As some of you may know, if you follow me on various social media sites, I graduated university with a 2:1 in Psychology (literally two marks away from a first but I’m not bitter about that…). Now, an important aspect of graduation is what to wear for the big day. This post will show you exactly what I wore and about the dress.
I like to do my research before any big event, what’s expected of me, what usually happens and what is appropriate to wear. Considering it’s graduation and I had been to my brother’s graduation many years prior, I knew that smart, formal and business-like was the way to go, which leads me to the dress I had in mind. A friend at university owned this dress in red, often wore it for a night out and it always looked stunning which is why I was inclined to try it myself.
This is the Rosie Panelled bodycon midi dress, available online at Boohoo for £8 (reduced from £20) in UK sizes 14-16 in various colours. However, this dress was previously available in a lot of other colours and sizes, hence my size 18 black dress. As such I have found a similar version in more colours but still limited on the size.
I have never ordered from boohoo before, I’ve never worn a midi dress before (I’ve always felt that they don’t make my legs look great) and I’ve definitely never worn a bandage style bodycon dress. But then again I’ve never graduated before either so it’s a first all round.
There are no zips, buttons or any form of fastenings that helps get this dress on with ease. The material has some stretch to it which makes it slightly easier but getting this dress on, to me, felt like a work out. The issue I had when putting this dress on was getting it past my bust without it scrunching up on itself, and then getting it past my hips. This dress is figure hugging so I was hoping for a bit more stretch but ah well, the dress does go on. I will say that getting the dress off, is slightly easier but still rather difficult (especially if you have been drinking prior, trust me).
I do love the overall design of the dress, if I didn’t I wouldn’t have wanted it in the first place. I like how the neckline isn’t too plunging but has a bit of reveal to show off the girls, it’s part of what makes this dress versatile for night outs and for a more smart look for work (Obviously depending on the work). My favourite part of this dress would have to be the straps; they are thick straps (Which I love) that become wider at the top and lead to a cut out back which considering I had a gown to wear for graduation, meant I wasn’t going to overheat.
The bust I have mixed feelings on. Part of me really likes that it pushes the girls together to get more cleavage than usual, but the issue with that is it actually flattens them as well as it’s squeezing them in, so from the side it doesn’t look at all attractive or right. However, the design of the bust section I like, it’s got thinner panels that curve which gives it that bit more detailing, though it would have been better had it continued for another panel or so to ensure the bust area was made up entirely of the smaller panels. The issue that I have on this upper section is also that the dress feels like it’s cutting up into the armpits. Whereas after a while I don’t notice it, because usually my armpits have a lot more space to breathe (either lower cut or via baggy clothing), I can definitely feel it when I first put it on to the point I do think about making alterations.
With the waist I’m a bit annoyed at, and this is probably the most annoying thing about this dress, beating the armpit issue. It’s meant to be a tight dress, and trust me it is on the hips and bust, but on the waist, I have a lot of loose fabric on the sides. I wouldn’t say that I have a perfect hourglass figure, but my waist is a lot smaller than my bust or hips, resulting in this issue with a lot of clothing. On the front of the tummy it does cling because I do have a tummy (Surprisingly easy to say that and not get upset nowadays), but on the sides the fabric is about an inch or two too big which lets it down a bit considering the design and purpose of the dress. I think if the dress was smaller but had a lot more stretch, this would help the problem of the waist, getting it on/off, and the tightness on the bust/hips. From half way down the bust to the end of the dress the panels do become chunkier and consistent in size.
Lastly the hips and skirt part of the dress…As previously said, the hips were rather tight but that’s kinda the point of that style of dress. It’s not an uncomfortable tight by any means, but it does mean that an outline of the underwear will show, which gives two options:
- Wear tights/something to smooth your shape (My choice)
- Go without underwear (My friend’s choice)
The bumps due to the stitching of the dress for each panel does somewhat show when wearing, leaving an odd bump along the silhouette, a minor detail though. Regarding the length of the dress, I do rather like the midi style, but it’s still ended up being slightly above the knee than on it, as expected really due to my height. It’s nice to know that from the front, my legs don’t look too bad, the back still not sure about.
From the back photo and the photo on the right you can see that the bra I’m currently wearing is visible, it’s a simple t-shirt bra. With this dress, I would say that a strapless bra would be best, but because of the tightness of the bust area, you may be able to get away with a little bit of tape and nipple coverings if you would like. I’d say it depends on whether you’re bothered by bra straps showing and whether you fancy wearing a bra or not. I’m actually thinking that my harness bra (Please see a past post) might give it another look too, something I may have to try when I next wear this dress.
I would say it’s not the best fit due to my shape, but it’s not too far off their size guidelines. Quality, I’ve had the dress for over a year and I have yet to see any damage occur or any stitching come undone. Really the only downside is that it always manages to catch my deodorant marks somehow despite my deodorant being suited to be able to black dresses.
So, what where would I wear it? As previously stated, I wore it to my graduation, I’ve worn it on a night out, and I’m pretty sure that match it with a smart blazer or similar and it would do for more business attire or formal occasions. Regarding accessories, I wore it with my favourite pair of black wedge heels that have a gold edging on the heel, but I would say it would work best with any type of heel, along with any colour accessories. If I had the right belt, I think it would pull in the dress around my waist and make my waist pop that bit extra.
In conclusion, I still am not the biggest fan of tight bandage dresses because I know that once I get some food or drink in me, my tummy shows itself a little bit more, but I do like this dress. The design and fit, while it does have a few faults, it’s still a dress that I’ll be wearing for a while, and I know that I’ll be going to Boohoo again. Also, if any of my readers are students, don’t be nervous about graduation. Mine didn’t go perfectly, but that’s okay. My main advice about graduation: take and get a lot of photos of yourself that day, I think that’s the one thing I would have loved more of. So enjoy your graduation, have fun!