Cheryl Shops Spring Shopping Guide: Cutout Dresses

Fashion is definitely having a sexy moment. This may be because we're moving away from the colder, powerful '80s working-woman look into a more optimistic, early-'90s-inspired one. Bandage dresses were all the rage last fall, and they've evolved into cutout dresses, which were all over the spring runways. While cutout dresses come in all shapes and sizes, I think they're actually sexiest when they leave a little to the imagination. Then again, if you are fit and you know it, to paraphrase The Streets, there's no shortage of snug-fitting styles for you. And while I hadn't intended this to be an all-black story, it turns out cutouts are a current (and, yes, sexy) way to update the LBD for spring and summer.

This Preen dress at first appears intimidating, since the cutouts are at the side, right at the waist and hip. But it has lace insets, which will help hold you in and camouflage any less-than-perfect skin. I also love the asymmetrical detail at the neckline.

This jersey cutout dress by Brit designer Aminaka Wilmont is minimalist sexy, and I love how the wraparound effect of the cutout complements the dramatic back slit.

If you want to try the trend but don't want to expose anything in the hip or waist area, this Michael Kors sheath is a great alternative--it conveys the idea but in a way that's flattering for a wider age and body-type range.

Max Azria sent a bunch of great cutout dresses down his runway last September; this crepe dress is one of them. The asymmetrical shoulder detail and asymmetrical hem make it a little more interesting than the typical minimal dress.

Another great straight-from-the-runway look is this Alexander Wang ponte dress, which has that athletic look of Wang's spring collection, but is much less gimmicky. Skintight silhouette aside, since most of the cutout detail is in the upper back, it's a slightly more wearable style.

One of the most universally appealing dresses I'm featuring here is Theory's Jacobi dress. Its lower-back cutout is tame in the grand scheme of things, and yet that's an area that, like the shoulders, is flattering for most women. (Note: If you have a lower-back tattoo, I'd caution against this one.)

This lace cutout dress from BCBGeneration reminds me of the Preen dress above, although its cutouts are even more subtle, and I like how the lace repeats at the hem. This is definitely a nighttime dress, but it has a more classic look that will outlast the cutout trend.

Not at all subtle is this Arden B one-shoulder dress. In fact, if I had to give this dress a name, it would be the "dress to get laid dress." Not that there's anything wrong with that--I say if you've got it, flaunt it.

This Silence & Noise dress, on the other hand, could be called "business in front, party in the back." Not recommended for those who require a bra, it is, nonetheless, quite hot and, on sale for $39.99, quite affordable.

No comments