Friday Frock Love – Tea Time

Friday, June 22, 2012

The Tea Dress has become rather a fashion staple for a touch of vintage style over the last few years.

Unfortunately this has led to everything from a floral mini dress to a to a maxi dress with sleeves being described as a tea dress. But done properly, the tea dress can be very flattering, easy to wear and look smart.

Technically a tea dress or tea gown was an easy to wear dress with a length around calf length that would have been worn for more informal dining or entertaining, such as dinner with the family only.

These days a dress described as a tea dress tends to be of cotton or other light fabric, fall between the bottom of the knee and the bottom of the calf and have short sleeves, a fitted bodice and a skirt that skims the hips. Keep your eyes peeled in Charity Shops, as the style was a very popular one during the 80s and if you’re lucky you can pick them up quite cheap. If not then eBay, as ever, is a good place to look for vintage tea dresses for about £15-£20.

In case that’s a bit like hard work, for todays Friday Frock Love I’ve found some great tea dresses from the High Street and online.

Bow Print Tea Dress – £38 – Dorothy Perkins

The cheapest I found with a decent length, many cheaper versions seem to fall above the knee.

Bright Blue Pin Tuck Tea Dress – £59 – J by Jasper Conran

Nice pin tuck and keyhole detail, and I love that colour.

Midi Tea Dress with Pleat Lace Insert – £60 – ASOS

Also comes in an acid yellow that makes me feel a bit queasy, but the lace inserts are an unusual twist.

Florence Dress by Annie Greenabelle – £64 – Topshop

Florals are a traditional tea dress print, and I like the cute Peter Pan collar.

Biba Tie Neck Tea Dress – £125 – House of Fraser

Pricy, but nice, and I think we all know my fondness for green by now…..

6 Responses
  • LandGirl1980
    June 22, 2012

    I have no need of any more dresses – but – if someone would like to buy me the green one? Anyone? No? *weeps*

  • Anneke
    June 22, 2012

    I had a look in a couple of vintage shops recently, and to my utter disappointment, they were all shortened to mid thigh length! The seams were not even in matching thread and it was very badly done. It broke my heart.

  • Perdita
    June 22, 2012

    I find tea dresses very practical for work. I am developing a fondness for very obviously 80s plaid ‘little house on the prairie meets lady Di’ styles!

  • Fi Phillips
    June 22, 2012

    As usual, my favourite is the most expensive. Love that green.

  • Kim
    June 23, 2012

    I love the green dress. Even though my fella works in HOF, I still don’t think I could justify that price, it is lovely though. Love the Topshop dress too. I’m going to have a go at making some Peter Pan collars this weekend to update a couple of outfits x

  • Susie
    June 24, 2012

    ARG! I want! I wish those were all dresses you found over here in the states. Lovely post!