The Duchess’s Wardrobe: A Review – Whistles Bella Dress

The Duchess wore a printed blue Bella dress by Whistles twice last year. Once at the opening ceremony of the Olympics and another time at the Diamond Jubilee concert. She usually pairs the dress with a black belt.

 photo whistlesbelladress_zps48f1addf.jpgBella is described as “An ultra flattering, shift dress with a round neck, elbow length drawstring detail sleeves and a silk finish. silk 90%, elastane 5%. Zip closure to back. Length 90cm.”


 photo 1_zps6274362a.jpg

Left to Right: plain blue Bella dress, printed Bella dress.You can see the details on the plain blue Bella dress clearer.

Thoughts: Take note that the Bella dress seems to come in different lengths. I noticed there’s 90cm, 94cm and 96cm. Sometimes the Whistles website will indicate the length differences with the tag ‘Longer Length’ although Whistles has informed me that there is a greater demand for the longer length, so the Bella dresses are likely to be produced only in the 96cm length in the future. I personally find the so-called ‘longer length’ way too short! At 96cm, it is several inches above my knees and most inappropriate for work when the dress code is conservative. When I sit down, the damn dress has a tendency to ride up higher to mid thigh…its ok if you are desk bound but at functions where I have to sit without a desk, I find that my handbag is perpetually glued to my laps…

Perhaps you might suggest that I wear my Bella with black tights but mind you, if you are in the tropics and anyone who’s experienced the heat and humidity will understand when i say “tights? in this weather? black tights?? are you nuts?” and yes, I do note that I sign off as ‘Nutty’ but seriously black tights is fine for the weather in UK but most definitely not in the tropics.

Interestingly I read that the Duchess is 178cm tall…so that means she’s slightly taller than me…if she has the older/shorter version of the Bella, I do not expect to see her wearing this dress during the summer…but, the Duchess does seem to like wearing clothing with higher hemlines…

The Bella dress is available both in plain colours and printed colours. If you wish for the waist details to stand out more, I suggest you consider the plain versions. However, do note that if you expect the detail at the waist to hide that slightly protruding tummy of yours, I suggest you look elsewhere. I tried both the designs and even the printed version on the right seem to emphasized my tummy! The detailed waist design combined with the pleated neckline seemed to generally enlarged my entire front! Most definitely not a look I was going for…

I personally find that the Bella design is cut slightly smaller than the Jocelyn, another Whistles dress that has similar characteristics to the Bella. Whistles does not seem to be producing any more Bella dresses.

Verdict: Bella does not suit my full figure.

To read the rest of the reviews on the Duchess’s wardrobe, click here.

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