Style AdviceClothes guidesStyle guide to dresses

Off the shoulder dresses

Off the shoulder dresses are characterised as having a neckline that generally sweeps across the chest just above the bust. The sleeves start in line with the neckline, just below the shoulder and are usually just a width of material instead of full sleeves.

This style of dress dates back as far as the 1800s when off the shoulder dresses were worn as evening wear by those wealthy enough to afford them. As time passed, cheaper versions were manufactured and the lower classes of society began to make their own versions to bring the off the shoulder dress into the everyday world of fashion.

The dress style hit mainstream fashion again in the 1970s when it was worn as a way of boycotting the more rigid feminine clothing of the era. Around this time, the one shoulder dress also evolved quite significantly to include a number of mini-skirt versions following the trends of the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Today a number of celebrities choose to wear off the shoulder dresses. Those who have been spotted at award ceremonies and other star-studded events in this style of dress include Kate Hudson who was seen wearing a Stella McCarthy creation, Camilla Belle in a dress by Marchesa and Doutzen Kroes in Herve Leger.


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