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Alexa Chung Masters the Art of the Modern Princess Dress

Or, how to pull off a Disney silhouette with It-girl insouciance.

Bring up princess dresses around a group of grown women and you're bound to get a whole range of responses. For those who grew up watching princess movies or visiting Disney theme parks, puffy sleeved dresses with full skirts are reminiscent of childhood fantasy in the best way possible. But for others, it's hard to appreciate garments that seem better suited to looking pretty than saving the day.

Regardless of where you fall on that spectrum, there's something for you in Alexa Chung's Loewe look from Tuesday night at the Portrait Gala in London. Wearing a strapless floor-length gown with puffy sleeves and a flowing skirt, Chung's dress had all the makings of a sugary sweet fairytale outfit, complete with high heels and glittery earrings. But the asymmetrical hemline, a slightly off-kilter miniature polka dot print and tufts of fabric hanging off the waist combined to make the dress feel more like a cool adult's dream than an 8-year-old's fantasy. And when you consider the fact that Chung is a fashion figure who's made a name for herself not just by looking good, but by being funny, smart and vocal to boot, that makes perfect sense. Prince Charming's got nothing on this.

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