The Best Summer Dresses for Easy, Breezy Style
If there’s a gaping whole in your wardrobe for a few of this season’s most-wanted dresses, let Liberty help you decide which midis, minis and maxis to pick
Almost an entire outfit in one, the best summer dresses take the stress out of rushed mornings and can instantly revive your sense of style when you find yourself stuck in an outfit rut. Throw one on with a light layer and the perfect summer bag and you're good to go. But which dresses have made it onto Liberty’s definitive top 20 chart? From vintage florals and denim minis to 90s-style bodycons and dramatic maxis, find the dress (or dresses) of your dreams with our definitive rundown.
Liberty Garden of Reverie Silk Gala Maxi Dress, £450
First and foremost, every outfit looks infinitely better if it has a touch of Liberty artistry to it. But don’t just take our word for it; try this dress on and see for yourself. Inspired by the 70s and adorned in Liberty's whimsical Garden of Reverie print, this dress is bound to earn you knowing nods from fellow fashion followers, wherever you wear it.
Read more: The Dressing Room
If you’re a bohemian at heart, the free-spirited style personality that’s drawn to ruffled blouses, embroidered scarves and charm jewellery, then you’re bound to get plenty of wear out of this Shrimps dress. Cut from shiny off-white silk and decorated with dainty lace panelling, it’s got all the vintage charm you look for.Shop the dress
Pleats Please Issey Miyake PROMENADE Pleated Short-Sleeve Tunic, £385
Often the best dresses to invest in at this time of year are the ones that bring the outside in. Take this Pleats Please tunic by cult Japanese fashion label Issey Miyake as a case in point. Printed with a vibrant landscape of flowers, forests and winding country lanes, it’s just the thing to make your sense of style bloom.Shop the dress
It’s never truly summer until you start wearing mini dresses, so kick off the season by wearing this fresh-from-the-studio Liberty design, complete with charming box pleats. Perfect for bearing a little more leg on days when the sun’s high and hot, it’s cut from our signature Tana Lawn™ Cotton, a technically developed and breathable fabric that’ll keep you cool in every sense of the word.Shop the dress
If you’ve a penchant for dresses that cascade down to your ankle and beyond, firstly, consider yourself a member of Team Maxi in this summer’s battle of the hemlines and secondly, add this floor-length shirtdress to your basket. Its zingy green base comes decked from shoulder to seam in hand-drawn lilacs, conjuring up images of gardens in full flower.Shop the dress
Fashion’s tastemakers want our wardrobes to sparkle this spring/summer, quite literally. So, unleash your inner bright young thing by wearing this draped wrap-over dress by BEARE PARK. Tailored from fluid, glossy silk, this elegant evening dress gives new meaning to the phrase ‘rise and shine’.
Read more: The Best Evening Dresses for Summer
Taking the pinstripe shirt to maxi-dress length, this work-to-weekender comes with almost endless wearability. Bridging the gap between sophistication and comfort, wear it to the office, to after hours drinks and whenever you get a chance to escape to the beach.Shop the dress
KITRI is up there with Britain’s most loved brands, those select few cult labels that are putting the UK firmly on the fashion map, but if you’ve yet to invest in its fusion of punchy prints and elegant silhouettes, this halter neck maxi deserves to be your first investment. With its five-tier skirt, fitted bodice and maximal florals, it’s one you’ll want to wear all summer long.Shop the dress
Max Mara Rimmel Printed Shirtdress, £915
Bright colours and bold botanicals might spring straight to mind when you think of summer dresses, but if you want to do things a little differently this season around, ride the rising wave of minimalism with this minimal shirt dress. Casual in spirit and neutral in shade – so it’ll pair with practically anything that’s already in your wardrobe – it comes with the most welcome of additions: a matching waistbelt!
Read more: Casual Fashion Trends for Summer
It’s almost impossible to overdo denim, but if you’re out of practice when it comes to double and even triple denim, make securing 60s-style mini a matter of importance. Made by FRAME – chosen jeans brand of the style set – its patchwork construction features an array of the label’s most-wanted washes.
Read more: How Jeans Should Fit
Also high up on the fashion agenda is the oversized dress trend, those with supersized silhouettes but also everyday wearability. The poster child of this go-big-or-go-home look is Cecilie Bahnsen, meaning there’s every reason to let this midi with a peplum hem, puff sleeves and amped-up volume make its way into your dress rotation.Shop the dress
Farm RIO Off-White Rio Tiles Midi-Dress, £250
Ablaze with tropical prints and evoking the vibrancy of Brazilian culture, FARM Rio’s colourful creations are sure to boost dopamine levels. Complete with puffed sleeves, a cut-out back and a tiered skirt, this playful mini is particularly perfect for all the parties your calendar has in store.
Read more: The Mood-Boosting Power of Colourful Jewellery
Loewe Anagram Tank Dress, £625
Classic and timeless, this logo-embossed Anagram Tank Dress by Loewe is a transeasonal staple, crafted from cotton-stretch jersey to a maxi-length with a slit on the side. Effortlessly flattering with its form-fitting rib, this Loewe number is perfect for summer holidays over a bikini or layering with a denim jacket on brisker days.Shop the dress
Creating beautiful clothing that we want to wear and cherish – now and for years to come – SZ Blockprints is among the growing number of artisan, craft-focused brands that are reimagining womenswear’s future. To get in on the rise (and return) of quality-first fashion, look no further than the breezy and belted Divya dress, one that’s been meticulously printed by hand.Shop the dress
La DoubleJ Breakfast Dress, £550
Brides-to-be often have a hard time picking out The One, but deciding what to wear as a wedding guest is no walk in the park either. That was until this midi came along. Lightweight to keep you comfy all day long and patterned in an ornate floral design, it’ll showcase your honed sense of style without upstaging the bride.
Read more: The Best Alternative Wedding Dresses
If you’re a sun seeker with plans to jet off or set sail for balmier climes this summer, be sure to add this all-white shirtdress to your packing list. Made from lightweight linen – the fabric to turn to when temperatures climb high – it’s one that’ll help prevent city-dwellers on stifling tubes breaking a sweat, too.Shop the dress
Our love for 90s nostalgia is showing no signs of waning, so keep your finger firmly on fashion’s pulse with this spaghetti-strap dress by Paloma Wool. Slick, asymmetric and semi-sheer to reveal a vibrant orange layer underneath, it celebrates the best of the old and new school of design.
Read more: 90s Vs Y2K Fashion
Believe it or not, a dress that you can wear not only month after month but summer after summer and never look dated does exist. This high-waisted midi, timeless style is but a click away, complete with flattering shape and all-over Liberty florals.Shop the Dress
Drawn to occasion dresses with drama? This one from LoveShackFancy’s latest ‘Made with Liberty Fabric’ collection comes with plenty. Its party piece? A supersized, removable bow at the back that’ll help you make the best kind of entrance, wherever you wear it.Shop the dress