The Fairy Doll dress by Collectif is one of their staple dresses that receives new print and colourway releases every spring/summer. This year the offerings are tropical themed samples of deliciousness, and I’ve been eagerly waiting for this orange and green combo of bamboo summer fun to be released since I saw the preview of SS17 last September.
I knew I loved the dress instantly purely for its vibrant print, but I didn’t realise it was going to be such a comfortable, easy wear. With no zips and only stretchy, stretchy smocking, this is a perfect dress for wearing on hot summer days when tight waistbands can pinch and rub as your body temperature rises. Plus, that stretch factor means it’s an excellent dress for travelling in both style and comfort, something I appreciated massively when I wore it this past weekend in the hot glasshouses of the Royal Edinburgh Botanical gardens and walking round the gorgeous (but hilly) city.
Dress: Fairy Doll Tropical Bamboo Dress C/O Collectif
Shoes: Yellow Lidia flats C/O Lulu Hun
Cardigan: Sage Tootsie Cropped Cardigan from Doll Me Up
Bangles: Woven Bamboo bangle by Splendette + assorted thrifted
This dress really is a summertime dream. Along with the comfort offered by the smocked back, the spaghetti straps are adjustable, allowing the whole dress to stretch and be adjusted to fit your body exactly. The decorative wooden buttons featured on the centre panel of the bodice sport a sweet engraved anchor design on each button face. The flared skirt is a great summer retro length, not so short you’ll be flashing your thighs but not so long that the extra fabric adds to the heat. It’s 25 inches long, to be exact, and it can take a medium volume petticoat should you want to add one.
The smocked back means sizing is a pretty easy affair on this style, as there’s lots of stretch in the waist. My size 16 flat measures 34 inches in the waist and stretches to 40 inches, and the bust 39 inches flat with stretch to around 47-48 inches. Your normal Collectif size should see you safe in this dress, but if you haven’t bought from Collectif before or you’re uncertain then I think it’s more important to choose your size according to your bust, so that you don’t put a lot of strain on the straps if you’re especially blessed in the chest department. They are spaghetti straps, after all.
Alongside this dress I also wore these new Lulu Hun Lidia shoes for my glasshouse jaunt. I’ve said before how much I love having a variety of flat shoes in my shoe-rack so I can finish off almost any outfit in a practical, comfortable manner that’s still cute. These Lidia flats have an adorable cut out feature on the pointed toe that offer something different to the almost identical bow-sporting round toed ballet flats I own in almost every colour from various high street chains.
I’ve noted in the past that Lulu Hun is known for sizing small but that I have always managed to wear my standard size 7 in all their styles I’ve owned so far, but this is the first style where I agree sizing up is almost universally necessary. In the size 7 these were very tight around my toes and I almost needed a shoehorn to get them on at the back at first, so I’ve had to stretch them out to a more comfortable fit by wearing them around the house for a few hours with thick socks. I could probably still find more comfort in going up to the size 8, really, so I would certainly advise you to think about sizing up yourself.
The Fairy doll dress comes in this Tropical Bamboo and a gorgeous blue Bird of Paradise print, each in UK sizes 6-22 for £55. The Lulu Hun Lidia flats come in yellow, mint, royal blue and red, in UK sizes 3-8 for £30.75. All of these items are available to order from Collectif’s website, which offers international shipping, or from one of their London or Brighton stores.