It’s been a while since I reviewed a new dress brand. This week is my first writeup of the UK label Pretty Dress Company (PDC).
I discovered the brand several years ago through my usual vintage-style retailers and bought one of their Priscilla spaghetti-strap swing dresses. But the Priscilla wasn’t the best fit on me (too-long straps, too-short bodice, and slightly small in the bust). But the quality was outstanding, so even though Priscilla might not get much wear, I’m still open to trying other styles.
While PDC carries quite a few vintage-inspired looks, most of their dresses are quite modern and even a little on the basic side.
My business partner and I have been going on a lot of meetings with potential clients lately, and I’ve come to realize that I don’t own much clothing that is professional yet still gives off a creative vibe (I need to appeal to architects, artists, and real estate developers all at once). The one dress I’ve been wearing to meetings over and over is ivory (almost true white) and I really like the way it looks on me, plus it gives loads of freedom to select colorful accessories.
So when I found this ivory PDC “Charlotte” dress on final clearance at Unique Vintage, I jumped at it.
I measure 38”-29.5”-42” at the moment with bra size 28GG/30G (UK) and height of 5’6”. The PDC size chart lists size UK 12 (medium) as 37”-29.5”-40”. So it sounded perfect at bust and waist, but I was a little concerned about the hips being too restrictive. The Unique Vintage description called the fabric “stretchy,” though, so I took the chance.
It turns out Unique Vintage was totally accurate, and the stretch is just perfect!
As I expected, the quality is stellar. The dress is fully lined with an outer layer of 97% polyester 3% spandex crepe, and the lining a smooth, breathable 97% polyester 3% spandex blend. They stretch at the same rate so the lining stays perfectly in place.
It’s a bit difficult to see since my hand is on my hip in all the shots, but the left-hand side of the dress has slight gathering to give the skirt a bit of contour. It also helps camouflage the tummy and adds some asymmetrical visual interest.
I am wearing a shapewear skirt in the photos to keep everything smooth and make my tummy a little flatter, but the dress fabric is firm enough that you could skip the shapewear as long as you stick with seam-free, non-digging underwear. Otherwise there will be visible pantylines.
I think the dress fits over my curves really well and the open neckline is very flattering. Yet my cleavage is fully covered and the half-length sleeves cover most of my arm tattoos, so I feel totally comfortable wearing it in a professional setting. I also caught a glimpse of my butt from the side in some store windows, and I think my rear looks pretty cute in it too!
Finally, the bust also fits really well. It essentially has modified princess seams that stop at the top of the bust instead of continuing up and into the armpits.
Sizes UK 8 (extra-small), and 14 (large) through 18 (2XL) are still in stock on Unique Vintage for only $64 (originally $152!), while yellow, navy, and pale pink are on sale for £59 direct from Pretty Dress Company in sizes 18, 18, and 16, respectively.