9 Ways to Style a Black Sleeveless Dress

9 Ways to Style a Black Sleeveless Dress

One of the most versatile wardrobe pieces you can have in your closet is a little black dress, also referred to as an LBD. It’s a must-have for many of us!

While you may think of a black cocktail dress when considering an LBD, a casual version can be even more versatile, depending on your lifestyle.

I recently added this Stella Carakasi LBD to my closet. In fact, it’s only been mine for a little over a week and I’ve already worn it out twice – once to a fundraiser, then again last Friday night to an art show featuring my friends, Abi of Abi’s Farmhouse Kitchen, an oil painter, and Michelle Hoting, Sonoma County jewelry designer.

It’s already become my ideal dress to wear for casual and dressy-casual occasions. I can style it for chilly winter days, rainy days and springlike days this time of year when the temperatures reach well into the 70s.  Sleeveless with buttery soft Art Silk fabric, I can also wear the Freestyle dress throughout our hot summers.

I decided to get out my jackets, coats, sandals, hats and jewelry and play around with my new frock. Here are my favorites:

9 Ways to Style a Black Sleeveless Dress

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

The Freestyle Dress is a somewhat simple black sleeveless dress with a few surprises. It’s a high-low dress that reaches below my knees in back and a few inches above the knee in front. It has a flattering V-neck and the shoulders are wide enough I don’t have to worry about bra straps showing like I do with thin straps.

My favorite detail is the on-seam pockets. I just love a dress with pockets!

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

I wore tights (this brand is my favorite) in the next several looks to keep my legs warm on cool winter days.

In my first outfit, I added a Chanel-inspired jacket by Cynthia Rowley that I bought at Marshall’s a few years ago. It has little flecks of pastel colors that are enhanced by my Rose Quartz necklace by Kay and Star, which I wore for February’s H0w I Wear My.

I wore pumps with this ladylike outfit. I have a hard time wearing tights with pumps unless they have some sort of ankle strap to keep me from walking right out of my shoes. These suede pumps from Sole Society tie around the ankle. No need to worry about stepping out of these pumps.

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

Next I added a luxurious Alpaca wrap and felt wool black hat, both from Montecristi Panama Hats of Napa Valley. I wore tall black boots and leather tassel necklace in cognac, also by Kay and Star.

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

This wrap is so incredibly soft and surprisingly warm for not being very heavy. I can easily bundle up for more warmth by tossing one side of the wrap over my shoulder.

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

For an edgier casual look, I wore a gray camouflage silk bomber jacket by Equipment with a long silver necklace and combat boots by La Canadienne.

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

For a vibrant and colorful outfit, I tied a long silk scarf I bought secondhand ages ago around my neck and let it hang down in front.

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

What an easy way to add color to an all black outfit!

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

When it’s raining, as it had been consistently so far this winter until recently, I wear my Calvin Klein raincoat, Hunter boots and carry one of my Persolé shades which is both a UV protective parasol and an umbrella.

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

And when temperatures rise, I trade the tights in for bare legs. These open toed booties (similar) got a lot of action last spring and summer. I love the neutral color which goes with practically every spring and summer outfit.

I added a long fringed cardigan by Nic and Zoe that I bought last summer at Hotel del Coronado (similar) and a leather tassel necklace by Kay and Star (similar). A dressed up Boho look.

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

This summer when it’s hot, hot, hot, I will take advantage of the lack of sleeves on this dress. Here I wore another Kay and Star necklace (similar) – can you tell I am kind of into their jewelry? And a lightweight felt hat, also from Montecristi Panama Hats of Napa Valley. My new suede lace-up sandals are from ASOS.

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

This is a very casual, running errands look. I wore super comfortable Toms slip-ons, a denim moto jacket (similar) and a Serenity geode necklace to tie it all together.

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

My last look is one I would likely wear to a spring or summer lunch meeting or out to dinner on a warm evening. I love the taupe color of this faux leather jacket and the soft mushroom shade of the pumps, both softening up the deep black.

9 ways to style a black sleeveless dress

The right black dress for you and your lifestyle can take you from errand-running to date-night and from cool temperatures to hot. I love having foundational pieces in my wardrobe that are not only incredibly versatile, but comfortable and great quality as well.

Having a piece that is so versatile, then taking the time to style it in a variety of ways is a budget-friendly way to dress. I know I have at least 10 outfits, counting these 9 looks and the outfit I wore to last month’s fundraiser. I know with time and creativity, I will create many more!

Do you have go-to black dress that will work for many different occasions and seasons?

Be sure to use my code, RICHLIFE15, at Stella Carakasi to take 15% off your purchases (including sale items).

I am linking up with #iwillwearwhatilike, Shoe and Tell, and Visible Monday.

Make it a rich day!



Disclosure: The Freestyle Dress was given to me by Stella Carakasi. All opinions expressed here are my own, as always. 



  1. February 8, 2016 / 11:00 am

    Great post, really shows the infinite possibilities of LBD. My fav combination is the last one, with grey jacket and shoes. Interesting lines.

  2. chrissy
    February 8, 2016 / 11:07 am

    Love them all! It’s amazing how many looks you can get from one little black dress.

  3. February 8, 2016 / 1:53 pm

    🙂 What a pretty and practical dress at the same time. So versatile! That’s what it’s all about and you style it so very well, Adrienne 🙂
    Yes, I have a LBD, too, that I can dress down or up, depending on the occasion. Found it recently for a steal in an outlet, so the price for the alteration was money well spent. It’s one of these dresses that you wear and feel good in.
    Have a very HAPPY week and greetings from Vienna,
    Claudia .-)

  4. February 8, 2016 / 6:53 pm

    Lovely LBD! It’s insane how you came up with 9 ways to style the same dress!

    Abby of Life in the Fash Lane

  5. Kathy
    February 9, 2016 / 5:08 am

    All great looks. My favorite is the camo bomber jacket and combat boots – great!

  6. February 9, 2016 / 10:36 am

    Love your different looks! Great tips ! thanks for sharing 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Privacy Policy

We do not share personal information with third-parties nor do we store information we collect about your visit to this blog for use other than to analyze content performance through the use of cookies, which you can turn off at anytime by modifying your Internet browser’s settings. We are not responsible for the republishing of the content found on this blog on other Web sites or media without our permission. This privacy policy is subject to change without notice.”