Reader M had an interesting question about where the heck to find suits with dresses (instead of skirts or pants) these days:
I’d love an article on buying suits that are dress + jacket combinations (as opposed to skirt/pants + jacket combinations). They look a more polished, they eliminate the step of finding a shirt to go underneath the jacket, and they’re one less thing to pack on trips. AT’s selection is limited – I own both and love them; Talbots’ is matronly. Need ’em conservative enough for court appearances, but not “mother of the bride.” (I’m 35.) Slightly fashionable would be a bonus!
Great question — and you’re right, they are disappearing; it was a bit of a hunt to find some to feature here. Readers, do you prefer to wear suits made up of a dress and blazer — or do you prefer other suit separates like pants and a skirt? Where are your favorite dress and jacket skirts from? (We discussed non-suit dress+jacket combinations in this post…)
Some options I found for you on the market right now, below (the individual pieces range from $159-$435):
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Pictured at very top of post: Gray dress and blazer (actually a tiny black dot pattern). A few other options not pictured: cobalt sheath dress with matching jacket, gray suit with dress, plus size dress and blazer with piping
Some easy tips: On the budget end, check out TJ Maxx and other similar discount places — a lot of times these dress+jacket suits are sold on a single hanger and can be found for some serious steals. If you like colorful suits or suits with a lot of colorblocked details, keep an eye on Macy’s and Lord & Taylor — they have a lot of brands like Kasper, Tahari, Calvin Klein, and Anne Klein that I traditionally associate with this kind of look.
On the higher end, keep an eye on Boss, Theory, Reiss, and Brooks Brothers — they often have suiting separates that include dresses — and on the much higher end, St. John’s suits often have a matching dress.
Readers, let’s hear from you — do you like to wear suits with dresses instead of skirts? What do you see as the pros and cons to the look? Where’s your favorite dress suit from — and where would you go to look for one in 2018?