A Casual Drawstring Dress for Summer

Happy hump day, friends. Welcome back to 22 Days of Summer Fashion, a stylish collaboration with Cyndi Spivey! Today I’m styling a tweedknit drawstring dress from LOFT.

It’s been going in and out of stock, so I wanted to get this out to you while there is still a good selection of sizes left. It’s also 40% off with code SUNNY.

This dress is another good alternative to shorts for casual events, running errands, or just hanging out at home.

I love a dress with an elasticized drawstring waist because it helps shape the waist area, and it stays in place. Plus, you can set it where you want it to get the proper proportions.

This one is Lou & Grey for LOFT, and it’s made of a nubby textured fabric in a creamy ivory that’s reminds me of vanilla ice cream.

I personally think vanilla ice cream is severely underrated. What about you?

People get all excited about different flavors with all sorts of mix-ins, but there’s nothing quite like a bowl of plain vanilla ice cream on a hot summer day. Plus, it’s the perfect accompaniment to fruit pies and crisps.

But I digress… back to this dress!

The dolman cuffed sleeves are a nice touch, and it also has a slightly rounded hemline. The skirt fits straight without flaring or clinging, and best of all, it has pockets!

This dress measures 37″ from shoulder to hem, so it falls a few inches above the knee on my 5’5″ frame. It runs true to size; I’m wearing the small, for reference.

I paired it with these snake print thong sandals. These are the Gigi by Sam Edelman, and they’re one of his most popular styles. They’ve been around for years.

The snake print picks up the beige tones from the dress and brings a nice texture and pattern to the look. I also like this style for a less expensive option.

If you’re not a fan of snake, brown or gold sandals would also look great with this dress.

FYI, I recommend sizing up half in these sandals. I’m wearing the 8 1/2, and they just fit.

Because this dress is rather plain, I wanted to jazz it up with some fun accessories. I added a Victoria Emerson boho cuff and a pair of acrylic hoop earrings.

Unfortunately both styles are sold out, but Victoria Emerson has tons of other great pieces. This Bilboa cuff is similar to mine.

As for the earrings, I’ve actually had good luck on Amazon. I love this pair of tortoiseshell hoops, and they’re under $10!

I also carried that straw hobo that I shared on Monday. It’s also sold out, but you can shop a lot more straw bags at Nordstrom, and I also love this Brighton one at Zappo’s, but it’s more expensive.

My Rag & Bone sunnies have a brown base to their tortoiseshell frames, so they seemed like the perfect choice. This pair is similar and on sale, and this pair is a similar style for under $100.

This outfit is perfect for casual get togethers with friends, dining out, or whatever else you might be up to this summer. It would also be great for travel days because the dress is stretchy and and comfortable and doesn’t wrinkle.

Outfit Details:

dress // sandals // bag // sunnies (option) // similar earrings // similar bracelet

Be sure to visit Cyndi and see the summer look she’s styling today!

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photos: Alison Cornell

Join the Conversation

51 thoughts on “A Casual Drawstring Dress for Summer

  1. Hi Jo-Lynne. My husband always orders vanilla ice cream too! All those flavors and he gets vanilla! I was wondering if you would ever do a haul for Target, Kohl’s, or Amazon. Sometimes it’s fun to see less expensive alternatives. You have occassionly shown pieces from Amazon and they are usually at a good price point. Just something to consider. I enjoy reading your blog everyday.

  2. That outfit is summer perfection! Do you think you could do a “what we’re eating” aspect to your blog or on Instagram? Because you eat healthy, I’d love to see that.

  3. LOVE this outfit! I like the 5 ways to wear posts and maybe a post on pattern mixing if you are up for that 🙂 As it gets closer to the fall, transition pieces/ 5 ways to wear so you can extend your wardrobe. Thanks for all you do Jo-Lynne! Hope everything is ok with your hip.

  4. I love everything about this dress on you! Great choice.

    Ideas for July content: I love outfits and you are the very best at telling us WHY the outfit works (or doesn’t!). Love the “5 ways” stuff, but you could make it easier on yourself, like a top with 2 or 3 different bottoms. OR a dress with several shoe choices. OR even showing how changing the jewelry changes an outfit. 

    And maybe it’s just me, but I often wonder HOW you shop Amazon (or any other sites besides Nordstrom’s, which you give lots of info on) to find your excellent choices.

    Enough from me…I’ll read anything and everything you write! MAKE IT a great day!


    1. Ugh, between you and me (and the other hundred people reading along, lol) I hate shopping for fashion on Amazon. I generally stick to their private labels – Daily Ritual, Amazon Essentials, Core 10, Lark & Roe, etc.

  5. I purchased this dress as soon as I saw it on you. I think it was instagram? Anyway, I decided I needed  more summer dresses as I am going back to the gym for my kickboxing class after work and needed something easy to change out of at work. The gym dressing room is open but I didn’t want to spend more time in any other part of the gym than I have to. We have to register for the class in advance as they reduced the number allowed per class and wear a mask to walk in but can remove once the class starts. I was so excited to go back and still a bit anxious since COVID cases are increasing here in San Antonio but I just needed to get back to my routine and it’s just gotten too hot to walk or run anymore. Hope this dress looks as good on me as it does on you. 

  6. This dress is so cute on you and shouts comfy: However…. I just can’t handle vanilla ice cream unless its topped with hot fudge sauce… YUM… or just forego the vanilla and have the chocolate… can you tell I am not a vanilla fan LOL chocolate all the way… One of the nicest summer outfits from your series 🙂 I always love the 5 ways to style an item. Have a good one!

    1. Oh I love vanilla ice cream with hot fudge sauce. My grandmother used to make it with a can of sweetened condensed milk and a square of unsweetened chocolate. YUM.

  7. This dress looks fabulous on you!  It is so cute!  I love this shorter length on you and the colour is perfect. I personally find it makes you look younger 😍

    Unfortunately with the Canadian dollar exchange rate the dress would be $95 before shipping and duty which I find too pricey for a little summer dress. 

    I love the 5 ways to wear it and also the style tutorials!

  8. I love your blog! I am in the outskirts of Illinois, so we seem to have the same seasons of dressing styles. I love the what I really wore posts. It would be great to see more of the 5 ways to wear series. I also like the personal touch you add to your blog posts. Hope everything comes out well with your tests.

  9. This dress is really cute! I’m assuming it’s thick enough that you don’t have to wear a slip?
    I always enjoy your 5 ways to style a garment posts. I’m a plus size, so I don’t usually find my size in your posts but it gives me ideas and I can usually find similar items in my size. Thanks for your blog I read it almost every day. 

    1. Yes, no slip needed.

      I’m happy more brands have inclusive sizing. Hopefully that trend will continue and more of the items I find will be available in plus sizes.

  10. Love this entire outfit on you!
    July ideas from me:
    ‘Favorites‘ post that’s not fashion: things like favorite coffee, pen, podcast, tv show., lip gloss…whatever! I love to see what other people are enjoying!

    I also think a Kohl’s or Amazon haul would be nice to see.

    I read your blog and email daily…love it!

  11. I really like that dress and you look so nice in it!  I know it’s dangerous to assume, but I assume that it is not see thru or doesn’t require additional undergarments.  I really enjoy and learn a lot from your ‘five ways to wear an item’ posts.  I have a new pair of army green capris that I am trying to select various color tops from my closet to wear with them.  I don’t necessarily want to wear the expected or safe color.  It sounds like you had a very enjoyable afternoon yesterday.  Waiting one week for the MRI results is very reasonable to me.  Make it a great day!

  12. The dress is super cute on you! I would love to see easy eye makeup tutorial. I have trouble making my eyes look pretty 💖

  13. Hi! This is a lovely dress and I like the short length on you. I really enjoy your style tutorials as I always learn so much. But truthfully, I will read everything and anything that you write.

  14. Happy Hump Day! I really enjoy your five ways to wear it and selfishly would like seeing this again. Definitely a vanilla gal – it’s just a true American staple in my humble ice cream loving opinion. This dress is amazingly simple and casual and perfect – absolutely love it!


  15. What a pretty dress!  Perfect for summer and a great alternative to shorts.  I agree: vanilla is under rated.  We went to Mexico one year and had the best vanilla ice cream there and it changed my mind that vanilla is not “boring” especially when you see the flecks of vanilla bean in the ice cream.    I like the other comments about what you are reading or watching.  it seems like our social lives have shrunk so much that its nice to know what others are doing to stay sane. I read your blog daily; have no strong feelings about content.  Good luck with your rest results. 

  16. I love the dress on you. I didn’t know what those types of sleeves were called, but I’ve always liked them. I think the proportions of the dress look great. Too bad Loft doesn’t have my size (or maybe that’s a good thing). 

  17. I love this little dress. Unfortunately, it would be a little too short on my 5’8” with long legs body. 

    I love the Three/Five ways To wear an item of clothing in one post so I can see it at a glance.

    Trends for fall would be a good post. We all want to know what is still current in our closet and what we should add to update.

    I’ve started intermittent fasting again. Third time lucky? I would love posts on what you eat in a day. You’ve done so well in losing and keeping the weight off. 

  18. I love this look on you it’s so casual and adorable. I think you styled it perfectly. And I agree with you on the vanilla
    ice cream…. Everything goes with vanilla😉

  19. This is such a cute dress! Could you please let me know if you have to wear a slip with it? Also, is it see-through? Thanks!!

  20. Cute dress, but already sold out in my size 🙁
    I LOVE the try-on hauls the most! I also like when you show what you wore but include what you started with an how you changed it so we can follow your creative process. I’d also like to see more Insta Stories and don’t think you have to save those for “big” things–personally, I like to hear a little chit chat while I’m doing something around the house. Food would be great to include in that–what you’re eating, cooking, buying, etc.

  21. Cute dress!  I would love to see more posts  about casual above the knee summer dresses .  I’m 5’4” so midi dresses are not very flattering.  Thanks so much for your posts!  I look forward to reading them every day!

    1. Me too, like Miriam I’d like to see more casual t-shirt style summer dresses, not too short to wear in place of shorts.  I did just order this one you styled. 🙂  

  22. I think the dress is super cute on you! It is the perfect length for a casual dress. I would love a dress like that, but I guess it doesn’t come in petite. At barely 5’2″ I am afraid it wouldn’t look as good.  

  23. Love the dress! I need to get it. 
    Take us into your bathroom. Do a quick rundown of your skin care products, then all of your makeup products, including lipstick/lipgloss, then your shampoo/conditioner, styling products and hair spray. Then show us how you store all of those items. Also show us what you typically carry in your purse.

  24. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this dress.  You look so great in it.  Perfect fit for you. I just ordered for me in the XS.  I’m 5’3″ and usually wear XS in Loft, so hoping it fits and not too short.  The shipping takes so long, its disappointing if it doesn’t.  There wasn’t a Small left to even order with the XS.  Thanks for styling this.  Its perfect for me, as I don’t really feel comfortable in shorts. I just can’t seem to get the right length and fit for some reason.  Would help if my legs were more in shape. UGH!!!  Hope all goes well with your hip pain.  That has to be hard.  

  25. Everything about this outfit is perfect and it looks amazing on you! Ideas for July posts…
    I would enjoy seeing more of your home and outdoor spaces; possibly some links for accent, décor or serving pieces for both indoor and out. Thanks again for being a bright spot on some dark days in this crazy year!

  26. Darling dress and I went right to the link to purchase it. BUMMER it is already sold out except XS L XL and none of those sizes would ever work. Hope it restocks…wishful thinking?

  27. Love the dress! Almost as much as I love really good French vanilla ice cream!  My hubby makes homemade ice cream.  Every once in a long while he makes vanilla just for me! 

  28. Oh my goodness – this dress is so cute!  And you look lovely in it!  The vanilla with those sandals is a perfect pairing.  If I had your legs, I’d be ordering it in a heartbeat!  🙂

  29. Adorable dress! I would love to see more posts of multiple ways to wear something. Another thought is to create several outfits incorporating old items in your closet with something new. Like a “shopping my closet” sort of spin. Thanks for asking for our suggestions of future posts!

  30. This is a 5 star dress on you! I really want it but they’re out of my size, will keep checking back. Post possibilities…a weekly family photo munching Caroline’s latest recipe; if you wrote out your Christmas list right now what would be on it; you decide the event/occasion and Caroline vs Becca choose the clothes, shoes, purse and accessories that you wear; favorite perfumes; if we had to shelter in again in the fall, would you do anything differently, personally;

  31. You look great from head to toe! Every detail is perfect. Went straight for the dress but no M. You know what a sucker I am for purses…contemplating the Brighton😳
    Since I only recently started following you, I’m not sure what the style tutorials are, but I’ve enjoyed everything you have shared so far.

  32. I like when you post the difference on an old trend v. a new trend. For example, one time you posted about jeans and showed jeans from a couple of years ago and then the current, saying that the higher rise and more of an ankle length is more on trend now. I don’t always see the nuances of a trend and what makes something look outdated.

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