Everything's coming up roses at Banana Republic--or, to be more precise, lots of pretty florals. Bloggers and media gathered at the Banana Republic store on Robson street Wednesday afternoon to check out the new Signature Summer Dress collection. With more than 70 styles expected to arrive in staggered shipments throughout spring and summer, it's no wonder that this is billed as the most expansive summer dress collection ever launched at BR. "The collection was designed with the greatest of intentions: to fulfill every woman's fantasy of opening a closet and discovering one dreamy dress after another," explains creative director and EVP Simon Kneen.
Judging from what I saw at the preview, Kneen has the "dreamy dresses" part of the equation down pat. The florals on the A-line fitted frocks, wrap-front dresses, and ankle-grazing maxis ranged from Van Gogh-esque blue and yellow to large abstract watercolours. Solid-coloured numbers boasted fun jewel hues and carefree ruffles. Fabrications consisted of lightweight yet luxurious silk, cotton and linen. I could easily envision the more casual ruffled dresses being worn to run errands on a hot summer's day, while the maxis would be well-suited to patio parties and the A-line knee-length floral frocks would be perfectly suited for afternoon weddings. BR will be getting new stock continuously as the months go by, so chances are you'll see new styles every time you visit.
So what else can BR fans expect from this collection later? Think sequins, white eyelet, halter necklines, more maxis, and lots of fun prints. At $85-$370 per dress with most dresses under $160, prices are reasonable enough to appeal to the budget-conscious shopper looking to update her warm weather wardrobe.
Of course, what's the right outfit without the right accessories? I spotted these fun beaded foldover clutches ($124) near the Signature Summer Dress collection.
I ended up going home with a long blue and yellow floral silk maxi--my first maxi dress ever! The material is soft and flowy and the dress is lined up to the 3/4 mark in the skirt. Although mine came from the petites section, it was still a good 3"-4" longer than the length I'd need for flat sandals. But that's okay--I can probably keep it long to wear with heels and use fashion tape to tack up the hem when I want to wear it with flat sandals. Now if only the weather will warm up! Expect to see an outfit post featuring this maxi once summer arrives in Vancouver.
Thanks to the PR folks from Banana Republic for the invite and dress! To shop the collection, visit your nearest Banana Republic store or check out the dress selection online. And if you want to see the dresses that other fashion lovers chose, check out this post on The Style Spy.