As a shorter gal (I'm 5'4"), I've spent a decent amount of my life tripping on maxi dresses designed for taller folks. Over the years, I've learned that a "midi" dress will be more like a "maxi" dress for me. But not this summer folks: As far as I'm concerned, it's hot (petite) girl summer—and I'm only wearing maxis that actually fit my frame, and won't cause any injuries.
All of us deserve to twirl into summer without tripping on our skirts or winding up with a thin layer of dirt on the bottom of our apparel. So below, I've culled the interwebs (and done plenty of twirling myself) to ensure that the following summer sundresses hold up on summer walks, beach frolics, and long nights out dancing to the songs of the summer.
Below, you'll find dresses that range from casual to formal at various price points. One thing they have in common, though? They're all comfortable and summer-ready. Alright short fam, let's shop.
The best petite maxi dresses for all your summer adventures
Everyone in the Well+Good office owns one of these dresses—and for good reason: the stretchy, comfy fabric is a true joy to slip on. Whether you’re lounging around the house, heading out for brunch, or throwing this on over a swimsuit, you’ll feel effortlessly comfortable and receive a deluge of compliments. You can style this with flip-flops for a more casual look or dress it up with some over-the-top heels if you’re hitting the town. The airy silhouette will also ensure that you’re never starved of airflow—no matter how balmy the summer night gets.
The square neck cut will never go out of style—and neither will this dress. This simple spaghetti-strapped garment flows around your body for a never-too-tight feel, and includes a beautiful button detail at the nape of your neck. Throw it on with a light jacket, or slip it over a long-sleeved tee on cooler nights. You can even rock a tortoise shell belt or a ribbon around the waist—if you’re into it.
Enjoy a strapless moment with this frilly white sundress that looks great over a bikini. You can wear this one for a casual dinner out or dress it up with big chunky necklaces, earrings, and rings.
This strawberry Starburst colored dress includes ribbed detailing across the chest for a subtle, elegant look. While the dress shows most of the ankle of the 5’10” model, it fully covers the ankle of shorter folks—so plan to wear it with platform sneakers or high heels rather than flats.
Nothing says summer quite like unnecessary, gratuitous bows—and this dress delivers just that. The soft material and flattering square neckline make this one feel like a glorified nightgown… and I mean that as the best possible compliment. If you must wear shoes, go with something equally cozy like simple slides or Birkenstocks. I wore it with my hair up in a braided bun, and received many kind compliments.
I am so in love with this dress! The neon green pineapple print offers the piece a fun “I’m at the beach!” vibe, and the flirty slits looked (dare I say) great on my shorter legs. At first, I felt a little unsure about the warm turtleneck vibe, but the bathing suit-like fabric is comfortable, cooling, and never claustrophobic. Wear it with elevated sandals or white sneakers and drink something as fruity as your dress to celebrate.
For cooler summer nights, this Cypress knit dress is a must. While the fabric is slightly more reminiscent of fall and winter weather, the buttons down the front mean that you could easily wear your suit underneath just in case an opportunity to swim presents itself. If you’re my height or shorter, expect a longer silhouette (about ankle length) compared to the pictures on site.
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