Dress Length Guide

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This dress length guide discusses a wide variety of dress lengths that are appropriate for many different types of occasions.  This guide would come in very handy the next time you go out and help you decide the outfit that is right for the occasion.  The article also points you to links containing photo galleries and reviews of dresses of various lengths and the occasions they are used for such as the mini, pencil, midi, and maxi dresses.  In addition, there are a wide variety of different types of dresses that come in different dress lengths such as skater dresses, tank dresses, shirt dresses, smock dresses, tube dresses, shift dresses, bodycon dresses, cocktail dresses, evening dresses, vintage dresses, and vacation dresses.

Also briefly discussed are accessories that go well with dresses of various lengths including belts, handbags, shoes, and an assortment of jewelry.

Dress Length Guide

Mini

Dress Length Guide

This type of dress goes up to the midthigh length.  These are great if you have a great body and good and shapely legs and thighs that you want to show off.  It is a great type of dress to wear for party night or at a bar or night club.  There are of course several places where it would not be appropriate such as at work, at an interview, or for meeting certain types of people.

Check out this beautiful photo gallery and reviews of some of the latest and trendy mini dresses!

When you wear a minidress, it is a good idea to wear a pair of heels such as platform heels.  Since the legs are the center of attention when wearing a mini-dress, you need to take good care of your legs.  Make sure that you exfoliate your legs and use a moisturizer to make your legs look good.  It is not necessary for your mini-dress to be skintight and A-line, flared, and sheath styles also look very good.   Make sure that you are wearing good quality undergarments or shapewear.  Mini-dresses can be worn by women of any age and darker colors tend to look more professional in older women.  In the colder weather, experiment with wearing tights or leggings underneath your mini-dress.

Pencil

Dress Length Guide

This type of dress goes up to just above the knee.  Dresses that fall to the base of the knee or two inches above or below the knee are the most versatile and suitable for practically any occasion and suitable for any body type.  They can be used either in the daytime or in the night, but you don’t want to be the only one wearing it at a party if everyone else is wearing miniskirts.  This is suitable for women of many different body types.  An example of a type of dress that falls in this category that are suitable for women of all types of body shapes are fit-n-flare dresses.

Check out this beautiful photo gallery and reviews of some of the latest and trendy pencil dresses!

The pencil dress is a great choice for office wear at work.  If the office culture is more conservative, select colors like black and navy blue.  Also, pay attention to the length of the pencil dress.  If the office is more relaxed, you have the flexibility of selecting a wide range of colors and patterns as well as a variety of different fabrics.  Also the length of the pencil dress can vary more in a relaxed office setting.

Midi

Dress Length Guide

This type of dress goes to the mid-calf length.  Most midi dresses are not truly that length.  Many midis are a few inches below the knee and do not fall to the mid-calf length.  These types of midis are easier to wear and are more flattering than true midis.  One of the major concerns about wearing the midi dress is to avoid the frumpy look.  The midi length is also sometimes referred to as the tea length.  These are especially good for evening wear.  Another area that these types of dresses are very good for are bridesmaid dresses.  Since the hems are lower for these types of dresses compared to the pencil and midi types of dresses, it is recommended that one wear a bigger set of heels.

Check out this beautiful photo gallery and reviews of some of the latest and trendy midi dresses!

This length is ideal for medium-height and tall women and should be avoided by short and stockily built women.  A slim straight dress is suitable for women with small derrieres and slim thighs while women with wide hips and thighs are better off wearnng flared dresses such as mermaid or gypsy styles.  It is good to select a dress that falls slightly above the mid-calf and also wear a waist belt to cinch in the waist.  The best dress style to select for midi dresses is the A-line dress style that is good for practically any body type.  In many cases, there is a need for alterations to get the length of the midi right.

Maxi/Full Length

Dress Length Guide

This type of dress goes to the ankle or down to the floor.  The floor length dresses should be saved or reserved for black-tie galas, your wedding, or very important classic type of events.  Again, since the hemlines of these types of dresses are much lower than the minidresses and mididresses, it is recommended that one wear high heels with these types of dress lengths.

Check out this beautiful photo gallery and reviews of some of the latest and trendy maxi dresses!

Again, this length is ideal for medium-height and tall women and should be avoided by short and stockily built women.  The ankle length is suitable for practically any occasion whether it be a casual or a fancy one.  It can be worn to the office at work and nowadays it is popular to wear sneakers with the dresses.  Many evening gowns are maxi length and are good for cocktail parties, galas, proms, and weddings.  Pretty floral maxi dresses are perfect for balmy summer days.

Wearing a maxi dress with a belt is very good for drawing out the small waist that you have.  If you have a fuller figure, larger prints are more suitable to wear and in the case of petite or skinny women, smaller prints are the better option.  A solid black maxi dress is good for practically any occasion and can be dressed up with a wide variety of accessories.

Summary of Dress Lengths

Overall, the four major types of dress lengths are mini, pencil, midi, and maxi/full length.  There are some more variations in lengths that also exist.  For example, a microminidress is shorter than a minidress and there are dresses that fall exactly at the knee length and those that fall slightly below the knee. A midi dress can vary in length and many times will not fall exactly in the mid-calf region. Similar types of rules can also be applied for these variations of dress lengths.

Types of Dresses of Different Dress Lengths

  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Skater Dresses
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Tank Dresses
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Shirt Dresses
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Tube Dresses
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Bodycon Dresses
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Shift Dresses
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Cocktail Dresses
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Evening Dresses
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Vintage Dresses
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Vacation Dresses

Accessories That Go With Dresses

  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Handbags
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Shoes
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Jewelry
  • Photo Gallery and Reviews of Belts

Feel free to leave any comments or questions below about dress lengths and I will get back to you soon!

 

 

 

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12 thoughts on “Dress Length Guide”

  1. As a guy, I do not wear dresses. It is not my thing, but my girlfriend will love this information. I did not know that different lengths of dresses conveyed different messages. It totally went over my head. Thank you for sharing.

    -Alex

  2. Being a connoisseur of women, I prefer them to utilize the services of a “pencil” dress to practically ALL occasions casual. Leave something to the imagination, at least. The full length dress can be sexy to certain occasions only, in my view. Mini ? NEVER. You are begging for the wrong type of attention. :/

  3. Thank you for detailed insights into dress lengths. This is very useful to know especially when ordering off the internet when you can’t try things on.
    I also like the different dresses that you have in your galleries too and that there are a range of body sizes and shapes shown which reflect real women.

  4. I did not know much about dresses until I read your site. Thanks for the educational information.
    I am an old fashioned and conservative Christian, so we ae always looking or dresses for our daughter that are long and that cover her shoulders. She is only but she now know what is conservatives and what is not.
    You have shown me some great dresses that do look good. For me and my family it would have to be a floor length dress and long sleeves.
    Thanks for the information.

    1. I am glad that you found the site useful.  There is certainly a lot of good information on the lengths of dresses and different types of people like different lengths.

  5. I find this post very useful since I always have a difficult time deciding what kind of dress to wear on certain occasions.

    I consider myself the conservative type so I will never opt for a mini or pencil. Instead, I always go with midi and full.

    It should be pretty easy for me to decide, but problem lies in the fact that I am quite petite, and being such, a mini or pencil is more appropriate for me.

    Do you have any advice for shorter women like myself who prefer maxi or full length dresses?

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