I am still on the fence about this beautiful Realisation Par dress, the Alba. Here is why…
THE ALBA DRESS BY REALISATION PAR
With the Realisation Par flash sale ending today, I finally had a window to post a review on the Alba dress. I bought it last year in the Black Friday sales as a bit of a birthday/ Christmas present. And I am still on the fence about it. I’ve worn it for these photos and a video or two but I’ve yet to wear it in real life!
I brought it with me when I went home to visit my family to see what my Mum thought of it. She kindly alters my clothes for me if I need any alterations. So, I just wanted her opinion. She agreed it wasn’t quite right but couldn’t see what could be done by the way of alterations. Actually, her only suggestion was to cut it up and make it into a top and skirt. However, the whole attraction for me with this dress, apart from the print, was the length and style.
The Alba dress is a mid-calf length midi dress with a firmly fitted corset bodice in a milk-maid style with elasticized gathered detail across the back panel. It has a tie string at the chest which you can draw in to adjust, as well as adjustable spaghetti straps. There is an invisible zipper at the side and it isn’t lined. I ordered it in the Dahlia print which I love so so much! The print and colours are just beautiful. The Alba dress comes in six unique prints and there is a mini version of the same cut called the Inez.
WHY I’VE NOT REALLY BEEN WEARING THIS ONE
So what is the issue? I’m still not really sure if this was the right style or size for me. I have a smaller bust but still, have hip curves. Though, I am not really used to showing them off. Actually, I mostly avoid showing them if I can. Why? I guess I am not used to it or I feel like it points out that my bust isn’t in proportion. Now, I am not looking to change that at all but I guess it’s something I’ve been self-conscious about.
We all have moments where we feel body hangups, though I am sad to admit I let them get to me so often. Maybe this dress just makes me face them a little more than I am used to. And it could very well be all in my head, haha, as I tend to over-dramatize. It’s also not often that I find a dress that shows my scoliosis, which I feel this one does. Essentially, due to the curve in my spine, one side of my waist comes in more than the other. We all have our quirks I guess. I tend to avoid dresses with cutouts as that really shows the difference on each side of my waist, but I wasn’t expecting it’d show up with the Alba dress. Funnily enough, I don’t notice the same with the Devon dress, which has a similarly fitted bodice. For my review on the Devon dress, visit this post.
Maybe if I’d just gone up one more size, it would feel less snug around the middle. Though I went off of the measurements and did watch some reviews before I ordered. Unfortunately, I’ve either filled out a bit more around my middle or the stretch in the back panel of this dress doesn’t offer much give.
FABRIC, CUT AND SIZING
I love the silk crepe fabric, it feels beautiful. I dry clean these pieces only, as instructed on the care labels. None of my Realisation Par pieces have stretched or changed shape. But, I wouldn’t recommend hand washing. I give these silk dresses a light steam to take out the creases from postage and they are good to go. They don’t tend to hold onto creases when traveling or during wear. Plus, these dresses roll up small so I end up packing all of them on my travels! This dress isn’t lined but I don’t feel like it is sheer at all, it’s just right.
Without trying on the next size up, I am not really sure what size advice to give for this dress. This one is a size XS and it fits but I find it snug through the middle and slightly roomy at my bust, which is normal for me across the bust with Realisation Par dresses. For reference, I am usually an Australian size 6, US 0, or French 34. As I said, this one is similar to The Devon dress thanks to the fitted bodice, and I find that one a little tight on my waist, so perhaps I should have tried a size small. At the time I really think I thought the elastic panel at the back would stretch more.
SALE CODES AND DELIVERY
To save $$, I generally wait until the sale days and place an order for a couple of dresses at once. The postage costs are steep so the sale codes tend to knock a bit of the cost down and buying more than one saves in postage fees. The postage is via a courier and very quick thank goodness! Each dress arrives in about a week or less. Most of the time they also have free shipping if you spend over $300.00 so keep that in mind. Right now they are having a flash sale. Use the code EQUINOX for 25% off of everything.
WHY I KEPT THIS ONE
So, it might sound like I am not into this dress. On the contrary, I love it! The print is beautiful, I love the fabric and the style. I wish that there was more stretch in the back panel to create a bit more give across the middle section. In the end, I decided to keep this one because I saw it as a dress I want to wear in the cooler months. Though it is thin, which makes it great in summer, I love these autumnal tones. I’m planning to wear it with cardigans, jackets, knit tops over the top and with boots. So, all in all, I think it will be a layering piece for me. I’m thinking I’ll get most wear out of it when our weather finally cools down. It’s still basically summer here, we have had lots of heat waves.
Expect to see me share how I style this one in the coming months. I think it will really come into its own for me then. I’m excited to finally wear it out soon!
ALL OF MY REALISATION PAR COLLECTION
Missed a review? There are a ton of them. I will leave the links below. If you are interested, I did talk about this dress in a YouTube haul video late last year, so watch that one to see it on in movement.