By Gretta Monahan
If it’s true that half of all success in life is just planning ahead, then now’s the time to go out and buy a really pretty dress. OK, I’ll explain.
If you’re at all like me, you tend to spend most of your time leading up to the spring events and holidays (Easter, Passover, Mother’s Day, graduation parties, baby and wedding showers… ) making plans to get everyone together, maybe trying to get away for April vacation, and taking care of everyday work and/or family needs. Then along come the actual celebrations and—bam!—you suddenly realize that you’ve got virtually nothing to wear that’s either fun or spring-appropriate. All your spring clothes are usually all still packed away from last year, and your hopes of buying something new are diminished, since retailers are already lining their racks with the summer collections.
So do yourself a solid and jump on it now. That’s an especially brilliant idea, considering that the spring sales are on, and will be going strong through the next few weeks. The inventory out there is still robust, and since you’ll most likely wear any spring dresses through summer, it’s also a smart longer-term buy.
Bloomingdales’ current stock is filled with affordable, pretty pieces—like Wayf’s Only You Ruffle Wrap Dress ($109), a flowy vision of spring in solid mint green, with swaths of transparency at its bottom hem. Or go in for more petals, with a frock like Maje’s Floral-print Ruffled Midi Dress ($272). Its hot-colored orange and peach daisies, bright green leaves, and white gardenias against a black background are a refreshing jolt of high-energy femininity. All at bloomingdales.com.
Lord and Taylor’s current sale has tons of little L.B.D.s that are the perfect thing to reach for year-round (including the winter holidays), like Karl Lagerfeld Paris’s long-sleeved Choker Collar Dress ($49.99), or Calvin Klein’s Buckle Wrap Dress ($49.99). But the warm weather numbers are just as plentiful. Florals like the Jersey Bell-sleeve dress in royal blue, black, and white with high-energy shots of green by Lauren Ralph Lauren ($89.99) and Tahari’s Brush Floral Scuba Sheath ($89.99) dress—a beautiful cascade of bright petals on a pale pink silhouette—will catch glances at any event. All at lordandtaylor.com.
Sometimes lighthearted lace is just the thing for a spring celebration, in which case H&M’s Lace Dress ($79.99) is the ideal choice. Its midi length, v-neck, and shoulder straps make it appropriate for all kinds of gatherings, from dates and weddings to baby showers and cocktail parties. For more relaxed family holidays, there’s the loose-fitting, Creped Dress ($49.99)—a swing-cut design covered in bold pink flowers and electric green ferns. All at hm.com.
Target’s in on the bloom trend, too—with relaxed designs like the Chiasson Women’s Floral Maxi Dress ($39.99) in purple, covered in lavender, blue and magenta flowers. Or tap into a deep pink vibe with the Women’s Floral V-Neck Ruffle Tie Waist Dress by Alison Andrews ($49.99). The combo of its above-the-knee fit and flare skirt and rosy hue is as big a nod to spring as it gets. All at target.com.