An embellished dress is any dress that integrates different materials or details with the fabric to create a look that goes way beyond basic. This may mean beading, embroidery, sequins, fringe, crystals, rhinestones, lace, mesh, and other appliques. Similar to mixed media clothing, the combination of textures, weights, and colors on an embellished garment is what sets it apart from everyday wear.
While we commonly think of wedding or evening gowns as those dresses best suited for embellishment, you can find a dress in just about any style with intricate details. Shift and sheath dresses can be found in lace or with an embellished neckline. A-line dresses pick up some extra flare with sequins or fringe. And mini dresses are the perfect canvas for beading, mesh, or studs.
The trick is not to over-accessorize an embellished dress. You don’t want to take away from the detail of your outfit with jewelry, shoes or a bag that steal the show. Keep your accessories muted with a classic heel, unadorned clutch and simple earrings.
Simple embellishment, such as neckline detail, is appropriate for the office. But most embellished dresses should be reserved for special occasions such as cocktail parties and weddings. And you absolutely can’t go to Vegas without one!