Ahh, maxi dresses.  The ubiquitous summer essential and the single most universally unflattering article of clothing on the market.  I love my maxi – it’s so comfortable and easy.  But, I also tried on at least 15 before I settled on this one, and as the lower right hand picture shows, it’s still not the most amazing thing I’ve ever worn, fit wise.  Usually, people look pregnant or show way too much cleavage.  Mine just kinda makes me look fat generally. 

But, I understand the attraction, so I won’t go so far as to say maxis should be avoided.  I will say they should be purchased with care.  Don’t buy the first one right off the rack; be wiling to look around.  And don’t forget how helpful structured jackets can be (thank you, Stacey and Clinton, for pounding that into all of our heads). And, finally, remember that maxis are a great way to look put-together without much effort, so I suggest not ruining the look with old flip-flops.  Wedges (or at least “fancy” flip-flops) will do wonders for the overall impression.

My dress is from Stein-Mart, an end of the season deal a couple years ago and the hot pink blazer a swap party win.  The white wedges are actually – randomly and shamefully – from Wal-Mart (MANY years ago, for the record).  Yes, I am ashamed to have Wal-Mart shoes, mostly because I’m bitter at the store right now, but also because they’re super uncomfortable, even if they are cute.  

I was about to conclude with a play on TJ Maxx’s “be a Maxxinista” thing, but I decided I couldn’t be that cheesy.  So, just go find a great dress!