Perfect little black dress

The little black dress, that Christmas party staple, is a bit of an enigma. It is both one of the blandest elements of a woman’s wardrobe – as the default option when stuck for what to wear for an occasion – and a stubbornly  timeless, persistently revisited icon. Essentially a simple black cocktail dress, the garment goes by the affectionate nickname of LBD, which has its own entry in the dictionary.

According to André Leon Talley, a contributing editor at Vogue who recently staged an exhibition dedicated to the LBD, the term ‘little black dress’ first appeared in 1926, in an American Vogue illustration of Coco Chanel’s first black ‘Ford’. Vogue editors had named the dress after the era’s democratic black Model T automobile, predicting that the straight, long-sleeved design in unlined crèpe de chine accented with four diagonal stripes would “become sort of a uniform for all women of taste.” They were spot on.

The garment cut a radically modern figure, as much for its stark design as its sober shade, which since the Victorian era had been associated with mourning. For Chanel, black was the definition of simple elegance and, ever disregarding of conventions, she helped bring the colour into everyday wear. Among the displeased, rival couturier Paul Poiret is said to have sniped at Chanel in the street, “What are you in mourning for, Mademoiselle?” The equally scissor-tongued designer is said to have retorted: “For you, dear Monsieur.”

Some of the timeless pieces ,currently available on the market:

1.Hervé Léger pioneered body-sculpting dresses in the ’80s and has since become a favorite among stylish celebrities like Beyoncé Knowles, Emma Roberts and Chrissy Teigen. Don’t miss our edit of the brand’s signature bandage designs in an array of colors and silhouettes.

Hervé Léger Lace-up bandage mini dress

£698.75  Was £1625    57% off
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2.Founded in 1961, Yves Saint Laurent was the first couture house to introduce the concept of luxury prêt-à-porter with the 1966 ‘Rive Gauche’ collection, synonymous with youth and freedom. Under the creative direction of Hedi Slimane since March 2012, Yves Saint Laurent continues to position itself at the summit of the luxury universe.

Saint Laurent Embroidered tulle mini dress

£1590  Was £3975    60% off
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3.Founded by Pierre Balmain in 1945, this iconic Parisian label epitomizes power dressing. Influenced by the confident style of modern women, creative director Olivier Rousteing has redefined the brand’s high-octane aesthetic whilst remaining “true to the vision and trailblazing spirit of its founder.” Expect daring cutouts and signature tailored silhouettes.

Balmain Ruffled silk-georgette and cotton dress

£1669.50  Was £3710  55% off
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