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Why the Little Black Dress is Arguably the Most Important Garment You’ll Ever Own

Melina Morry of The Lady-like Leopard in a little black dress by Zimmermann.

Everyone should own a little black dress! We’ve all heard that before. Time and time again, a little black dress is the outfit that is going to take you from A to B and then to Z and then all the way back to A again. In other words, everywhere.

If I had to take a rough guess right now about how many LBDs I own, I’d have to say it’s about five or maybe more – and they’re all completely different. It’s true. There are many, many ways to differentiate LBDs from each other: strap width, hem length, fabric texture. Don’t believe anyone who says they all look the same. (What a joke!)

As Karl Lagerfeld once said, “One is never over-dressed or under-dressed in a little black dress” – and I dare say that no truer words have been spoken. Well, at least in the case of this dark-hued frock.

To back up my title statement that an LBD is the most important garment you’ll ever own, I asked some of my favourite Canadian designers for their thoughts on the subject.

Why the Little Black Dress is Arguably the Most Important Garment You’ll Ever Own

little black dress - the lady-like leopard by melina morry

Hilary MacMillan

What’s your definition of a “little black dress”?
The LBD is an essential piece in any womens wardrobe dating back to the 1920’s when Coco Chanel came out with a straight, calf-length dress that was meant to be accessible to every woman. The silhouette has changed over the years but the LBD remains a staple.

What is your go-to little black dress? Where do you wear it most?
My current LBD is a straight lace dress with sleeves, and jewel neckline. I wear it to daytime functions that require me to be a bit dressier.

What’s your advice to someone buying their first little black dress?
Find the right dress for your shape (hourglass? show off your natural waist, and a fuller skirt), show off one feature (short dress? opt for a higher neckline), and most importantly find a good tailor.

Melissa Nepton

What’s your definition of a “little black dress”?
A practical dress that works morning to evening, is easy to travel with and doesn’t wrinkle.

What is your go-to little black dress? Where do you wear it most?
As a new mom, this is essential to have in my closet. I’ll wear it out to restaurants or [any] other outings.

What’s your advice to someone buying their first little black dress?
Pick a length that works for all occasions and that you can easily pair with a jacket or vest.

Melina Morry of The Lady-like Leopard in a little black dress by Zimmermann.

Jennifer Masabni

On a scale of 1-10, how important do you think it is to have an LBD stashed away somewhere in your closet? Why?
10! Black is the colour that never goes out of style, it’s suitable for all seasons. It doesn’t follow trends so it shows that you’re not interested in looking like everybody else – it evokes being in control and strong, yet feminine. Look at the little black dress as an investment and a statement piece.

If you were to design an LBD right here, right now, what would it look like?
It would be a below the knee fitted dress, with an asymmetrical detail, a cut at the waist and a deep V neckline.

What’s your advice to someone buying their first little black dress?
Make sure it fits your personality with the right silhouette and materials so that you are comfortable in it. A black dress can be dull if the cut or the style have nothing special to it. A well cut black dress with the right details will set you apart.

WHAT I’M WEARING:

little black dress | ZIMMERMANN

Melina Morry Signature - Fashion Blogger at The Lady-like Leopard

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