Summer is almost upon us, and that means dress season is here! I always prefer wearing a breezy sundress or a smart day dress over shorts and a tee shirt. Dresses are simple and more flattering for my figure, keeping me cooler in the sweltering Midwest humidity.
For some time now, Target has been collaborating with top designers to create affordable Designer Dress collections. These collections have been absolutely incredible, offering unique designs and quality fabrics at a fraction of the cost. Seriously… styles that normally sell for $500 or more are offered at only $50-60 in the Target collection.
This year’s featured designers included RIXO, Christopher John Rogers, and Alexis. The best part is, the collection was offered in sizes 0-30 and XS- 4X. (Way to honor inclusivity, Target!) Stores offered a small selection of styles, and a much larger collection was available online. I found it really hard to decide what to order. It did require waking up at 2 AM to order when the collection dropped, but luckily, nothing I wanted sold instantly this time around. (Ahem, Vineyard Vines collab!) In the end, I selected 12 dresses to try at home.
Shipping was pretty quick, though they did arrive in small batches over the course of a week. One thing I was a bit disappointed about, which has absolutely nothing to do with the designers or the garments, was how much packaging was used to ship the dresses. Seriously, they came in three giant boxes and two flat plastic mailers. Each box had a couple of dresses, along with a pile of air-filled plastic, and each dress was wrapped in a plastic bag. That is a LOT of waste to be recycled… there has to be a better way.
RIXO: RIXO is a British brand started by two best friends who are passionate about art and vintage design. For me, this was the part of the Target collection I liked the least. Even shopping online, the silhouettes and fabrics were the ones I did not feel pulled to as strongly. Most of the dresses were slip style dresses that are thin and unstructured. With an apple shaped figure, I need a little more definition in the fit of my clothes. The Rixo collection also ran a little large. I loved the polka dot mini dress, but it was very baggy in the bust and underarms. I would have loved to try it in a size down, but it sold out quickly. Though these would look perfect on some, it was easy to eliminate them from my keeper pile.
Christopher John Rogers: Louisiana born, Christopher John Rogers is a new name in fashion that has earned acclaim in the last year. Rogers has designed for many women I admire, including Lizzo, Ashley Graham, Michelle Obama, and Kamala Harris. His designs feature structured tailoring, voluminous skirts, and bold color.
I ordered the most from his collection. The use of color and full, flowy skirts really drew my eye… plus, they have pockets! I absolutely LOVED the cobalt blue maxi. It fit like a dream, and the color is perfect. I wanted the plaid dresses to be perfect for me too… there was just a tiny flaw. There was a bunch of stiff crinoline attached only at the hip area in both of them. It made me appear much boxier than I wanted… and I am not cutting something out of a designer dress to make it work.
Alexis: Alexis was established in 2008 by a mother-daughter team. The brand is focused on elegance and femininity, with a nod to vintage design and world travel. Unsurprisingly, this was the collection I fell in love with. Every single dress just felt like ME the second I put it on.
The dresses were romantic and even FELT expensive. The green dress is perfect for a summer wedding or dinner on the beach. The red dress makes me want to be a flamenco dancer. And the shirt dress is perfectly vintage. Let’s be real… I can’t return any of these.
Target continually does a fantastic job of bringing quality and style to the average person. I love the partnerships they forge in fashion, beauty, and home decor. Hooray for being bougie on a budget. I also appreciate the inclusivity they promote through their collections. It’s unbelievably nice to have the chance to try on so many wonderful dresses in Plus Size. I didn’t need another reason to love Target more… but I was still given one. To me, Target, you are perfect.