Liquorish Black and White Maxi Dress With a Wide Brim Hat

A flowing maxi dress is my go-to in hot weather. They give coverage without making me feel hot and trussed up. Admittedly, I probably get more wear out of them on holiday than I do in the UK, but the recent heatwave gave me the opportunity to wear this black and white one from Liquorish. Whereas most of my maxi dresses have thin straps, this one has short, kimono-style sleeves which are both flattering and cooling.

I styled this black and white maxi dress with a wide brim hat and orange fringe bag for a summery, boho look.

The black bands on the upper part of the dress create a slimming effect by breaking up the width of the flared sleeves. The fabric is very lightweight and it doesn’t crease so it’ll definitely be coming with me on my next beach holiday. It would look great with a basket bag and big straw hat. But this is the UK after all, so I decided to style this black and white maxi dress with a wide brim hat and an orange fringe bag for a summery, boho look. I was craving a little bit of colour and I don’t use this orange Modalu bag enough.

The sandals are new, and by a brand completely new to me. I shop quite a lot on discount members only sites, and when I saw these Ri-belle sandals on sale at Brand Alley I had to have them. I could tell from the photos that they are fantastic quality and very comfortable. When they arrived I was not disappointed. They have a very soft, padded insole and the ankle strap keeps them securely on my feet. I can’t wear sandals that flap or slip when I walk. I’ll be wearing these lots over the summer.

How do you keep your cool in the hot weather? Do you like wearing maxi dresses? It’s link up day so scroll down to share what you’ve been wearing!

Liquorish Black and White Maxi Dress With a Wide Brim Hat Modalu orange fringe bag

Liquorish Black and White Maxi Dress With a Wide Brim Hat orange Modalu fringe bag

Liquorish Black and White Maxi Dress With a Wide Brim Hat orange Modalu fringe bag

Gold and white Ri-bell sandals

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Liquorish Black and White Maxi Dress With a Wide Brim Hat orange Modalu fringe bag

Liquorish dress (not current season but I’ve found the exact dress here) | Modalu bag (similar) | hat (old, similar) | Joe’s sunglasses (similar)


 

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Barbados Holiday Wardrobe Marks and Spencer silk maxi dress

You may remember a couple of weeks ago I posted an outfit from a holiday in Barbados where I extolled the virtues of the maxi dress. Well as I make last minute preparations to fly off to sunnier climes once more I thought I’d share some photos of the other maxi dresses that have become the mainstay of my holiday wardrobe.

I love the mix of prints in this dress and the pretty ruffles on the bust…and it co-ordinates perfectly with the stunning sunset.

Most of my dresses I picked up for a song, either on eBay, in sales or charity shops. This silk one-shoulder dress is from Marks and Spencer but I bought it on eBay for about £10. It was brand new with the tags on. Because I have so many clothes from M&S I can buy without trying on, confident that they will fit. I love the mix of prints in this dress and the pretty ruffles on the bust…and it co-ordinates perfectly with the stunning sunset. Most of my outfit photos were taken either at sunset or after dark because the sun sets quite early in Barbados (around 6pm) and getting the little one out of the pool before then wasn’t easy!

Barbados Holiday Wardrobe Marks and Spencer silk maxi dress

sunset at Surfside, Holetown, Barbados

Almond BEach resort, Speightstown sunset

night-sky-holetown

Barbados Holiday Wardrobe dickins-and-jones-maxi-dress

This dress is from Dickins and Jones, bought from House of Fraser in the sale at the end of Summer. It was reduced to just over £8! Even though it was only available in a small I had to chance it for that price (knowing I could return it if it didn’t fit) but to my delight it did fit! It’s very low cut so I needed to put a safety in it to spare my blushes, but the deep V means I can wear a big necklace.

Barbados Holiday Wardrobe dickins-and-jones-maxi-dress

Barbados Holiday WardrobeMarks and Spencer silk-maxi-dress

Another M&S silk dress that I bought on eBay, again for less than £10. It’s a little small on the bust – the black part of the dress isn’t quite deep enough – but otherwise it fits fine. It’s lovely and cool, plus the straps are detachable so you could wear it as a strapless dress too.

Barbados Holiday Wardrobe black-and-white-striped-dress

I’ve had this black and white dress for years and it’s been on quite a few holidays. It’s not the easiest dress to get into (getting my shoulders through the waistband is a bit of a tussle) but I love the design. I bought it from Asos, but with being so old it’s no longer available – this one is the closest match I could find.

Barbados Holiday Wardrobe Marks and Spencer dress

I love the colours in this dress and how the sleeves look like wings when I spread my arms!

Now this dress really was a bargain; I found it on a clearance rail in Marks and Spencer (a long time ago) for the grand sum of £5! I didn’t have to think twice about snapping it up. I take it on every beach holiday because it’s cool and airy, doesn’t crease and feels fantastic on thanks to it being super stretchy. I love the colours in this dress and how the sleeves look like wings when I spread my arms! It has a built in top underneath the flowing sleeves so my sides are covered. I wore this dress on the last night of our holiday when we went to the Speightstown Sizzler – a little food and music festival where our friend Beveny was cooking traditional Bajan fishcakes. They were absolutely delicious and I want to go back for more!

Do you have a tried and tested formula for beach holiday packing? I’d love to hear how you prefer to dress on vacation 🙂

Barbados Holiday Wardrobe Marks and Spencer dress

Barbados Holiday Wardrobe Marks and Spencer dress Speightstown Sizzler

 

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Beaded Maxi Dress in Barbados

For today’s Style With a Smile link up I’m reminiscing about a wonderful holiday from a few months ago. Barbados is a very special place for us as we got engaged and married there, so we like to escape to our favourite island whenever possible. It was my husband’s birthday towards the end of the holiday so we dragged ourselves away from the beach and went exploring.

The Foursquare Rum Distillery is tucked away in the southern countryside of the island on 8 acres of a former sugar plantation.

Barbados is famous for rum (the rum punches are delicious!) so it seemed fitting to visit a rum distillery. The Foursquare Rum Distillery is tucked away in the southern countryside of the island on eight acres of a former sugar plantation.  This working rum factory is best known for its collection of spiced rums but it produces a wide range of rums including Doorly’s (the husband’s favourite). Entrance is free and you can wander around, learning about the various stages of rum-making. The aroma of molasses, yeast and spices is intoxicating. For a small fee you can sample some of the rums, but unfortunately we got there a few minutes too late. Lesson learned: not everywhere operates on a 9-5 basis! We made up for it by buying a couple of bottles at the airport.

Foursquare rum distillery Barbados

Foursquare rum distillery Barbados

Foursquare rum distillery Barbados

Foursquare rum distillery Barbados

Before our ill-timed visit to the distillery we had lunch at Atlantis restaurant at Bathsheba on the East coast. The Atlantic coast is very rugged and breathtakingly beautiful, but a definite no-no for swimming. I had the best Bajan fishcakes ever for a starter, washed down with a spiced rum punch. Atlantis has the most amazing view so you simply have to take your time over lunch. No-one rushes in Barbados anyway…even if it does mean missing the rum tasting!

I mostly wear maxi dresses on a beach holiday because they are so easy to throw on with a pair of sandals and some jewellery.

We snapped quite a few outfits during the holiday, which I’ll be posting at a later date. I mostly wear maxi dresses on a beach holiday because they are so easy to throw on with a pair of sandals and some jewellery: job done. Trying to tame my hair in the humidity takes quite an effort (I usually give up and leave it frizzy) so I don’t want to be faffing with what to wear…that means missing valuable cocktail time!

I found this particular maxi dress in a charity shop for less than £10. It’s made of stretch jersey so it’s incredibly comfortable, while the embellishment makes it dressy enough to wear for dinner. For variety I do pack a pair of lightweight trousers (seen in this post with ridiculously frizzy hair!), a couple of skirts and some vest tops. Refining my beach holiday packing is still very much a work in progress but maxi dresses are always top of my list!

What’s your beach holiday go-to outfit? Do you prefer dresses or separates? Let me know in the comments and don’t forget to link up 🙂

Beaded Maxi Dress in Barbados Atlantis Bathsheba

bathsheba

Beaded Maxi Dress in Barbados

Beaded Maxi Dress in Barbados

Beaded Maxi Dress in Barbados



 

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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.

 

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Black and white maxi dress

Looking back through my recent holiday photos I realised I'd forgotten to post this outfit. This dress is a little awkward to get into but once it's on it feels great and drapes in all the right places. The black and white stripes make a change from all the floral prints we see by the pool. I kept accessories minimal with a silver bracelet and earrings, and tan sandals.

BW maxi dress

Dress: Asos, sandals: Asos.

 

Wish I was still there….happy memories 🙂

 

Thanks for reading, have a lovely day,

 

Emma xxx

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