My recent review of the Norma Jean was about my first Retrospec’d dress. When I browsed their website that first time some weeks back, I probably added about 10 items to my wishlist right away. As the brand was new to me and costly to buy in the UK and have imported, I chose to try the Sunday Rose Norma Jean dress first amongst my favourites I’d picked out because it was on sale. As soon as it arrived and proved to be a gorgeous high quality piece that fit well and felt incredible on, I began thinking over which Retrospec’d piece would be my next. It was no easy decision.
I opted for the Dyann dress. Retrospec’d offer an abundance of prints and patterns that look authentically vintage, but what I loved most about the Flower Pot Dyann was that I hadn’t yet found any other repro companies offering this shape and style in the bodice. The ruched bust lined by a contrasting red band that loops up onto the shoulders to form the straps, then is echoed again in the belt, is so feminine and sweet that I couldn’t get it out of my mind.
All Retrospec’d pieces are designed and made in Australia, and the Dyann lives up to the same high level of quality that I found to be true of my Norma Jean dress. Dyann has a fitted, unlined bodice, closes with a back zipper, and has a full skirt. It’s paneled and gathered but not a full circle, so there’s enough room to fit only a light to medium volume petticoat under it. It’s made of 100% cotton twill so it’s breathable but there’s no stretch, and it comes with a matching belt.
In terms of fit, the cotton fabric means the dress doesn’t have much give so the sizing has little- to no-leeway. I bought mine in a size 16, which is 85cm in the waist (34 inches) according to the size chart for this dress, which is exactly what it flat measures, with no stretch available, only a slight touch of give. So you need to follow the size chart exactly and size up if you’re between listed measurements.
The Dyann dress comes in sizes 8-16 and costs $190AUD. Retrospec’d ship at a flat rate of $14AUD within Australia and $25AUD internationally, and they also have a store in NSW. I got lucky this time around that my parcel wasn’t selected for customs appraisal when it arrived in the UK from Australia; Royal Mail only randomly selects a percentage of incoming international parcels to check them for customs values and payments, so it’s just down to luck as to whether you receive a customs Fee To Pay notice before receipt. My parcel going unchecked means I didn’t have to pay any additional fees, but I was fully expecting a £50-ish bill for a dress of this value, so bear that in mind yourself when ordering from abroad.