Finding the Perfect Beach to Bar Maxi Dress

Lorraine Kelly JD Williams JD Williams Lorraine Kelly wrap Beach to Bar Maxi Dress

When it’s time to pack my case for a beach holiday there is one item I cannot live without: a maxi dress. After a day on the beach or by the pool you can slip a maxi dress on over a bikini, add a few accessories and you’re good to hit the bar. Finding the perfect beach to bar maxi dress means looking for a few key features: the material needs to be crease resistant, preferably stretchy and easy to slip on.

This black and white maxi dress  from JD Williams ticks all those boxes. The crossover deep V cut is flattering because it elongates and slims the upper body while the elasticated waist band gives definition. The material has enough weight to hang nicely, skimming over the hips and disguising any lumps and bumps. It’s stretchy enough to step into it and just pull it on, plus it’s lined so won’t show a VPL…and…it has pockets!

My holiday footwear needs to be comfortable, go with everything else in my travel wardrobe and not take up much room in the case.

I don’t know about you, but when I’m on a beach holiday I hardly ever wear heels. Although I might take a pair of wedges, I usually stick to flip flops by day and dressier flat sandals for evenings out.  When JD Williams invited me to choose a dress and a pair of shoes to create this beach to bar look I was instantly drawn to the Heavenly Soles range. My holiday footwear needs to be comfortable, go with everything else in my travel wardrobe and not take up much room in the case, so it didn’t take long for me to select these metallic sandals. They are very comfortable due to the padded sole and wide fitting (they’re available in an E and EEE fitting) plus they have a zip at the back so you don’t have to undo the buckles to get them on. They are the perfect addition to my summer wardrobe – I can see myself wearing these with jeans, long wide-leg trousers and shorts.

JD Williams Lorraine Kelly wrap Beach to Bar Maxi Dress

While I’ve styled the dress here for more of an evening look with a silver clutch and a few pieces of jewellery, it would work equally well for a day out sightseeing with a beach bag or shopper and a big floppy hat. If the evenings are a little on the cool side then a lightweight denim jacket worn over the dress would keep it looking modern. A cover up that defines the waist – maybe a shirt tied at the waist – works best over a maxi dress, anything long and voluminous will ruin the silhouette.

Lorraine Kelly JD Williams black and white maxi dress

Silver River Island clutch black and white wood ring

LizzyO white leopard print wraparound bracelet

Heavenly Soles JD Williams sandals

Dress and sandals: JD Williams, bracelet: LizzyO, clutch: River Island (old), sunglasses: Missoni, ring: bought on holiday.


JD Williams have a wide range of maxi dresses and sandals so there’s bound to be something to suit everyone! Do you have any tips for perfecting the beach to bar look? Let me know in the comments or tweet me @thestylesplash! Have a great weekend!


Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post, however I was gifted the dress and sandals. All opinions are my own and not influenced in any way.


Linking up with: #iwillwearwhatilikeTurning Heads TuesdayFun Fashion FridayFresh Fashion ForumMix It Mondays, Style Sessions, Fab Favorites, Weekend WearShoe and TellConfident TwosdayThe Pleated PoppyColor and GraceThrow Back Thursday FashionLet It ShineThursday Fashion FilesTrendy WednesdayTrend SpinStyle Swap TuesdaysTop of the WorldPassion4FashionStyle Me WednesdayGaray TreasuresFabulous FridayFun Fashion FridayStyle Diary by OsyForage FashionFlashback Fashion FridaysFancy FridayFashion Friday, Reasons to Dress, Jaymie AshcraftStart the Week Stylish.



  1. June 10, 2016 / 5:17 pm

    Hi Emma!
    Where are we going on holiday? ha! Love it, I am headed to the beach next month and love your dress with the jungle print. I am eyeing a similar dress as well, and love simplicity when I go to the beach as well. A ma xi like this is perfect and love the sandals. I dont wear a heel either, it usually is sandals as well. You look great in this dress!
    thanks for linking up with turning heads tuesday!
    jess xx

    • June 10, 2016 / 11:53 pm

      Thanks Jess! I’m going to Barbados in October so the dress and sandals will come in handy! Over the Summer holidays I’m going to my dad’s in Brittany but the weather there can be unpredictable…it could be hot and sunny or raining…much like the UK!

  2. June 11, 2016 / 4:28 am

    I have a b/w maxi that I love, too! Those sandals are adorable and love your pedi/toe color!


  3. June 11, 2016 / 12:43 pm

    Well, you definitely found the perfect dress! And the black and white print makes it super versatile if you want to add a pop of color (like if you find some adorable little accessory to buy while on vacation)! And those sandals are fabulous! You are stunning! Great choice of dress and shoes!


    • June 21, 2016 / 11:02 am

      Thanks Shelbee, that’s so lovely of you! I can always find something to buy on vacation – my shopping radar is never off duty 🙂

  4. Amy Arnold
    June 11, 2016 / 2:07 pm

    You did find the perfect one. I love the black and white.

    Amy Ann
    Straight A Style

  5. June 11, 2016 / 11:23 pm

    You chose really well. Looking fabulous x

  6. June 12, 2016 / 2:07 am

    You’re so right, a maxi the perfect beach holiday piece! This one is gorgeous and I need to find a good one soon!

    Chow Down USA

  7. June 13, 2016 / 11:29 am

    Beautiful dress ! You look absolutely beautiful 🙂 I love the black and white 🙂 big hugs Beata 🙂 x

  8. Jessica
    June 14, 2016 / 12:53 am

    Maxi dresses are so versatile! And I’m loving this black and white one. It looks great on you!
    Jeans and a Teacup

  9. June 14, 2016 / 5:37 pm

    Oh, you had me at pockets! I adore a dress with pockets. This one is really lovely; the cut looks great and the print is fun and holiday-ready. xx

    • June 21, 2016 / 11:18 am

      Thanks Lisa! Anything with pockets immediately goes up in my estimation!

    • June 21, 2016 / 11:15 am

      Thanks Alice! A maxi dress is always high on my holiday packing list 🙂

  10. July 10, 2016 / 4:44 pm

    I wanted to say you looked peach perfect, but that frase must be stale. Sorry. I always get excited when I know an English expression. But you do look very very nice. Honestly.

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