The sweater dress, a cosy, body and soul warming cocoon of pure (cashmere) bliss, it is definitely a must-have for every woman. Mine was a spontaneous buy. I was in a post-accident depressive mood worsened by winter blues and in need of some retail therapy when I saw the deep sea blue Patrizia Pepe dress - shaped to flatter the figure, caress the skin with its delicate cashmere strands, and on sale. It was mine within minutes. Needless to say we became best friends. I think I have worn this dress more than any other item in my wardrobe – for nights in and dinners out, work and walks in a country, whenever I needed a bit of colour or warmth, an imaginary hug or extra coverage.
It made me realise that impulse shopping is good and having a sweater dress in a wardrobe is essential.
They, of course, come in many shapes and materials and you need to pick the one that speaks to you just like the LBD. My only tip would be to buy cashmere or wool designs (a dose of added silk is good, too) – if you see any acrylics or polyester on a label, put the dress back. It may cost less, but it will be scratchy, itchy and suffocating for your body. With appropriate care, the real yarns, on the other hand, will last you a lifetime, the CPW (cost per wear) will be next to nothing and wearing the dress will make you feel feminine, sensual, beautiful and loved.
Where to buy: 1. Silk scarf front cashmere dress by Ralph Lauren (£884), 2. Char cashmere jumper dress by AllSaints (£165) 3. Luan merino wool sweater dress by Calvin Klein Collection (£81 Was £180), 4. Polka dot cashmere dress by Chinti & Parker (£380), 5. Striped cashmere sweater dress by Chinti & Parker (£350), 6. Maggie cashmere dress by Crumpet (£136 Was £340), 7. Olive belted cashmere and silk dress by Ralph Lauren Black Label (£326), 8. Merino wool dress by DKNY (£81 Was £180)
Where to buy: 9. Roma M cashmere dress by Zadig & Voltaire (£175), 10. Cable sweater dress by Jigsaw (£109), 11. Extra fine bi-colour dress by McQ Alexander McQueen (£299 Was £995), 12. Wool & alpaca sweater dress FARHI by Nicole Farhi (£87.75 Was £195), 13. Branitta wool and cashmere dress by Diane von Furstenberg (£309), 14. Embellished cashmere dress by L’Wren Scott (£430 Was £1435), 15. Hella jeans blue dress by Humanoid (£270), 16. Charlot merino knit lace overlay dress by Malene Birger (£255)
Where to buy: 17. Cashmere midi dress by Pure (£199), 18. Cashmere and silk blend dress by Pringle of Scotland (£150.50 Was £430), 19. Wool blend sweater dress by Maison Martin Margiela (£490), 20. Fair Isle mohair blend sweater dress by Vanessa Bruno Athe (£87.50 Was £250), 21. Silk & wool blend sweater dress by Stella McCartney (£535), 22. A-line sweater dress by Stella McCartney (£610), 23. Shetland wool dress by Bouchra Jarrar (£702), 24, Intarsia wool blend dress by Sonia by Sonia Rykiel (£360)
P.S. Just in case you love the dress the model is wearing on the photo, you can buy it on-line here and here.
Related posts: 5 dresses every woman should own: the little black dress
Photo source: Martha Streck in Marie Claire France October 2012 (photography: Satoshi, styling: Claire Dhelens)