It’s not often I find a new non-pinup clothing brand these days that I actually like, you know, on account of them being non-pinup. Finding Chi Chi London recently, therefore, was awesome.
A UK clothing brand, they produce clothing with lots of feminine design details: lace, floral prints, embroidery, off the shoulder necklines, sheer overlays, satin finishes, and cinched waists. Most of their dresses are midi length or at least knee length, passably retro to my delight, and they also offer petite and plus size ranges, another bonus. There’s a lot of very pretty dresses on their site currently that I like, but when I saw the Rosa dress I fell in love. A day after discovering Chi Chi, Rosa was on her way to me thanks to the help of a 20% off discount code, one of the many discount codes and sales I’ve seen Chi Chi offer just over the past month alone that I’ve been aware of them.
On the website the picture of this dress appears to have a blush, cream toned background. The colour code for it, however, is ‘pink’ so I knew to expect more of pinky hue to the background in person. I have an almost acerbic hate for pale or mid pinks, so I half expected to have to send this dress back after being seeing it in person, but even though the pink is more pink than I had hoped, I still loved this dress. Even for me it photographed more of a warm blush.
The blue floral print, the pleated voluminous skirt and the off the shoulder neckline really make this dress something special. It’s unusual for me to ever wear a dress or skirt without a petticoat–it happens maybe 5 times a year–but with this dress a petticoat is unnecessary, as the gathers and the fabric type make the dress retain its voluminous shape on its own.
This dress closes with a side zipper topped with a hook and eye located right under your left armpit, which is somewhat tricky to do up. Doing it up is a difficult job altogether, as it’s tight and the off the shoulder straps feel awkward and restrictive when I try to wrestle sideways with the zipper, but once it’s zipped it’s a snug and flattering fit in the whole bodice, giving me subtle cleavage and a beautifully displayed collarbone.
I have one other dress from Chi Chi that I bought on sale from ASOS just a week before without realising it was a Chi Chi piece, a strapless dress with a similar skirt. In that dress, Esme, I can squeeze into the size 14 with help zipping up, despite the size chart saying I would need a 16, so I debated about what size to order for the Rosa.
Deciding it would be nice to be able to zip up alone and maybe even breathe, I went with the 16. Good thing too. The 14 in this dress absolutely would not have fit. The back of the dress has elastic along the top, allowing some give in the Bardot straps, but even so when I lift my arms out from my body or upwards the straps cut in a bit as they’re tight and my arms are adorably squishy (which is what we’re all going to silently agree means ‘chubby because I cannot stop eating cheese and cake.’) That’s the only time the dress feels too tight anywhere, so if you follow the size chart with your recent measurements you’ll find a good fit.