After two years of wearing (mostly) sweatpants all day, the “home tailoring” game is strong, but sweat and sand don’t mix. So we went on a hunt for the best dresses in New Zealand to greet the sun this summer.
From recycled yarns to linen in a hundred ways and contemporary Maori designer dresses, many of these looks are signed by local brands. Almost all of them have earth loving elements, which makes these yarns a better choice than their fast fashion counterparts.
Here are the best New Zealand dresses to shop this summer.
Pini Lucy and Yak organic mini dress
With GOTS certified organic cotton and a tiny bit of elastane, this dusty pink Pini Mini Dress was handcrafted in India by tailors paid a fair wage. Plus, it’s SO cute.
Aere Tiered Cross Back Linen Dress
For a fully-fledged summer princess atmosphere, this Linen dress with crossed back rufflesin white or black, ticks all the boxes.
The Keep Fantasy Shin and Me Shirt
There will be only one question in your mind when you spy this loose shirt dress in yarn-dyed silk with shell buttons and a pretty collar: blue or yellow?
Dress Layplan Studio Nancy
Made from unsold polyester, we think this full-length tangerine Nancy dress is super dreamy.
Kinney Rou Slip Dress
Match your picnic mat, jams and napkins with this cute look from Kinney. the Rou slip dress is made from French linen and features a V-neckline that is mirrored in the back.
Recycle Boutique Vintage Floral Dress
Be the inner-outer flow in this american vintage dress dotted with flowers. There’s literally one, so if you like it, you better put it in your cart, stat. And if you miss, stick around and browse their shelves — in-store or online — you’re sure to find a pre-loved piece of jewelry.
Princess paper bag
Another great second store to buy a summer dress in Tāmaki Makaurau is Princess paper bag on the road to Karangahape. With up to 1,000 pre-loved items arriving each week, there’s a dress (and more) for every mood.
Afends Billy – Hemp Long Checked Dress
Made with a blend of hemp and Tencel (which is a more eco-friendly alternative to rayon and viscose), this maxi dress in foam tiles is light and fluid, a perfect choice for summer.
Kinney Bowie Dress
For summer days with a burst of drama, we love everything about the bowie dress by Kinney, from the balloon sleeves and pockets to the fact that it’s made from 100% linen.
Rubi Soon Maternity linen nursing dress
If you’ve recently made a little human – amazing, by the way – you can still look totally chic while nursing in this linen number with ruffled sleeves by Soon Maternity.
Papa Clothing Bub Dress
By now you understand that we have a (major) obsession with linen and that’s because it’s quite high on the list of sustainable fabrics. In this beautiful linen Bubble dress in blush by Papa Clothing Pacific Island/Pakeha designer, Keva Rands, you’ll live out your floating fantasy.
Dress Mitchell Vincent Pou
This muscle back slip dress was designed to embody the silhouette and strength of the Maori pou. It’s made in Kirikiriroa/Hamilton from end-of-line textiles, which means it’s great for you and Papātūanuku.
Kinney Clara Reversible Dress
Sometimes you just want to rock your clothes to the back, and the Clara reversible dress totally oblige. Opt for a cut-out under the bust and a flowy paneled skirt, or a simple square neckline that can be cinched, depending on your mood.
La Vida Bow Tie Mini Dress
For a whimsical, Alice-in-Wonderland-meets-Mexico vibe, you can’t go wrong with the La Vida Bow Tie Mini Dress made with linen.
Cloth & Co – Boxy organic cotton t-shirt dress
Organic cotton is free from harmful chemicals used in the production of inorganic cotton, which makes it better for you and the environment, and since organic cotton seeds are cheaper than inorganic seeds, they are also better for you. Farmers. This product certified GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) organic cotton boxy t-shirt is perfect for relaxed summer days.
Elsie Bodysuit Dress in Bamboo
Bamboo Body stands for stylish comfort and their casual t shirt dressmade with the brand’s own stretched bamboo jersey is no exception.
Princess Highway Cockatoo Shift Dress
Seer & Wilde Water Kimono
Made in Aotearoa from 100% linen, this one size fits all Japanese inspired water kimono can be dressed up or down, even over a bathing suit, and the belt doubles as a headband or scarf, depending on the occasion.
Cosmic Black Organic Hemp Strappy Slip Dress
Hemp requires very little water to grow, making it a solid choice for a more sustainable wardrobe. This sweet slip dress– with all-important pockets – is made from a blend of organic hemp and GOTS certified organic cotton, and is naturally antimicrobial, UV protective, moisture wicking, insulating and odor resistant. Well, shit.
ReCreate Plaid River Dress
Pania Tongariro long dress
Plant lovers will fall in love with this sleeveless Tongariro Maxi by Pania. It is made in Aotearoa from light linen, perfect for summer, and its color is reminiscent of linen.
On the way to the beach? Get some new clothes this summer with New Zealand’s coolest swimwear.
Image credit: ReCreate, Cosmic, Aere, The Keep, Layplan, Kowtow, Kinney, Recycle Boutique, Paper Bag Princess, Afends, Kinney, Soon Maternity, Papa Clothing, Mitchell Vincent, Nichola, Kinney, La Vida, Cloth & Co, Lucy and Yak, Bamboo Body, Princess Highway, Seer & Wilde, Cosmic, ReCreate, Pania.
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