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Dress over pants outfit ideas come in all variations of length like the tunic (super mini) to below the knee (midi). So to speak the look is always there. However, it is less noted when the shorter variant has its moment. Read how to get the look right for even for the harder to style just above and below knee lengths.

  1. My First Dress over Pants Ensemble Was Red and Blue
  2. Dress-over-pants Street Style Chic
  3. Denim-dress over Skinnies for a Trendy, Modern Look
  4. Try a Tunic or Mini Dress for an Unmatched Look
  5. Wrapping Up Dress over Pants Outfit Ideas

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My First Dress over Pants Ensemble Was Red and Blue

When I was a kid, I liked the pants under dress look. I was so happy when I got a dress-plus-pants combination in jersey. The dress was red and blue colored blocked and the pants were blue. Later I got my sister’s corduroy dress-pants combination as a hand-me down. I loved the sleek look of the ensemble. A belt defined the waist. Well sometimes one gets a hand-me down that is just awesome. Back then in the 70s, the look was that both items were made from exactly the same fabric. Back then you wouldn’t put the look together of two different pieces. This means the look has changed tremendously.

Today the dress-over-pants look requires two items that weren't bought as an ensemble for that look. #modernstyle #trendsover40 Click To Tweet


Dress-over-pants Street Style Chic

Looking at the street style photos from Fashion Week a new version of wearing the 1970s inspired trend is It. The street style stars went for see-thru dresses, dresses with ruffles, high-low hem dresses, sweaters over the dresses and even skirt over pants.

Obviously, in the above mentioned looks, a lot is going on already regarding the upper part of the ensemble. Consequently, straight cuts work best. However, some of the trendsetters even pulled the dress-over-pants look off with flared or cropped jeans.

The photos below show examples of how to wear this street chic version in a sophisticated, mature way.

street style dress over sequin trousers with side slits jumper hood jacket
White House | Black Market sequin trousers, Sam Edelman bag, ethic Thai earrings, flower ring, Prada pumps, knotted opera-length pearl necklace, LeatherCoatEtc. gloves, jumper c/o Femme Luxe, and dress with side slits c/o Coolibar


The above look works with all neutrals, and plays with texture (sequins, knit). Both the jumper sweater and dress have side slits. The pearls a classic touch.

sheer dress under mini dress with cropped pants
Unbranded mesh dress, Victoria Victoria Beckham mini dress, Calvin Klein sling backs, White House | Black Market cropped straight pants, layered pendant necklaces


To get the proportions right in the above inspiration, the cropped pants require high heels. The color scheme of the mini dress  is picked up by the plateau sling backs with respect to burgundy and the mesh dress.

Like with Stylishly mixing prints and patterns, grounding the look is key. Both of the above street style outfit inspirations use black as the grounding color.


Denim-dress over Skinnies for a Trendy, Modern Look

Monochromatic is big this season and so denim-on-denim. Therefore, pairing skinnies with a denim dress is a safe option for a cool and rainy pre-fall day. When using the same colors you can create a tall, slim monochromatic look. When going with denim, try a different wash for the bottom and top as a variation to keep things interesting.

self made achate statement necklace
Zoom-in on my self-made necklace


style blogger in dress worn over pants
Outfit details: Liz Claiborne denim dress worn over J Brand skinnies with statement belt, DIY necklace, DIY cuff, Festina watch, Hermes collier de chien cuff, BCBG belt, Anne Klein logo open-toe pumps, and Jaeger tote


The look below features the same idea as the example above, but with different colors of the denim.

midlife woman in posh casual work outfit
Inspiration with different colors of denim


#fashionover50 Casual Friday work outfit for women over 40
Outfit details: Liz Claiborne dress, statement DIY necklace, Burberry trench coat and bag, Anne Klein open-toe pumps, Dolce & Gabbana Madonna sunglasses, and jeggings c/o No nonsense. See the No nonsense leggings review.


Skinnies are a favorite among Alaskan women for a variety of reasons. One of them is that they look great with kuspuks of all length. Note that a kuspuk is the traditional wear in Alaska for both men and women. The version for woman has a ruffle hem. See the post at the link for a photo of me working in our yard in a kuspuk.


Try a Tunic or Mini Dress for an Unmatched Look

Speaking of kuspuks wearing them over jeans is an unmatched look. You can easily create such unmatched looks with tunics or mini dresses from your closet. The following photos show dress-over-pants outfit ideas using a floral mini-dress with dress pants. To make the look work use a color that occurs in the print.


Stylist tip: Black is great to ground an outfit.


stylist in green floral mini dress worn over black trousers
Shein floral print green dress, Paloma Picasso belt, Orvis pants, GNW lace socks, double G loafers, and Camel bag


fashion over 40 woman in dress over pants
Outfit as above, but paired with Lookbook Store motorcycle jacket as outerwear


The next example shows a look that goes beyond black as a grounding color. In stead, this look uses the color of the dress that the snake print repeats. You can find more on styling snake print pants at the link. In the look below, the knit mini dress serves at a long sweater. More on styling knit dresses in this guide.


#styleover40 mature woman in knit dress over leather pants
Back view mini dress over snake print leather pants


#fashionover50 dress over pants for work #styleover40
Outfit details: Barbour cable-knit dress, Sienna Studio leather pants, vintage bangle, Clark booties, pearl studs, pendant necklace, Kieselstein Cord belt and belt buckle


Yes, you can wear this dress over pants combination to the office.



Wrapping Up Dress over Pants Outfit Ideas

In a nutshell, apply the same tricks that you use when styling a tunic with pants when you wear a mini dress with your trousers. When going for a denim-on-denim look different washes are best.

Do do like the dress-over-pants trend? How do you rock this look?

Never worry again what to wear when. Learn How to Dress for Success in Midlife with my evergreen styling book. Buy it now.

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Photos of me: G. Kramm

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