Flattering, versatile, and easy to wear, the jersey dress is a staple item for every woman’s wardrobe.
Few things combine elegance and comfort this well — a dress with the seemingly effortless ability to hug your body in all the right places without being tight or restrictive. It’s precisely this that makes it a perfect choice for all shapes and sizes.
At Lighthouse, we’re all about combining practicality with style and have kept this in mind when designing our range of jersey dresses. Many styles are made from cotton jersey, a soft and warm fabric that also contains elastane and therefore has a good amount of stretch.
Originating in the Channel Islands, jersey fabric – named after the island of Jersey, its largest landmass – was first used to make men’s underwear and fishermen’s sweaters. The earliest records of jersey knits are from the Middle Ages, with the fabric gaining popularity throughout Western Europe during the Renaissance and Enlightenment periods.
Its influence continued to spread, with England soon becoming a major textile importer. By the mid-1800s, jersey fabric had also become popular in the US, later becoming the default fabric for men’s sports shirts – or ‘jerseys’.
But it wasn’t until Coco Chanel began to include jersey fabric in her designs after the First World War that jersey began to be seen as chic and elegant. Chanel was attracted to the extreme elasticity of the fabric and saw a potential for womenswear. She later opened her first shop in Paris, featuring various jersey designs.
Many of her clients, who were used to luxurious materials in her designs, were shocked by her choice. But it soon became a hit. “I make fashion that women can live in, breathe in, feel comfortable in, and look younger in,” she famously said.
Competing designers quickly adopted the latest fabric trend, including Mary Quant, arguably the most iconic fashion designer of the 1960s, who produced thousands of jersey dress designs.
Pullover pinafore jersey dresses were a key part of Quant's first Ginger Group collection, launched in 1963, with bonded wool jersey (wool jersey with a synthetic jersey back) soon becoming her go-to option and providing the stretch and structure required for the minidresses and simple shifts she was known for.
Other designers who have since become known for their use of jersey include Diane Von Furstenburg, who famously used colourful jersey fabric to make her long sleeve wrap dress.
Today, jersey dresses are an easy way to make a statement, paired with knee-high boots for an elegant finish, or dressed down with trainers for a stylishly casual look.
For Lighthouse, the Autumn/Winter 21 season brought Zoey, a denim-look dress which offers comfort but with added contemporary features. Accentuated with two front pockets, a scoop neck, and ¾ length sleeves, wear it to glide effortlessly from shopping or meeting friends to coastal ambles.
This season also saw the arrival of Ivy, an elegant, yet comfortable statement dress that’s perfect for any occasion. Whilst ¾ length sleeves and a scoop neck provide a flattering fit, the back neck zip and contrast chambray detailing at the neck and hem elevate this deceptively simple t-shirt dress into a wardrobe classic. Ivy is currently available in a fun Urban Grey Geo print and Raspberry Geo print.
New arrivals for Lighthouse Spring/Summer 22, include Lena, a t-shirt dress that is easy to wear and can be dressed up or down, taking you from the beach to an evening stroll, via a shift in the office, and a barbecue with pals! Its cotton-elastane blend also gives it stretch and makes it supremely comfortable, especially in the warmer months. Lena’s wrap bodice detail and set-in sleeves add to its flattering shape, with two front pockets for a chic and stylish look. Choose between the Abstract Leaf design , a contemporary interpretation of a classic floral print, or the Pink Stripe design for a statement look.
Lyla is another brand new addition to the Spring/Summer Lighthouse range, and proof that effortless dressing doesn’t need to be dull. With just the right amount of stretch, it’s your ticket to all-day comfort and one of our favourite mid-length dresses for the new season. Lyla’s scoop neck makes it casual enough to wear with trainers on outings to the park, yet versatile enough to dress up with accessories for cocktails on the terrace. Alternatively, why not layer with a smart jacket and heels for a workwear look that’s fun yet classy? Opt for the Cloud Midnight Stripe , or plump for the Teal Pink Orange , for that pop of colour.
Both Lena and Lyla are part of our Women's Dresses & Tunic collection and are machine washable.
Take the hassle out of dressing for in-between days. Shop our website to find the best jersey dresses for your style.Back to all Articles