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9 best shirred dresses to add to your summer wardrobe

Effortless and flattering, these are the shirred dresses worth having on your radar

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Sophie Bates
Commerce Writer
June 20, 2024
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Nothing is worse than feeling suffocated by tight clothing during the warm weather, which is why floaty dresses are essential for summer. From milkmaid dresses to striped pieces, we're seeing so many stylish options on the high street now – and the shirred dress is my new favourite. 

Combining a breezy full skirt with a gathered stitched bodice, shirred dresses are just as flattering as they are stylish, and the staple trend will never go out of style. The fit-and-flare silhouette works for every body type, and the wearable shirred design looks so effortless paired with trainers, chunky sandals, and mid-size heels

Shirred dresses aren't just for daytime dressing either, I've found some stunning options with a classic smock bodice and relaxed skirt that will be perfect for the special occasion in your diary.

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princess kate tory burch floral dress in belsize © Samir Hussein
The Princess of Wales stepped out in a floral shirred dress during her visit to Belsize in 2022

How I chose the best shirred dresses

  • Style: Whether you're searching for a shirred maxi dress to throw on all summer or a formal style to pair with heels, I've picked out a range of styles in black, pink, and off-white colourways. 
  • Price: Stylish investment pieces don't need to break the bank, which is why I've selected shirred dresses at a range of price points, starting from £30.
  • Trusted brands: While I haven't tried on all of the dresses in this edit, I've only included brands that are known and loved by the HELLO! Shopping Team. 


M&S Square Neck Shirred Midi Dress

marks and spencer green shirred dress © M&S

  • Sizes: 8-24
  • Colours: Green, Black, Pink

Editor's Note: Marks & Spencer's shirred midaxi dress is trending for a reason. The emerald green shade is perfect for brightening up your summer wardrobe, while the shirred bodice creates a flattering shape for wearing with sandals or trainers all summer.


New Look JDY Shirred Bodice Maxi Dress

new look black shirred maxi dress © New Look

  • Sizes: S-XL

Editor's Note: New Look's stylish black maxi dress is the ultimate day-to-night piece. It has a square neckline thick straps and a flared skirt that will look just as elegant paired with flip flops and gold jewellery as it would with espadrille wedges and a raffia bag for a holiday evening ensemble.


Nobody's Child Ditsy Floral Beau Midi Dress

nobody's child blue floral shirred dress © Nobody's Child

  • Sizes: 4-18 
  • Colours: Blue, Green, Pink

Editor's Note: For an ultra-feminine shirred dress to wear on repeat this summer, try Nobody's Child's blue smock dress. It features short puffed sleeves, a figure-skimming A-line skirt, and a scoop neck, finished with a pretty ditsy floral print that's easy to wear for days in the park, on holiday or to work.


ASOS Rhythm Shirred Midi Dress

asos shirred cream dress © ASOS

  • Sizes: 6-14

Editor's Note: Off-white dresses are a top trend every summer, and ASOS's version is ticking all the boxes. Featuring a stretchy shirred bodice for comfort and a floaty tiered skirt, the breezy style will look effortless teamed with white trainers and a denim jacket during the day, and I'd recommend elevating the look with a pair of bright pink heels and a matching clutch bag for formal occasions.


John Lewis ANYDAY Shirred Bodice Asymmetric Dress

john lewis shirred one shoulder blue dress © John Lewis

  • Sizes: 6-20
  • Colours: Blue, Brown

Editor's Note: John Lewis has nailed the day-to-night summer dress with this shirred midi. It comes in the prettiest powder blue shade, with a figure-hugging bodice and a full skirt. The one-shoulder design perfectly elevates the look, and I'd recommend opting for a pair of chunky dad sandals and a crossbody bag to round off the ensemble.


Abercrombie & Fitch Emerson Linen-Blend Puff Sleeve Dress

abercrombie and fitch pink shirred dress © Abercrombie & Fitch

  • Sizes: XXS-XXL
  • Colours: Available in six colours

Editor's Note: A linen dress is a popular choice during the warmer weather due to its lightweight feel and stylish appearance – and Abercrombie & Fitch's version gives a unique twist to the classic style. The pink shirred midi features exaggerated puffed sleeves, ruched detailing, and a tiered skirt with pockets.


Free People Hi Hello Shirred Midi Dress

Free people orange bandeau dress © Free People

  • Sizes: XS-XL
  • Colours: Orange, White

Editor's Note: Free People's stunning orange dress screams summer. It features a strapless design with a smocked bodice, removable straps, and pretty lace trim, finished with delicate embroidered detailing. I love it styled with a pair of black strappy sandals and gold trim sunglasses to complete the look.


Reformation Sariah Dress

reformation red shirred midi dress © Reformation

  • Sizes: 4-16
  • Colours: Red, Mushroom

Editor's Note: A more formal take on the shirred style, Reformation's red Sariah dress looks incredible paired with black mule heels and chunky gold jewellery for summer occasions. It has a vintage-style full skirt with a fitted smock bodice that cinches the waist for a flattering finish.


River Island Stripe Puff Sleeve Smock Dress

river island shirred dress © River Island

  • Sizes: 6-18
  • Colours: Stone, Black, Brown, Red

Editor's Note: River Island's striped smock dress is the ultimate throw-on-and-go style. Featuring a midi silhouette, a square neckline and feminine puff sleeves, the effortless style could be worn for any daywear occasion, while the tie-back gives an added touch of style.

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