Casual Maxi Dresses for Spring & Summer

I’ve had a few people ask me if maxi dresses are still in style this spring, and the short answer is YES! I’m definitely seeing them around. I generally prefer knee-length styles, but sometimes a maxi dress is fun for a change. I was immediately drawn to this one because it has sleeves.

Jo-Lynne Shane wearing Caslon Drawstring Jersey Maxi Dress outfit | Spring Fashion for Women Over 40

It’s also incredibly comfortable and easy to throw on and go. The material is thin, but not to the point of being see-through. If you live in warmer climates, it should be comfortable even on the hottest days. For size reference, I’m wearing the small.

Jo-Lynne Shane wearing Caslon Drawstring Jersey Maxi Dress outfit | Spring Fashion for Women Over 40

This packable raffia tote makes a great pool and beach bag, but it can double as a daily tote if you like to carry a large bag. Straw bags are all the rage this season, but this one is a little different from the popular circle bags.

It has a magnetic-snap closure, comfortable faux leather carry handles, and interior zip and wall pockets to stash your valuables. The best part is, it’s “packable” — meaning, you can fold it or roll it up to fit neatly inside your suitcase. I brought this bag with me to Florida, and it worked perfectly for the beach and pool.

Jo-Lynne Shane wearing Caslon Drawstring Jersey Maxi Dress outfit | Spring Fashion for Women Over 40

To keep this outfit casual and on trend, I wore neutral slides.

Jo-Lynne Shane wearing Caslon Drawstring Jersey Maxi Dress outfit | Spring Fashion for Women Over 40

Since the striped dress makes a bold statement on its own, I kept my jewelry simple — pearl earrings, a gold pendant, and Alex and Ani bangles.

I picked up this necklace at the salon & spa I frequent. I wore this outfit to get my nails done before my photo shoot and realized I had forgot a necklace, so I purchased this pendant.

Jo-Lynne Shane wearing Caslon Drawstring Jersey Maxi Dress outfit | Spring Fashion for Women Over 40

As for undergarments, I always wear shaping shorts under my dresses. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been sitting behind a woman who stands up with her dress unknowingly tucked into… unfortunate places. Do yourself a favor and pick up some shaping shorts! You can thank me later.

I usually wear the Spanx Shape My Day girl shorts underneath my dresses, and they work great with this one. They have medium control so they keep everything tucked in without binding anywhere.

Another good option for under dresses is the Jockey Skimmies. They’re not as expensive as the Spanx and don’t have as much control, but they do keep everything smoothed out and help your dress stay where it belongs as you move around. They’re also moisture wicking, which is nice when it’s hot outside because they help keep you cool.

As much as I love my jeans, I have to admit that wearing a casual dress makes it so easy to get dressed in the morning. It cuts down on the choices you have to make — just pick out your shoes and some jewelry, and you’re good to go!

Jo-Lynne Shane wearing Caslon Drawstring Jersey Maxi Dress outfit | Spring Fashion for Women Over 40

stripe maxi dress // raffia tote // slides // pearl earrings // seashell necklace (boutique purchase) // charm bracelets // sunnies

photo credit: Alison Cornell

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58 thoughts on “Casual Maxi Dresses for Spring & Summer

  1. Love the maxis! They are so easy to toss on for a quick, crisp look.

    I’m sure you’d guess that I would love to follow your new home adventures.   You may also find that you enjoy having an online record of the changes that take place.  

    We find it’s handy to have that reference for our undertakings…and also helpful to get ideas and inspiration from others..

  2. I can’t wait to get a glimpse of this new home! So exciting!  That’s a wonderful idea to post some pics of the process of getting situated in your home!  Loving this maxi dress on you, but then EVERYTHING you style looks good!  You certainly have the gift of choosing really great outfits & accessorizing them perfectly.  I just bought myself a maxi dress for the 1st time in years.  It’s hard to find something flattering for this curvy, size 16 gal!  And at 5’4″,  the length can be an issue, I’m long waisted, so petites generally don’t work. I did purchase the Jockey Skimmies & absolutely love them, especially since they are moisture wicking.  I believe I sized up to a 1X since I didn’t want anything binding on my legs.  So for any curvy gals out there, these are a nice lighter weight alternative to the Spanx.  Once again JoLynne, you’ve created a stunning simple & classy outfit!  Hopefully all goes well with the home inspection!  

  3. Good Morning Jo-Lynne!
    I know how stressful moving can be. We moved almost 3 yrs ago and it was a very stressful time for our family. Best of luck with your inspection! My question for you is, do you mind sharing with me who you are using for decorating? We live not far from your area and I have been looking for someone to help me as well.
    Thank you!

  4. I love wearing dresses and plan to wear them more often this summer.  This is a cute one, but almost sold out as you noted.  I love this on you, but, I’m a little “afraid” of the stripes, so I’d have to try it on to see if something like this would work for me.  Please DO share about your new home adventures!  I love the way your writing lets us inside your head, and I enjoy following your decision making process.  I know the new house will be beautiful!

  5. Jo-Lynne: cute as ever in this dress! Would LOVE to see home progress. And we can all give our 2 cents. HA. Enjoy! Julie L 

  6. Love the dress. I wore one of my maxi dresses to church yesterday(with denim jacket over it) as my legs aren’t tanned yet.. lol so a great cover up. They are supper comfortable and nice for summer evenings out or after the beach. I’m only 5’3 and was lucky to find one in petite which made a difference if not I’m tripping over them. It would be great to see your progress on your new home if you don’t mind sharing… 
    Hope you have a great day😀

  7. I own several maxi dresses and I agree that they are so easy to throw on and go without having to add much except a few accessories! You look so great in the striped one you styled. 
    I hope your home inspection goes well and that the inspector is very thorough. When we bought our current home 3 years ago, our inspector missed several things that we could have negotiated before the final closing. Thankfully,  my husband is very handy and was able to make the repairs! I would love to see you blog about decorating your new home, please do it!

  8. Love your blog and your fashion advice. So excited about your new house and would really love for you to blog about the process. 

  9. I’d love to follow along as you decorate your house! I’m so sad the maxi you featured today is sold out in my size. I actually tried to order it the other day when it was pictured in another post. I love maxi dresses and have several, but they are all sleeveless. I’d really like a short sleeve one. I’m not an Old Navy shopper and didn’t love the pattern on the Talbots dresses. But I’m going to keep hunting!

    1. I’m hoping since it’s Caslon, they’ll at least bring out something similar. They tend to carry a lot of the same things over and over, and I have to believe it’s been a good seller for them.

      1. Yes I think your right about Caslon replacing this with something similar because I returned this same maxi in the gray and black stripes about a week before you featured it on Instagram.  The salesperson questioned why I was returning it cuz “it was so cute” 😊- I told her the gray/black stripe colors didn’t look that good on me and she said “oh well I have customers waiting for this one & I keep telling them that it’ll prob be replaced with something similar as this one was actually last year’s style.” So with lots of spring and summer clothes still be rolled out I bet there’ll be another t-shirt dress style maxi. 

  10. Love maxi dresses I am glad there still in style may have to go back to wearing them instead of the dresses i am wearing and having to put leggings under

  11. I’m amazed by how much you’ve been juggling lately and yet you still manage to keep it all together and look good at the same time! I’d love to follow your house progress along, too.

    Fashion question, though: I have a darling gray-and-white-striped maxi dress from Athleta from last summer. I’ve worn it a couple of times, and honestly, it’s just too long, even with wedges. Do you think it’s worth trying to get it shortened a few inches? It’s made of a heavy jersey knit fabric.

  12. I would love the idea of a room by room of your home. We are redorating ours so sure to get ideas from you! Love your blog and love the dress posted today!

  13. I love those coral shoes!!!! I would love for you to incorporate a section on home decorating! I hope this week is MUCH better then last week and everyone has recovered and that your move goes smoothly! We have lived in the same house 40 years! I have only lived in 3 places, but I am thinking it would help me declutter things that I no longer use if we could move and down size. Thank you for all the great posts!

  14. Very cute on you. I like maxis. Covers my legs.:) yes, we’d love to see posts on house progress. Fun.

  15. Thanks for posting a maxi dress outfit. I love this trend but have struggled to make it look casual without looking sloppy. This look is pulled together but not over the top. You’re the goddess of casual fashion!
    Also, I would love it if you started a section of the the blog dedicated to the new home journey. I am so excited for you! ( confession: I keep telling people that my “friend” Jo-Lynne just bought a new house 😃)

    1. That is too funny.  I thought I was the only one.  I was telling my husband yesterday about Cyndi S. father-in-law being so sick….same thing we went through with his dad and then about Jo-Lynne moving. I think he thought I was nuts.  I feel like they both are long time friends.  🙂 LOL  We’ve just never met.  🙂 LOL  A community with woman is fun especially when it includes fashion.  

  16. I love fashion and home decorating and there’s nothing I like better than taking a peek into others homes to see how they decorate and get ideas. Your blog is one of my favorites and this would be the cherry on the top.

  17. I’d love for you to share with us how you personalize your new home!  I am looking for one comfortable maxi dress that is not see through and has short sleeves, that won’t break the bank.  I don’t wear dresses often, but as you stated, every now and then it’s a great option and a nice change.  My fingers are crossed that the inspection goes good this morning! 🤞🏻

  18. I actually purchased this dress about two months ago and really liked it a lot but I ended up returning it because I thought maxi dresses weren’t in style any more and of course, it isn’t available in my size now :(( Darn it! But it looks just great on you and believe me, I’ll snap it up if it comes back in stock in my size. I’d love to see you include a new section in your blog on your house!! As always, I totally love your blog and the great items you share as well as where to buy them! Wishing you a great week with all you have to do!

  19. As much as I love your fashion posts,  I know I would love your home shots!  A lot of work but it would journalize the move for years to come while you entertain your following 😍 Again, thank you for sharing your life with us. 

  20. Such a cute dress!  I do love that it has sleeves. Too bad it’s out of stock in my size.  I’ll keep checking.
     And, yes, I would love to be able to follow along with your new home adventures.  Hope the inspection goes well today!

  21. Well, the dress is darling and that’s of course why it’s basically sold out. I totally agree about the slides and I feel the same way about mules. Give me my sandals…lol I wear skimmies all the time with dresses, but I really need to get the Spanx pair. My skimmies slide down and I’m always tugging at the waist. Not a good look. YES, do a section on here about the house. I’d love seeing it all. I think we’re all nosy and want to see each others homes. HA! Happy Monday! XO

  22. Love this maxi! I don’t care too much for the slides either… Good luck with the packing and moving, etc… and I hope your husband is feeling better! Since we just moved in our new home last week, I would love some ideas on home organizing, prioritizing, and all that good stuff! 😉 Enjoy and be blessed!

  23. Love this dress on you, so many great pictures too!

    It seems like a lot of retailers are releasing clothing more often, so each release isn’t stocked for long. I have had a lot on my Loft and Nordstrom wishlists and so much has sold out. Even expensive shoes that weren’t on sale, they sold out at full price. 

    I would love to see a home decor section of the blog. We need to repaint but not this year. I picked all the colors before we moved in and don’t like them anymore. It’s so much easier to keep the walls neutral so the decor can be changed out and it all still goes together. I didn’t think about things like that 9 years ago.

  24. Love Maxi dresses too! I got a great one at Dress Barn last year. I would love to see some posts on your new home! Of course that’s just me being nosy, but I also love home décor stuff too. 🙂

  25. I’m curious are those shoes difficult to walk in? It seems like they would slip off your feet all the time. Thanks1

  26. Maxis are such an easy way to dress. Lots to check out in your selection of dresses.
    I’d love to follow along with you on decorating your new home. I’d be particularly interested in how you pick a decorator that will fill your wants and needs.

  27. Would love to follow your progress as you make your new house your home! We are currently building a new home and would love to see the choices you make. Love the maxi dresses!

  28. Hi Jo-Lynne,
    What kind of jacket would pair well with a maxi dress? I need one for a brunch this Sunday. Thank you! I’m kind of hoping you’ll say Denim, but maybe it’s too casual. 

  29. Just last night I went online to order the nude slides and see my size 7 isn’t available.  I had meant to order them the first time you shared them.  Let us know if they restock please. 🙂  You look great in your photos.  I love the look of a maxi dress.  I just can’t seem to find them short enough in one that works.  I do like that yours has sleeves.  I would love to see your room to room progress, once you are in your new home.  

      1. Oh goodness….I forgot you said it comes in petite. I will have to go back and look at sizes left.  Some petites feel too short waisted, so would just have to try it on.  Thanks for quick response.  🙂  

  30. Today’s maxi dress is lovely and I really like the sleeves as well as the belt to give the dress more definition. I always wear a long necklace with my maxi dresses so thanks for showing the dress styled with a short necklace. Yes, please to a design section to your blog. I moved into my current home two years ago and I am still trying to figure out how to decorate it. I hope Paul and you are on the mend and that the house inspection goes well today.

  31. Yes, post photos of your house transformation! Sending prayers for your husband’s continued recovery and for you so that you don’t become too exhausted being Wonder Woman!
    Thanks for including Talbots. I shop there because I’m just over 5’ tall and they have an extensive collection of petites (also Plus and Petite Plus). Often I see cute things on blogs that aren’t available in special sizes, so some diversity helps.

  32. Yes to the home decor blog idea! Love it.

    Thanks for the reminder on wearing shaping shorts. Good idea.

    Good luck with the home inspection. Hope your hubby is on the mend.

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