Cap sleeves: Yay or Nay?

I’m koo-koo for cap sleeves!

Cap sleeves usually make me think of temple-ready gowns…specifically those temple-ready gowns that look like someone took a strapless dress, yanked it upward, and popped some sleeves on as an afterthought. Not all of them look like that, but some certainly do. Why you’d try to convert immodest into modest when there are so many fabu things you can do with modest is beyond me.

Of course, this Kittychen gown is sure as Schenectady not temple-ready–too much booby and not enough sleeve. Also, it’s not all white. Is it super freakin’ awesome? Yes. I think I’d buy something similar in black or brown or blue, and then make The Beard take me dancing. In this one instance, I’m giving cap sleeves the thumbs up…they look so dang fab with the empire waist.

I don’t know why I’ve been on such an LDS kick all morning–not to be confused with an LSD kick–but it could have something to do with dress shopping. It’s 30 degrees outside and stores are still full of teeny tiny mini dresses with short sleeves! Huh?! I can sometimes find really cute non-formal dresses that won’t leave me freezing my assets off in stores that have opted to make modesty a priority, i.e. stores that market their clothes to religious folks.

Anyhoo, enough of my rambling. I love this dress. Do you?

19 Responses to “Cap sleeves: Yay or Nay?”

  1. Lynn says:

    I like the sleeves. They are very girly. Don’t get me started on finding modest dresses. I have found a few nice things at a local consignment store that are more in the “business suit” catagory, but at least it is modest. Sometimes I feel like I am dressed for a board meeting instead of church. If you think it is bad for us, try shopping for an 8 yo girl. Why would they make a dress suitable for clubbing for a child !?

  2. Sarah says:

    I adore the dres… on her. I just have a feeling that those puffy little cap sleeves would make me look like a very feminine quarterback.

  3. Wendy says:

    Yes I love that dress and it would look fabulous in just about any color. I almost bought a dress with cap sleeves, but as Sarah also humorously commented, they made me look like a linebacker. So they are not for us broad-shouldered gals, however lovely they make look on a model or a hanger.

  4. Melissa says:

    I love this dress! It manages to capture a fairy-tale-princess vibe without being too cutesy or stiff-looking. I’m not sure I have the chest to carry it off myself, but I think it’s gorgeous.

  5. Twistie says:

    I absolutely adore this dress! What’s more, since nature saw fit not to bother giving me shoulders or a bust, this is just the sort of line that makes the most of me. Now, where can I get it in steel blue?

    It’s so nice to see something that’s reasonably modest without looking dowdy or like it’s trying to be an ‘immodest’ dress turned into a modest one.

    So, so pretty.

  6. I’m not LDS, so I don’t know the rules, but what’s immodest about sleeveless? (I don’t mean spaghetti straps with the bra showing; I mean this dress without the cap sleeve?)

    Also — it seems to me that the heaving bosoms would be more immodest than the upper arms.

  7. Never teh Bride says:

    class-factotum: In my mind, there’s nothing particularly immodest about this dress, but the LDS folks have pretty strict rules about what constitutes temple-ready (or just plain modest) wedding wear. Sleeves can’t be sheer and necklines have to be higher, for example. Even if an LDS bride isn’t wearing her gown for the “sealing,” it’s still expected to be fairly modest, where modesty equals very conservative necklines and covered shoulders. And there can be no heaving bosoms!

  8. Toddson says:

    I love the dress … on the model. I usually have a problem with little poufy sleeves on adult women. If those sleeves weren’t gathered at the bottom, I think they might be more attractive.

  9. spilltojill says:

    i9 am all for cap sleeves…but not this dress per se!

  10. perletwo says:

    Love it. I don’t have the figure for it, but I love it. Just “Pride and Prejudice”-y enough for a not-overformal wedding. I do wish I could see the hemline, though.

  11. I love it. Very vintage, very romantic.

  12. Tizzy says:

    I love it. I love cap sleeves in general. I’m always baffled by brides in strapless dresses who have these traditional church weddings with bare shoulders and heaving bosoms. You wouldn’t wear a tube top to church… why a strapless dress?

    Can you tell that I’m bitter from looking for a non-strapless dress for my non-church wedding?

  13. Ruth says:

    I looked on the kittychen website but didn’t see this dress anywhere. Where did you find it?

  14. Melissa says:

    Tell me about it, Tizzy. My friend L had a church wedding and felt that strapless dresses were not appropriate in church. She had a surprisingly hard time explaining to the bridal store people that she really, truly did not want to wear a strapless dress down the aisle. It narrowed her options considerably.

    So many gowns today seem almost interchangeable — strapless with a big poofy skirt. A dress like that can look gorgeous on the right woman, admittedly, but I’m always happy when I see a dress like this one that breaks the mold.

  15. Never teh Bride says:

    Ruth: I actually captured the image from the flash interface on the first page of the site. A quick glance through the bridal section tells me that it’s not there for some reason. I don’t know if that means the dress is no longer available, or what, but if you’re interested, I’d say send off an e-mail to

  16. Pencils says:

    I love that dress. It’s gorgeous. Cap sleeves can be difficult to wear, though. They’re not great on women with less than skinny arms, or big shoulders, unless they’re cut juuuust right.

    And, yeah, it’s difficult to find something other than a strapless gown. I knew I didn’t want strapless, so it made shopping easier, as it ruled out some 75% of the gowns out there! I think, though, with the popularity of these sort of pretty, Edwardian kind of dresses that are being produced by Reem Acra, Jenny Packham, and Claire Pettibone, you’ll see more and more in the future. The only problem is that they can look a bit like a nightgown, and, again, they’re not the most flattering thing on giant blond Viking women like me. I needed a stronger look.

  17. Melissa says:

    Ruth — I loved the dress so much that I googled “Kittychen Brier Rose” and it came up with one hit — from the 2008 Kittychen preview. I think it’s part of their next collection.

  18. Never teh Bride says:

    Thanks for doing the detective work I should have done, Melissa!

  19. srah says:

    I like it, but not necessarily as a wedding dress.