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It’s time to graduate from your minis, midis and maxis, and embrace the easiest and breeziest fabric of all: linen.

You’d be forgiven for assuming that linen, that summer stalwart, was reserved primarily for breezy trousers and boxy shirts. But, as Freedom Day fast approaches, with its promise of partying properly for the first time in almost a year, it’s time to turn our heads to the most ubiquitous and party-friendly member of the linen family: dresses.

Whether you prefer your dresses thigh-skimming, knee-flirting or ankle-grazing, linen dresses have been purveyed by a clutch of brands including Instagram favourites Sleeper, Faithfull the Brand and, of course, Cult Gaia. These are dresses so great, in fact, that it feels like an occasion to actually just wear them, and all they need in terms of styling is a touch of bling and your favourite summer sandals.

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Really, it couldn’t be easier. Not only does linen allow your skin to breathe, but it also flows beautifully, allowing for a picture-perfect, sunny-season-ready frock. Put simply: they’re summer personified. Here are a few of our favourites. 

  • Kitri Blythe pink linen smock dress

    Kitri Blythe pink linen smock dress

    Can Kitri do no wrong? Apparently not, no. And if you’re not sure about clashing red and pink, just look to Max Mara and Jacquemus for proof that it’s very, very en vogue.

    Shop Kitri Blythe pink linen smock dress, £145

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  • Sleeper Belle linen dress

    Sleeper Belle linen dress

    Sleeper’s dresses are cult for a reason. Think Disney fairy princess but IRL, and that’s just the vibe they imbue. 

    Shop Sleeper Belle linen dress at Full Disclosure, £157.50

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  • Reformation Barrington linen dress

    Reformation Barrington linen dress

    Off-the-shoulder and with a thigh-high split, could it be that earth-first brand Reformation jumped into our minds and crafted our actual dream dress? Yes, yes it could.

    Shop Reformation Barrington linen dress, £285

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  • Asceno Ibiza halterneck organic linen maxi dress

    Asceno Ibiza halterneck organic linen maxi dress

    Punchy citrus brights are big on the fashion menu for summer, and this tangerine-toned maxi is the perfect way to embrace the hue. Simply throw on and go. 

    Shop Asceno Ibiza halterneck organic linen maxi dress at Selfridges, £380

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  • Asos Design Curve square neck ruffle smock midi sundress

    Asos Design Curve square neck ruffle smock midi sundress

    Gingham is as synonymous with summer as strawberries and cream. If you’re in the mood to usher a bit of the pattern into your wardrobes, then say hello to this midi number.

    Shop Asos Design Curve square neck ruffle smock midi sundress, £28

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  • Bondi Born Elba linen mini dress

    Bondi Born Elba linen mini dress

    Picture it: hair scraped back from your face, statement gold earrings and a pair of strappy sandals, all worn with this linen mini on a beach somewhere hot. Well, if not a beach, maybe just a bar. 

    Shop Bondi Born Elba linen mini dress at Net-a-Porter, £445

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  • Cos linen mini wrap dress

    Cos linen mini wrap dress

    For when the sun decides to *actually* shine, this linen wrap dress is perfectly breezy and appropriately easy.

    Shop Cos linen mini wrap dress, £69

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  • Cotton On Curve linen shirt dress

    Cotton On Curve linen shirt dress

    When the sun beams and all you want to do is feel the closest thing to naked that you can, a simple linen shirt dress is definitely the best way to go. 

    Shop Cotton On Curve linen shirt dress, £29

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  • Solid & Striped green linen maxi dress

    Solid & Striped green linen maxi dress

    Punchy apple green is a faultless summer hue, and this tiered maxi is the ultimate way to wear it. Keep it cool with minimal accessories and chunky sandals.

    Shop Solid & Striped green linen maxi dress at The Outnet, £142

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  • Zara linen dress with cut-out detailing

    Zara linen dress with cut-out detailing

    Cut-out dresses are also having a moment this summer, so this linen number ticks both trend boxes nicely.

    Shop Zara linen dress with cut-out detailing, £29.99

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  • Asos Design linen corset blouson sleeve skater mini dress

    Asos Design linen corset blouson sleeve skater mini dress

    Flirty and fun, this mini in a punchy pink shade ticks all of the summer dress requirement boxes.

    Shop Asos Design linen corset blouson sleeve skater mini dress, £45

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Images: courtesy of brands.

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