Little White Dress (Shift Style)

We often hear about how every closet should have a little black dress. While that piece of closet advice is valid and wise, it is just as important to have a little white dress in your closet for those summer months.

My favorite style for summer days is then shift dress. Shift dresses tend to have a looser fit to them around the waist area. They tend to fall straight or even have a little A-line shape, making them an easy, comfy choice for those hot summer days.

Since this spring, I’ve been browsing for the right little white dress to add to my wardrobe. As you know, all of my pieces have to have a special factor to them — a little twist or a little something different than the usual basics. So, when I laid eyes on this unique floral lace shift dress by Cynthia Rowley, I knew I had found a winner. (Thanks to my friend Rosie who led me to this dress. She got the red version.)

Little White Dress : Top 20 Picks

After searching so much for a little white dress for me, I came across plenty of great options. So here are the top 20 picks, with an emphasize on the shift silhouette. These pieces cover all sorts of price points, with many of them on sale. Click around, and see what you like!

(Then keep scrolling for more details on my exact look…)

My Little White Dress Look

Cynthia Rowley dress (here and here; also comes in red, black and blue; also comes in a sleeved version) | Aquazzura suede wedge espadrilles (here and here) | Prism sunglasses (here) | Deborah Lippmann blue orchid nail polish (here) | Nars jungle red lipstick (here) | Jennifer Fisher silver bracelet (here) | Judith Ripka ring (similar on sale here) | Hermes Birkin bag – vintage, red 25cm (available here; on loan from my friend Donae of The Vintage Contessa – fabulous destination for luxury vintage goods; other lesser priced red bag options here and here)


Do you have a little white dress in your closet? Which one did you like best here? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this closet classic. Have a great day!


Photos by Ashley Cardoza 



  1. Mischelle says:

    Love your dress and great picks too 🙂


    1. Carrie says:

      Thank you, Mischelle!

  2. Missy says:

    Those shoes are to die for! You look beautiful!

    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks, Missy! They are super comfortable too. I’m wearing them with everything now.

  3. Vanessa says:

    Love a great LWD! Fab!
    xoxo, Vanessa

    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks, V! Hope you’re having a great day.

  4. Rachel says:

    You look beautiful in this dress and I love all of your picks.

    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks a bunch, Rachel!

  5. Sheri says:

    Hi Carrie,
    Great post for Monday! I hadn’t thought of a little white dress before but I can see that it likely would be quite practical in the summer. I love your wedges. I have been wearing a pair of Josef Seibel black wedge sandals frequently — they are more stylish than their reputation is known for 🙂

    If you happen to find some slightly budget friendly/comfy options in wedges, similar to yours that would be great too 🙂
    I could use with a second pair!

    1. Carrie says:

      Sheri – You should definitely add a little white dress! I’m seriously wearing this white dress and my Tibi blush dress all the time. I’ve even considering getting it in white!

      As for wedges, my apologies for not including other options. I was more focused on the white dress part of this. Hands down, my best recommendation for reasonably priced, comfy wedges are Elaine Turner wedges. I particularly like the cork versions. Note I find these to run a little large.

      Let me know if I can help with anything else!

    2. Sheri says:

      Oh, I really like those Elaine Turner wedges. I see a pair I think I should order. I’m usually an 8.5 — do you suggest I try an 8?

    3. Carrie says:

      Hi Sheri –

      In all my usual shoes (Aquazzura, Louboutin, etc.), I wear a 40.5. In the Elaine Turner, a 40 was large on me (although I do have very narrow feet). I’m not sure that’s a definitive answer, but I personally would probably go down half a size.

      If it doesn’t work, you can always exchange for another pair. Elaine Turner is founded and based here in Houston. Their team is fabulous to work with!

      Hope that helps.


    4. sheri says:

      Thanks 🙂

  6. Jennifer says:

    Such beautiful lace details! Love how you styled it, too!

    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks so much, Jennifer!

    1. Carrie says:

      Thanks so much, Michele!

  7. Merritt says:

    love this one by CR you’re wearing! The subtle floral detail is so pretty!

    The Style Scribe

    1. Carrie says:

      Thank you! Isn’t Cynthia Rowley fun? I sometimes forget to visit her site, but when I do, I pretty much love and want everything. 🙂

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