How I wore my cold shoulder cotton dress

Cold shoulder cotton dress

I was not at all sure about the “cold shoulder” trend at the beginning of the season. A bit too gimmicky. I doubted that it would be flattering. Some of you may still think this and that’s fine. However just before I came down to the South of France I realised that I was short of a cool cotton dress. One that I could just pop on and go. I had my tried and trusted linens already down there in my wardrobe. However they were beginning to look a little tired. I searched and searched and finally found the above dress at MarksandSpencer.

Did I keep it or not …….

I fully expected to try it on and send it back immediately, which I very nearly did. It had two great big bows on each shoulder. Definitely a “no”. Then I thought what if I untie the bows and tie the extra fabric into a knot at the front. I then cut off the extra fabric. Et Voila! Much better. The dress is a keeper. There are still a couple of sizes left at the reasonable price of £45. The bracelets I am wearing are from the local market. See my selection here and here.

cold shoulder cotton dress

I have added some pearl earrings and a rope of pearls to lift the look. Similar available at Etsy. Pearl earrings and necklaces.

How I wore my cold shoulder cotton dress

All the photos were taken by my friend Dee in our pretty Provençal village.

How I wore my cold shoulder cotton dress

In the first couple of images I am wearing a pair of blue thong sandals. Here I have swapped them for a more chunky pair of Birkenstocks style sandals.

How I wore my cold shoulder cotton dress





  1. Linda Boardman Kerr
    21st July 2017 / 14:32

    Brilliant! Wow, I love what you did to it! Enjoy St. Remy….we were in my beloved Provence in May and June, and I miss it so.

    • annedaviesconsultancy
      21st July 2017 / 17:27

      You’ve totally made that dress your own. Love what you did there

  2. Sue Lewellen
    21st July 2017 / 15:32

    What a cute dress! Looks cool and comfortable.

  3. 21st July 2017 / 15:47

    Perfect way to make a trend a classic!-Laurel

  4. 21st July 2017 / 15:48

    What a wonderful mini-transformation! It looks fabulous on you: very young looking (should one say that, or not???) You look terrific, in any case!

  5. Janis
    21st July 2017 / 16:04

    I love the look on you. I just hesitate because I’m not sure this is “work appropriate”. I will be glad when I retire and those words don’t dictate my wardrobe any more!

    • 21st July 2017 / 17:37

      You are probably right Janis. Although it is dependant on the work environment. I see young girls in the creative industries wearing this look.

  6. jeanne reaves
    21st July 2017 / 16:21

    I felt the same way as you did–thought cold shoulder would soon pass on, but this one is different and I like it. Just don’t give me the “cold shoulder” in a sweater! It’s nonsensical.

    • 21st July 2017 / 17:35

      I agree about the sweaters. I think you need a very light tan for this look to work.

  7. Linda Henderson
    21st July 2017 / 17:03

    You look great in the navy dress! I have also been leary of the cold shoulder style but it is working for you. Love the village photos too.

  8. Lesley Pearce
    21st July 2017 / 20:23

    Love the dress transformation Josephine

  9. Estalewis
    21st July 2017 / 20:46

    Excellent idea to modify the bows
    What a difference
    Love the look

  10. Wendy in York
    22nd July 2017 / 06:51

    I would never have bought this dress with bows , much better now . M&S should copy your styling – perhaps that’s why they are in the doldrums ?

  11. Jacqueline
    22nd July 2017 / 22:49

    Brilliant idea! You’ve totally transformed the look into something of your own, and I love it!

  12. No Fear of Fashion
    23rd July 2017 / 14:52

    Clever Josephine, very clever and indeed much better than the original. I was very tempted to order it for myself, especially at that price. They didn’t have a 14 in stock anymore, but I bet a 12 would have been good too. Then I realized I have many dresses in my wardrobe which I need to wear for a change. Summer is already advanced and in The Netherlands we don’t often have summers with hot weather as we did this year. So I didn’t, but it was tempting. Oh, and I added you to my blogread list. Finally… I am a bit slow in these things. Forgive me.

    • 24th July 2017 / 16:06

      Hi Greetje
      The dress does come up large so I am sure that a 12 would have been OK on you. Thanks for adding me to your blogroll. That reminds me that I need to update mine.

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