Holiday Style | Lace Dresses 2 Ways

Happy Wednesday from Alaska, friends! We woke early, early this morning to view the Misty Fjord National Park from the ship, and now it’s on to Juneau. We booked a hiking excursion to Mendenhall Glacier, which they labeled as ‘strenuous,’ so we’ll see how that goes! Are you following the adventure on my Instagram?

Last night was Formal Night on the ship, and my go-to for fancier occasions is always a lace dress. Especially one that isn’t too delicate. There’s just something about lace that makes a dress instantly, well, dressier.

We did a little shopping on our British Isles trip, and one store seemed to be everywhere…Marks & Spencer. I was smitten just by the window displays, and couldn’t wait to have more time to explore this popular London brand.

And as luck would have it, they reached out for a collaboration! (Sidenote: Things never happen that easily in blogging!) But obviously the stars were aligned, because my initial impression was correct…this shop is a treasure trove of amazing, chic finds (especially for work wear)…and even better, at affordable prices!

With holidays around the corner, I selected two dresses perfect for the occasion, and both around $100! This first is a figure-hugging lace sheath dress that flatters all the right places.

Lace Sheath Dress | Patent Clutch | Nude Patent Heels | Similar Sunglasses | Similar Bracelet

It’s a gorgeous deep green and black combo, but the other three colorways are stunning, as well. The lace is thick and substantial with a little bit of give to form to your body, but not cling. It’s fully-lined from the chest down, with a pretty cap sleeve. (I wear a strapless bra to keep the straps from showing through the open lace.)

I love the longer length, but petite sizing is available if you prefer it shorter.

Fit Tip: UK sizing typically runs a size smaller than traditional US sizing, so I always size up one. I’m wearing a UK8 regular (long available, too!), which is the equivalent of a US4. I typically wear a 2 in US dresses.

Lace Sheath Dress | Patent Clutch | Similar Sunglasses | Similar Bracelet

This patent clutch is a steal for $25 (also comes with a chain for easier carrying), and the pumps are as comfortable as shoes that are five times the price!! Seriously, I have no idea how they’re only $32 and look and feel this good!

Lace Sheath Dress | Patent Clutch | Nude Patent Heels | Similar Sunglasses | Similar Bracelet

If you prefer something a little more demure, this lovely fit-and-flare is for you! The lace is a little more delicate, but not so much that it snags and pulls. Like the first dress, it’s fully-lined from the chest down, with an exposed shoulder and cap sleeve. (I’m wearing a stick-on bra for this one since the back is lower.)

The darts and pleats make the dress look expensive, and the cranberry shade is spot on! Find tons more colors here.

Fit Tip: I’m wearing a UK8, but would have preferred the smaller fit of a UK6. So unless you’re full-chested, I’d stick with your usual size (in US conversion).

Lace Fit-and-Flare Dress | Floral Clutch | Nude Heels | Similar Bracelet

These heels though!! Tall enough to be sassy for parties, but comfy enough for every day workwear. Several colors and patterns available, and they’re true to size.

Lace Fit-and-Flare Dress | Floral Clutch | Nude Heels | Similar Bracelet

Lace Fit-and-Flare Dress | Floral Clutch | Nude Heels | Similar Bracelet

So which dress is more your style….sassy or demure? Or maybe like me, and you’re a little of both!? Are you familiar with Marks & Spencer? I know I have some UK readers out there…spill the beans on this new-to-me shop!


*Photos by the darling Audrie Dollins. This post created in collaboration with Marks & Spencer, but all styles, opinions and brilliant holiday spirit are my own. Thanks for supporting Hi Sugarplum sponsors!*


Leave a Comment


  1. Lace really glams things up! I prefer the darker dress, but the bright red/pink one looks so good on you too! 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Posted 9.19.18 Reply
  2. Sandy wrote:

    W o W! Gorgeous! The low cut back on the pink one is stunning! Bravo, Cassie!
    Marks&Spencer! How refreshing to see their styles. You must visit their food hall next time!

    Posted 9.19.18 Reply
  3. These dresses are gorgeous. I love both of them on you, but the red one is a stunner!

    Posted 9.19.18 Reply
  4. Sevahn wrote:

    CASSIE YOU ARE SO ELEGANT IN LACE! I love lace dresses too. CONGRATULATIONS for being chosen by Marks & Spencer. I’ve been to London and adore that shop. These will be on my list for the upcoming holidays to purchase. You are a STAR and are shining brighter and brighter. xoxoxoxoxoxo

    Posted 9.19.18 Reply
  5. Gail Wilson wrote:

    Thank you for the tip on Marks & Sparks (as my Brit friend calls them)! I found their shop while vacationing in Bermuda a few years ago. If I had more suitcase room, most of the store would have come home with me!!

    Posted 9.19.18 Reply
  6. So great seeing you styling our great British institution. I just love M&S. Wasn’t it weird that I met someone on the Marriott lift who was on the cruise. Such a shame you went to the airport.

    Posted 9.19.18 Reply
  7. JazzyJiver wrote:

    Hi from the south coast of England. As always, Sugarplum, you look gorgeous. Marks & Spencer is great. It’s a running joke, but probably true, that all Brits buy their underwear at M&S. Their goods are well made, their sizing is true (UK, of course). Prices are very reasonable. For anyone coming over on business or holiday, there’s probably a store fairly near your hotel. (Some are “food only”, so check online. Their food is simply scrumptious so leave room for an M&S sandwich and a cake. Oh, now I’m drooling). Before you visit, spend an evening trawling through their website – coats, dresses, knitwear, lingerie, shoes, costume jewellery, soft furnishings, bedding etc. You won’t be disappointed. And No – I don’t and never have worked for M&S. I just love it. It’s like a dependable friend.
    Keep blogging, Sugarplum. Your posts are joyful and uplifting. Thank you.

    Posted 9.19.18 Reply
  8. Joanna wrote:

    They are both beautiful but I prefer the green & black lace. It’s absolutely gorgeous! And, I think the longer length is more elegant for evening wear.

    Posted 9.19.18 Reply
  9. Lauren wrote:

    Love marks and Spencer! Fell in love with them many years ago on a trip to the uk. Glad to see they have better Shipping options now.

    Posted 9.19.18 Reply
  10. Jane wrote:

    Love the dresses! I remember as a kid going to the UK (back in the early 70s) and we went to Marks and Spencers to get our underwear! Lasted for YEARS!!!!! The shop had (has?) the seal of the Queen. We figured if it was good enough for her, it was good enough for us!
    Enjoy the rest of your vacation!!!

    Posted 9.19.18 Reply
  11. Ange wrote:

    M&S is ingrained in our culture. My earliest childhood memory is in a Marks & Spencer. It’s the shop where you can get something for everyone in the family. It’s where you go for Xmas shopping, it’s where I buy my kids winter coats, it’s where I buy ALL OF my underwear! And yes, their shoes are so comfy. M&S pride themselves on quality, in fact that was part of their slogan years ago. Their history is worth a read up if you’re interested, it includes introducing the introducing the packaged prawn sandwich – their food department is the best!

    M&S and John Lewis (pretty identical to Nordstrom) is where we go for high street quality.

    Posted 9.20.18 Reply
  12. Margaret wrote:

    Living in England for over a year now, I can honestly say M&S is like Macy’s. The prices are reasonable and everyone recommends buying g your husband nderware here and dressing gowns. The quality is a bit higher in England and the prices reflect that. One thing England does well is lady like dressing. I the dresses are longer and much better made. In fact, I have bought several dresses while in England, but save my casual shopping for when I go ho,e to Texas. People dress up much more here than in Texas. Im 50 and dress like a younger person here. A boy on the train that I met a few weeks ago,was stunned that I had a son his age. I was wearing jeans, a leopard blouse and hotties, At my age, I’d be expected to wear trousers, dress pants, out more than jeans.

    Posted 9.20.18 Reply
  13. Mary Brannigan wrote:

    Those dresses are just beautiful! I love them both on you. I am very familiar with M&S. My husband is from England and we visit home every other year. I always carve out a a little time for shopping and M&S is a must. They have excellent quality sleepwear too!
    I’ve only just discovered your blog and I’ve really enjoyed your British Isles posts. We’ve been to several of the same lovely spots. 😊

    Posted 10.3.18 Reply