One Item, Five Fashionable Ways: Five Shift Dress Outfits

dress outfits In this week’s installment of this series on how to get at least five different looks from one piece, I decided to focus on shift dress outfits.  The shift dress is a common staple for many working women, and once the weather gets warm a dress is easy to just throw on and go.

However, like any wardrobe staple, a shift dress can get boring if you wear it just one way over and over again.  Like I do with every piece in this series, I am going to show you how to make five different looks with this one dress.

I chose this dress by T Tahari for a few reasons.  First, T Tahari is the lower priced line of Tahari and can be found in major department stores.  If you like the Tahari look, but not the Tahari price tag, check out T Tahari instead.  Secondly, I chose a coral dress because coral isn’t only hot for spring/summer but it’s what is referred to as a universal color, which means that it is a shade that looks good on all skin tones.  If you’re looking to add color to your wardrobe, you can never fail with coral.

Check out the five shift dress outfits below for some inspiration and ideas on how you can wear this piece.  If you don’t like this color or don’t care for the dress, use these tips for any shift dress that you want to change up.

Five Shift Dress Outfits

Look #1- Coral Shift Dress with Pops of Green 

T. Tahari Cap Sleeve Sheath Dress Look #1

Coral and greens like emerald and teal work really well together.  The bib necklace add some dimension and picks up the teal shade which I also used in the handbag.  Lastly, I added my favorite staple, tan shoes.

Here are some updated shopping suggestions to create the look

Look #2- Coral Shift Dress with Patterned Shoes 

T. Tahari Cap Sleeve Sheath Dress- Look #2

When you wear color don’t be afraid of pattern.  A python shoe is a novelty style that can act like a solid neutral.  Lastly, I just grabbed a mid-brown handbag, an incredibly versatile handbag to have in your closet, and accented the look with coral earrings and a gold bracelet.

Want to recreate the look?  Here are some suggestions.

Look #3- Coral Shift Dress with a Bold Belt

T. Tahari Cap Sleeve Sheath Dress - Look #3

Another color that works with coral in small doses is royal blue.  Shift dresses can be changed up with the simple addition of a belt.  I further brought the blue shade into the look by adding a scarf that can simply be wound around the neck.  Lastly, I used that easy mid-brown bag again and the tan shoes from the first look.

Here are some shopping suggestions to get the look

Look #4- Coral Shift Dress with Soft Cardigan 

T. Tahari Cap Sleeve Sheath Dress- Look #4

If you’ve been following this series, you may recognize the cardigan I am using in this look; it’s the cardigan I styled five different ways two weeks ago.  The goal of this series is to not just show you how to use one item five different ways, but how to also better utilize all the items in your closet.

For a softer look, I went with a mint green necklace and a softer tonal peach handbag.  For warmth and style, that draped cardigan was grabbed along with a sandal instead of a pair of pumps.

Check out these other shopping options to create the look

Look #5- Coral Shift Dress with a Novelty Pop 

T. Tahari Cap Sleeve Sheath Dress- Look #5

When looking for novelty pieces for your wardrobe, it is very important that you think about the colors of the things you already own.  If you don’t, your novelty item will come home with you and just sit in the closet.  This is why it is also important to keep your wardrobe tight– the less you have the less you will have to keep track of.

When I saw this cardigan it seemed so perfect for this shift dress.  It not only picked up the coral shade but brought in the green accent which gave me a perfect opportunity to pull that green bag from look #1 into this outfit.  Additionally, for softer, less corporate look, I used the sandals from look #4.  Paired with some soft jewelry, the outfit is finished.

Here are some options for shopping for this look

Still looking for a coral dress?

Check out these additional styles

  • Laura

    Great post! I didn’t know that coral was a universal color. It would be so helpful if you would write a post focusing on all the universal colors. Thanks for all the valuable information you give us everyday.

    • You are so welcome! Yes, coral is a universal color! I can focus a post on this but the other shades are teal, watermelon pink, soft grey and navy. There may be some others, too.

  • Stacie

    Though I don’t have a coral dress..I do own cobalt blue and emerald green…this post was great in giving me ideas on how maximize my cobalt and green dress!!! Thanks!!!

    • I am so glad you were able to draw some inspiration from this post! Thanks for the comment!!