—and unsustainable.
Now, it’s damn near impossible to go wrong with a DVF wrap dress. They’re made well, flatter nearly all figures, and tow the line between fashionable and classic. The wrap dress is the quintessential fashion classic—so much so that the dress just celebrated its 25th birthday with an epic party in Los Angeles with the world’s most fashionable in attendance.
Yes, you heard that right, there was a birthday party for a dress.
Despite the wonders of the DVF wrap dress, no matter how many times I try on my striped wrap dress, I feel like a character in Orange is the New Black. And, while I’ve heard the show is great, I just can’t leave the house feeling like a police officer may come by and try to take me back to jail—where I clearly belong, based on my ensemble.
I’ve tried accessorizing: leopard shoes, a tribal necklace, a turquoise necklace. Nothing does the trick. The dress sits in my closet as a fashion failure I just can’t seem to fix.
Thus, I’ve come to the conclusion that black-and-white striped dresses need a little something extra beyond the stayed, singular repeating stripe. Whether it’s sequin stripes, leather pockets, baseball-style solid sleeves, piping, a thick hemline, or figure-flattering variations in the stripe, you need to provide the added pizzazz that a government-issued incarceration facility won’t provide.
Take a look at these fun frocks at a variety of price points and try to tell me I’m wrong. Because bad stripes should be a crime.