Personal Shopper: A Birthday Dress for Greg's Lovely Wife

Greg O. writes, "Hey Outblush! My wife's birthday is coming up soon (November 3rd) and I want to get her a nice dress. We both like a bit of a retro cut to our clothing, like this number here, but I'm certainly no expert at women's styles. So I come, hat in hand, to you ladies for your advice. My budget is around $100. A bit about my girl: She's a bit on the short side but with a great figure. She's soft-spoken but is also passionate about what she believes. She looks great in just about anything but especially good in white, yellow, and blue. Also, she's graduating with her Master's degree this year and is entering the "professional" era of her life. I am super proud of her and want her to know. She's either a size 4 or 6. As for things she does not like, let's see... she doesn't like clothes that are too static-y, shoes that hurt her feet, or looking too young.Thank you very much! Greg"

No, no, thank you for giving us all a reason to start our work day off with a little "Awe!" There are tons of fabulous dresses out there, but I decided to go with styles that are flattering on shorter women and are classic in style with a little bit of a retro flair for added detail. We also want your wife to open up her gift and be wowed, but get some longevity out of it as she starts her professional career. I hope I've helped point you in the right direction!

One of the best places to find gorgeous dresses in your price range is Shabby Apple. I picked out the 1) Pina Colada Dress ($96) and the 2) Bernini Dress ($84) to give you a sense of their style. Take a look around the site--you may find something you think fits your wife's personality perfectly!

The 3) Moulinette Soeurs Verdant Slip Dress ($70, on sale) has a great print and plenty of versatility. She can show a little shoulder skin come date night, and then toss it on with a blazer to make it office-ready. Likewise, there's something so romantic about the 4) ASOS Sleeveless Midi Dress with Pleats ($70) that should definitely provide that "wow factor" right out of the box.

If you're willing to stretch your budget just a smidge, the style of the 5) Trashy Diva 1940's Dress ($121) certainly fits the vibe you're going for, and it's got a playful print you don't see every day. Last, the 6) J Crew Aveline Dress ($70-100 depending on color) is a safer, classic choice that still shows that you put a lot of thought into her gift! Good luck--let us know how it goes!

Frustrated in your search for that perfect leather handbag, red stiletto pump, or whatever makes your heart go thump in the night? Click here to check out our requests for you, the reader, and to contact us, and we might do the shopping work for you in a future Personal Shopper feature!

layla-pic.jpgLayla here: At a strapping 5'2", I've got plenty of tricks up my sleeve for fellow petite girls who need to look fashion fabulous. Plus, I make all of my beauty purchases online just so I can get free trial size samples in the mail. If you're not sure about a product, chances are I've tried it! I'd be glad to recommend my favs. I also have a knack for men's apparel and gifts, especially geek guy gifts, thanks to the expertise of my own gadget-inclined guy.

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