Active Clothing

This Dress Is Basically the Leggings Equivalent of a Gown, and I Never Want To Take It Off

Photo: W+G Creative
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Thanks to some combination of COVID scheduling and the fact that I'm in my early 30s, I am in the unique position of attending 22 weddings this year... which means I need to put together 22 different outfits ranging from "beach chic" to "cocktail casual" to "black tie preferred." And as someone who has spent the majority of the past two years wearing exclusively leggings and sports bras, this is an overwhelming (and not to mention expensive) feat. Which is why when I found a dress that could work for all 22 occasions, I leapt at the chance to order it in every color.

The Norma Kamali Diana Gown ($215) is the dress of the season... and not just because it's the exact dress Carrie Bradshaw wore on her first date with that hot teacher in And Just Like That. For starters, it's what my mom likes to call "an investment piece." The one-shoulder style is timelessly chic, and it can be dressed up or down depending on your mood—pair it with strappy sandals and a pair of statement earrings for a casual beach wedding in Miami (done it) or sky-high stilettos and a pair of opera gloves for a black-tie affair in Switzerland (also done it).

@zoeweinerrr In LOVE with this gown from #normakamali ♬ The Assignment - Tay Money

When I buy a dress for a formal event, it often feels like I'm lighting money on fire because I'm only really going to wear it once—but that's not the case with the Diana Gown. Because it's pretty much a blank canvas, you can have a whole lot of fun with the styling process—it can literally be worn in a zillion different ways. Yes, it's great for weddings, but you can also repurpose it with flats and a sweatshirt for Sunday brunch, or boots and a tweed jacket for your next in-person meeting. At $220, the cost-per-wear is among the best I've ever seen.

@zoeweinerrr♬ When I Ride - Ashley Mehta


Styling aside, what I love most about the gown is that it's about as close to leggings and a sports bra as a gown can possibly get—it's so dang comfortable that I often dress it down and wear it when I want to feel "put together" when working from home. The four-way stretch material (made from polyester and spandex) is stretchy enough that I can literally do high kicks on the dance floor, and as a bonus, it won't show sweat.  It's got a built-in bodysuit which acts as a subtle form of shapewear and negates the need for a bra (I wear a 30D and it supports me just fine) and underwear (though, you do you). The only downside is that peeing in it when you're tipsy at a wedding can be... a multi-person job.

The dress comes in more than 20 different colors (I have the orchid pink, plum, celestial blue, black, white, and gold, because I couldn't pick just one), and three different lengths (short, medium, and long), and is the best wardrobe chameleon I've ever owned. Whether you need an outfit to carry you through your packed social calendar or just want to change up your standard WFH sweats, this dress will have you covered through it all.

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Our editors independently select these products. Making a purchase through our links may earn Well+Good a commission.

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