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Girls just wanna have sun: 5 sundresses by Canadian brands ☀️

Canada is known for its cold weather but we are still remarkably adept at dressing for sun.

Juneuary has seen to it that our summer clothes remain firmly in our closets but that doesn't need to stop us from chasing the sun in the form of retail therapy. Before we know it, the temps will rise and we can step out into the summer dressed in our favourite little dresses, the uniform of the season.

The ideal sundress looks different to each person. Some people want lightweight fabric, monochrome, and perhaps more upper body coverage, while others are all about the cutouts and letting the sun's rays warm as much skin as possible.

Sundresses are a great expression of personal style because they're versatile and varied, running the gamut from loud and sexy to minimal and demure.

So in preparation for the inevitability of summer and in support of all preferences, we have rounded up some of the best places to buy sundresses from Canadian brands.

Hilary MacMillan

Size inclusive fashion and lifestyle brand Hilary MacMillan is a leader in Canada for all things. The designer first received acclaim for her colourful Matrix-esque trench coats (which are still on my wishlist) and then Victoria Beckham sported a jacket from the varsity collection with the words "Don't tell me to smile" emblazoned across the back.

This summer, Hilary MacMillan is a great port of call for summer dresses because there are lots of silhouettes to choose from that are also photographed on different body types which is a major asset when online shopping. Our pick is the Linen Maxi dress which is great for dressing up or down and wearing to work in the hotter weather. With pinstripes and a cheeky but sophisticated slit, it's a great piece for people who keep it more modest.


Balessa dresses are more like wearable art made from silk canvases (and to be honest the price tag reflects that). The brand, which has a retail store in Toronto, is known for its luxury silk and leather garments which are made-to-measure, hand-painted and one-of-a-kind. The silhouettes are flattering and timeless and look like they stepped off a catwalk in Milan or Barcelona.

Our pick is also one of the most affordable pieces but it's still an investment. The Adria Peacock Hand-Painted Caftan is a burst of abstract colour on white silk with a belt to bring it in at the waste for some shape definition. The 100% Crêpe de Chine Silk is lightweight, durable, and wrinkle resistant for multiple wears before it needs to be cleaned. Each piece will be custom made so each one is slightly different which makes this sundress unique and unlike anything anyone else will have.

Smash + Tess

It's not just rompers anymore. Smash + Tess have been diversifying their offerings for a while now with collaborations galore, some of which include sundresses. For instance, the Luisana Lopilato collaboration saw Metro Vancouver native Michael Bublé's wife sharing her love of Argentina with the Buenos Aires collection that celebrated colour and pattern and sold out incredibly fast.

But it's one of their most recent launches that I will be living in this summer. The Sightseer Maxi Dress in Chic Chenille is the perfect everyday dress. Heading to the store? Work? Gardening? This dress fits seamlessly into any situation and is so comfortable. But for those seeking a shorter more flirty dress, the Wildflower Mini achieves the exact same effect just with less material.

Eliza Faulkner

Based in Montreal but formerly of Vancouver Island, Eliza Faulkner's eponymous fashion label began with linen dresses handmade in her living room. The operation has since grown in the last 10 years and evolved into a full ready-to-wear brand with jackets, tops, bottoms, and accessories but all with the same signature whimsy that she has become known for.

Even still, Eliza Faulkner never left her roots behind and can still be counted on to produce a great linen sundress. The dresses are perfect for transitioning in and out of seasons because they're good layering pieces. The Ophelia dresses are base pieces for corsets or under-bust vests and the Tig dresses with their tie-up spaghetti straps look nice over top of shirts. But our pick for the perfect sundress with no additional accessories needed is the Periwinkle Linen Angelica dress. The romantic tiered skirt and ruffle sleeves are balanced by the sexy keyhole cutout in the front.

Oak + Fort

You cannot go wrong with Oak + Fort for basics. Their silhouettes are streamlined and clean and most designs come in multiple colours (cue the TikTok audio). Its price point is also super affordable so it's easy to build up a collection or supplement the holes in your wardrobe.

It's difficult to pick just one sundress since they have every style imaginable—mini, maxi, flowy, tight, sleeves, and spaghetti straps—so if you're looking for something neutral and understated check out their site.