The Universal Charm of the Wrap Dress

One of the most universally flattering dress shapes, is the wrap dress. I love them.

It’s lines replicate the hourglass figure. If you’re lucky enough to have that silhouette, bravo. I’m not. My body shape is an inverted triangle, so this style helps define my non-existent waist, while the V-neck narrows the look of my wide shoulders.

The Universal Charm of the Wrap Dress

The first wrap dresses weren’t designed by Diane von Furstenberg. They were designed by Elsa Schiaparelli in the 1930’s.

The Universal Charm of the Wrap Dress

Claire McCardell designed her own version of the wrap dress in the 1940’s.


In the 1974,  Diane Von Furstenburg created her version, using her signature silk jersey. Diana Vreeland, editor of Vogue magazine, was very supportive and encouraged Diane to produce her line. Diane’s book tells the story of her wrap dress and is a fascinating portrait of a determined woman, with a dream.

The key part of the wrap dress is the drape of the fabric. Having a stretchable, fluid  fabric enables his dress to mold to a woman’s shape and move with her. It just wouldn’t be the same in a stiff, woven fabric

I have a faux wrap dress, which appears wrapped, but slips on in one piece.
It looks like a wrap dress but doesn’t perform like one. I’ve been hunting for a classic version that won’t break the bank. It’s something I would keep and wear for many years.
Many women never wear dresses, do you?


  1. I’m playing catch up reading. I love a wrap dress. One of the prettiest styles!

  2. The wrap dress is the universal classic in my style book. I remember my mom wearing DVF wrap dresses, in very cool prints, back in the 70’s. I found DVF’s book to be a fascinating read. She is definitely inspiring. She also has a TV show about her business and life which will be starting it’s second season soon. I know you don’t do much TV but you would likely enjoy it. Welcome home my stylish friend!
    xx, Heather

  3. I love wrap dresses! A total classic!

  4. ONLY LONG dresses……….for everyday!!!I don’t think I have worn a dress short since my early 20″s!!!Now that you had me think about it!!!
    DO YOU???

    1. I wear both. Being tall, long dresses look fab on you!

  5. Claire McCardell dresses can make anyone look beautiful. And if you’ve noticed, these days even Diane Von Furstenberg has opted out of the wrap dress for more of shirt dress or a tunic. I am very active so I wear mostly fluid maxi dresses or pants and flowy tops.

    1. I’m with you on the ease of movement in flowy garments. I wonder if it’s her aging body shape that’s causing her to choose more shift shapes.

  6. I love wearing dresses, finding them a comfortable and simple way to look relatively polished. The DVF wrap dresses I’ve tried so far haven’t worked for me and last time I tried I found them too short, even for someone of my (non) height. But I still yearn for that Percy print in lustrously draping silk jersey. One day, I hope…

    1. I find her dresses run very small. Wearing a dress is the simplest way to dress, period! Just one garment, and you’re done:)

  7. I didn’t realize DVF didn’t design the first wrap dress! I have to admit while it’s not my favorite style, it is universally flattering for the most part and just feels sexy wearing it. I found a Calvin Klein wrap dress that looks very DFV at Ross for a fraction of the price so it’s definitely worth checking other designers. Hope you’re doing well Jennifer! 🙂


    1. I agree Dale. The knockoffs are just as wonderful. For me it’s all about finding a print I like, since I don’t wear many. How’s that little darling doing??

    2. Dresses are the easiest way to get dressed in the morning:) Many women forego them for pants, but they really are simple.

  8. Love this look Jennifer. I bought one of DVF’s wrap dresses a LONG time ago. It’s timeless and universally flattering.

    Hope you are enjoying your summer!

    1. I love timeless! Investment dressing at it’s best. xo

  9. Elsa Schiaparelli had so many talents. I’m surprised she hasn’t been more recognized although someone wrote a book about her life a few years ago. My grandmother was a big fan of her dresses and her perfume. My grandmother’s dresser is still lined with the same floral paper and it still smells like “Shocking Pink.” xoxo, Brenda

    1. She was over shadowed by Chanel but they were interesting rivals. But her designs were fabulous!!

  10. Dresses make up the core of my wardrobe. I find them much more comfortable than pants.

    Wrap dresses are one of my favourites.


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