The Real(isation) Deal

<a href= ""><u>The Kate - Rust Spot</a></u><br/>
I'm wearing size Medium<br/>
Sunglasses: Zara
The Kate - Rust Spot
I'm wearing size Medium
Sunglasses: Zara
realisation par, dress, shanghai night, the emile
The Emile - Shanghai Nights
I'm wearing size Small
Bag: Gucci

After lusting over Realisation Par dresses for years but not wanting to fork out on the exorbitant price tag, I decided that this was THE summer that I made the investment.

But, standard me I couldn't decide which one to get, so instead of making that difficult decision, I purchased not one but four...! You see, these dresses are like a luxury Pringle, once you pop, you really cant stop (oh yes I did just liken realisation par to pringles LOL). Once I had one, I immediately needed another. The cut, colour and fabric are a dream and make these dresses worthy of the cost.

However, there are some handy tips which I wish I'd known before I made the realisation plunge. It's a bit of a minefield considering they don't stock them in any stores so you can't try them on, you also have to ship from the US so you have currency conversion, shipping and taxes to navigate. And to top it off all they post on their Instagram are skinny models so you have no idea how they will look on a normal, carb-eating, gym-apologist. 

realisation par dress, dusty blue spot, realisation par dress, spotty wrap dress, silk wrap dress
The Alexandra - Dusty Blue Spot
I'm wearing size Small
Shoes: Mango
Sunglasses: Zara

So first things first, when ordering from the Realisation Par website, how much taxes are you likely to pay? Well, i've made three purchases and so far have only ever paid £3 in duties and taxes. If you are going to order from their website, I recommend waiting till their 20% off days. They usually have them every few months, there have been two so far this year, so I imagine there would definitely be another one soon. It basically means you get the shipping for free and a little bit more discount so it's definitely worth it.

I got three of mine from their website during the 20% off promotions, and one I bought off eBay. They probably all worked out roughly the same in terms of savings in the end. You can usually get a bit of a bargain from eBay and Depop but in most cases you don't usually save more than 20-30% off the full price cost. I think thats because most people like to buy them off eBay to avoid the potential tax and shipping fees which means that sellers can charge higher prices knowing that they're harder to get in the UK.

Now sizing, roughly the size guide is: XXS = 4-6, XS = 6-8, S = 8-10, M = 10-12, L = 12-14 and XL = 14-16. However, this is very much a guide and you need to consider the style you're purchasing. For example, the wrap dresses come up a little bigger but also because they are wrap dresses you can get away with a bigger size. To give you a better idea i've done a brief overview of each of the styles I own and how they fit:

<a href = ""><u>The Ozzie - Pansy</u></a><br/>I'm wearing Size Small</br> Shoes: Mango
The Ozzie - Pansy
I'm wearing Size Small
Shoes: Mango


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The Kate - Rusty Spot

This rusty spot print/colour is probably my favourite of all the prints they do. Its such an unusual reddish/orange/rust colour and goes really well with a suntan and I think really suits dark hair/features. I got this in a medium, mainly because it was the first of the dresses that I bought and at the time I wasn't sure what size I would be.

It is a little bit big, aka its not as tight on the chest as I think its suppose to be when you look at the model shots. However, I really like the way it fits. I've worn this dress to weddings and the fact it doesn't cling to the chest makes it a bit more comfortable to wear to smarter occasions.

This style and the Ozzie have been designed to fit tight at the chest and its really flattering but for me personally I like the fit of this one a little bit looser at the chest. My advice would be to get your normal size if you want it to be tight on the chest but go a size up if you'd like it a bit looser like the way mine fits me.

The Ozzie - Pansy

I really love this style, its perfect for summer as its short sleeved unlike the The Kate which is the same style apart from the sleeves. I bought this one off eBay and got a size small. I'd say get your normal size in this as it fits true to size, however, if you have a large chest you might want to size up as its quite tight on the bust. I love this print too, i've had so many compliments wearing it and it can be easily dresses up or down, its such an great dress to throw on in the summer and makes you feel amazing.

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The Emile - Shanghai Night

The Emile in Shanghai Nights is the ultimate Chinese style dress of dreams! The A-line fit is super flattering, its figure hugging and mini and the print is so beautiful. I've had loads of questions about how short it is and as it's a mini dress, by definition its pretty short. I'm 5'8 and it is quite short on me. However, I am a huge fan of the mini dress so it's not a problem for me, but for those who aren't as keen I would be cautions because it definitely is a mini dress.

On the sizing, I originally bought a medium, but then sold it and bought the small. There is quite a big difference between the two sizes; the medium I could wear a shirt, t-shirt or fine-knitted jumper under the dress. Whereas the small i can barely fit a bra. So depending how you want to wear it i'd take that into account. If you want this dress to be versatile then i'd go a size up so you can wear things underneath it. But if you want it tighter fitting then go for your normal size. I've only worn with bear legs and sandals so far but I can imagine it will be lovely in the winter too with fishnets or sheer tights.

The Alexandra - Dusty Blue Spot

Last but not least - the wrap dress. The Alexandra fit is the one style that I have that I definitely think comes up a little big. Most likely because of its wrap style and therefore excess material but i'd say definitely go for your normal size in this. If you're between sizes then opt for the smaller.They stock a few different colours of the Alexandra and they're all lovely, I really liked this blue as its a bit more unusual and very summery.

An issues with some wrap dresses is that the don't have enough material for the wrap and therefore you always end up accidentally flashing people, however, the Alexandra has been made really well and doesn't have that issue at all. I mean you would expect that for the price tag!


I'm already mentally shopping for my next Realisation pieces (obvs) here are a few i've been eyeing up, really into the 3/4 length dress atm:

The Valentine - Purple Haze

The Violette - Summer Loving Green

The Violette - Black and White Spot

The Alexandra - Italia Spot

Realisation Par Emile Dress
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  1. Lisa
    September 8, 2017 / 4:03 pm

    Love the blog and the post! I totally agree, their dresses are like expensive Pringles 😛

    I’m thinking about getting the Emilie and I’m not sure which size to go with – would you mind if you shared your measurements? I’m S-M in most brands but I have a feeling Realisation runs a bit smaller…

    • Francesca
      September 10, 2017 / 10:24 am

      Hi Lisa, sure! Any particular measurements you’d like? My Emile is a small, it is very tight and rather mini but I think that’s the way it’s suppose to be. I had a medium too and it was fine but just not fitted especially on the chest and under the arms so I exchanged for the small.

      • Lisa
        September 12, 2017 / 6:18 pm

        Thanks for the reply Francesca! I see, I have measurements 34-28-37 inches for bust-waist-hip (that should be roughly 86-72-94 in cm). Usually I’m fine with small/medium for regular sized brands but I find designer brands to run small so I go for medium, sometimes even large. Would you mind sharing your bust-waist-hip? Thanks!

        • francescasaffari
          September 25, 2017 / 11:08 pm

          Hey! Yes so my busy is 34 inch. Waist is 27-28?and hips 36-37. So basically the same as you! Yeah I usually take a small in brands depending which one sometimes medium! Usually an 8-10 depending as well. I have a small waist and regular size hips and bust I’d say! Hope that helps xx

          • Lisa
            October 15, 2017 / 4:28 pm

            That’s awesome – we’re size twins! I ended up doing the same thing you did. I got both sizes and just like you said, the small could barely allow a bra and the medium was quite roomy. I was planning to go for the layered look, but the medium was just too loose in the waist and hips and I felt like I was floating in it. The small could feasibly work with a really thin shirt or bodysuit, so I think I’ll be trying to sell the medium soon. Thanks for the replies, and keep up with the lovely posts!

            Oh btw, I own the Valentina in Purple Haze and Alexandra in Dusty Blue, and I’d say the sizing is similar between those, maybe with the Valentina fitting a teeny bit looser since having short sleeves means arm fitting isn’t an issue but not enough to go down a size. Just fyi 🙂

          • francescasaffari
            October 15, 2017 / 4:31 pm

            It’s difficult isn’t it! The medium is just too big but there is quite a lot between the sizes as the small is a lot smaller! Ah amazing i really want the purple haze so much, ether the short of the long version. Do you have the small in that one? xx

          • Lisa
            October 25, 2017 / 4:25 am

            I have the Valentina with short sleeves, it’s my first dress from them. I have it in medium and I find it’s a perfect, comfortable fit, not too tight and not too large, and I can always tighten it since it’s wrap. I also have the Alexandra in medium.
            Hope that helps – have fun with your new dress(es)!

          • Lisa
            November 3, 2017 / 1:49 am

            Hey, sorry to reply so late – I wrote a reply but somehow it must not have posted.
            Anywho, I have the short sleeve Purple Haze Valentina in medium, I really like how it fits since it’s a wrap you can always adjust the tie to make it fit tighter. I don’t think I can go down a size in that one. I also feel that way about my long sleeve Dusty Blue Alexandra, it’s a medium and I think that’s the right fit for me.
            Hope that helps!

  2. XRumerTest
    October 13, 2017 / 6:43 am

    Hello. And Bye.

  3. sarah
    November 9, 2017 / 4:19 pm

    Great post! When were their promotions? I want to invest but not miss a sale. 😉

    • francescasaffari
      November 9, 2017 / 4:20 pm

      Hi Sarah, there was one in September I believe and then at the start of year too. I imagine they’ll have one towards the end of the year – sign up to their emails so you get the notification or follow them on Instagram ?

  4. Annie
    December 19, 2017 / 5:01 am

    Hi Francesca!

    Great post! I was wondering if you could shed some light on what size I should get for the Alexandra. I’m 5′ 8″ and with a 34.5 bust and 29 waist. I’ve been reading reviews that the M can be too big but the S can be difficult if I would like more coverage. How tall are you; did you find the S too short? It looks like we are also similar in bust size, did you find yourself having a hard time keeping the girls in the dress?

    I’ve been dying to own these dresses but I don’t want to commit before I find the best size. Thanks!

    • francescasaffari
      December 19, 2017 / 8:17 am

      Hey Annie! Thank you!

      So I got a small and it fit me perfectly and is actually quite roomy, I’d say I’m 5.7.5 and I’m a 32.5 C/D cup and the girls are honestly fine haha. What size do you usually go for? I’ve also worn a medium in the Alexandra before as my friend has it in the rust colour and that was totally fine too. I just bought the lilac short sleeve wrap too in a small and it fits really well. I’d say go for your normal size xxx

      • Kat
        March 23, 2018 / 6:30 am

        Francesca, thank you for this article! I’ve visited and re-visited your blog for size reassurance.

        I’m 5’6″ 32D bust, 27 to 29 waist, 37 to 39 hip (fluctuating an inch or two, depending on if I’m eating a ton of carbs that particular week). I emailed Realisation Par Customer Service and they recommended a small. I snatched up the Alexandra Dusty Blue Spot on Poshmark in the small for $150 after seeing how flattering it looked on you. Last night, I ordered the Alexandra Navy Star and Red Star on a whim in the small because there was (and still is) a 24-hour 20% off sale going on.

        Today, I received the used Dusty Blue Spot. When I tried it on, I got a little nervous with how low cut and how high cut it is. I found a nice white bralette from Victoria’s Secret and I felt less “vulnerable”. Plus, safety pins are another option too. The girls at Victoria’s Secret said the dress looked great; however, I still felt a bit exposed. I would have strutted my stuff in this in college, but maybe years of having an HR enforced dress code conditioned me into modesty.

        So, I tried to change my order with Realisation Par to a medium and apparently, I can’t. I have to wait to do the proper exchange. Because you’ve tried the medium, did you notice there was more bust and/or leg coverage? Is it worth the work and additional money to exchange the other two? Or is the small as good as it gets in flattering my shape and I shouldn’t waste my time? Thank you!

        • francescasaffari
          March 23, 2018 / 1:23 pm

          Hey Kat! I know what you mean about the wrap dresses, have you tried with think polo neck under or a non padded bra? You can also double wrap the tie to make it tighter? I think for me the medium didn’t really offer more coverage to the chest because the more material actually made it looser and more exposed if that makes sense? it was also a lot loser in the arms which I didn’t really like. For me if I’m wearing it to work I put a jumper over or a polo neck under and wear with tights and flats. Or as you say adding a vest top or bralet underneath. I’ll wear it with nothing on holiday or in the summer if I go out etc I really think these dresses are so versatile and can be adapted for both seasons. If you get the other two and really don’t want them I’d actually recommend selling on eBay. You can usually get more for your money especially as you’ve saved 20% and now we’re heading into summer they’ll go in a flash! Let me know what you think when you get them xxx

          • Kat
            March 31, 2018 / 6:51 am

            Thank you for your thorough response!

            I just received both dresses in the mail. So, I noticed a difference in fit. The Dusty Blue Spot actually fit looser than the Navy and Red Star…but they’re all technically the same size Small. I’m considering selling the Navy and Red Star on eBay. That’s a great idea. It would be nice to collect the loss, especially since you can’t do full returns on items that were purchased with a coupon code.

            But…if I were to do an exchange, I think I might do the Navy Star (if only it could fit perfectly) and see if I can get the Kate Rust Spot instead of the Red Star because it really does look fabulous on you. And I’d do Mediums for both because my arms felt quite “stuck” in the Smalls. So, I think the looser arms would be better for my body type. Maybe a large on the Navy Star? I was also thinking a midi dress since these minis seem to be creeping up a bit too high, especially if I throw my arms up. I really wish I could try them all on and get a better idea.

            I’m totally open to any feedback you might have, especially since you’re practically an expert shopper for Realisation Par. Thanks again and many happy shopping blessings and general good karma coming your way!

          • francescasaffari
            March 31, 2018 / 11:13 am

            Hi Kat – ah that’s interesting about the star dresses. They are actually the only ones I don’t own. You’re right they’re technically the same style as the spot so should fit the same way but maybe they do come up smaller. I would definitely recommend eBay as you can usually get a good price for them just be careful as you have to buy fees in eBay so make sure you allow for that in the price so you’re making at least the same money back if not more 🙂

            My friend has the star dress and I think she actually has a large and she’s a 10/12 so I think maybe they do fit a bit smaller than the other styles. You could always look out for the rust spot on eBay they do have them every now and again. Or wait till the next 20% off. It’s such a lovely dress, I have a medium in that.

            Let me know what you decide!

  5. Mandy
    February 19, 2018 / 9:59 pm

    Hi there 🙂 I’m also looking into buying the Ozzie and the Alexandra and since the shipping/return cost is so high I was wondering if you can give me some sizing advice 🙂 I’m 5’4, and my measurement is 34-26-36. Do you think S in Ozzie and M in Alexandra sounds about right? Thanks ?

    • francescasaffari
      March 10, 2018 / 10:14 am

      Hi Mandy, i would say to go for small in both given your measurements! I’d also say wait for them to do a free shipping or a 15% off day, they’ll be one soon i’m sure as they usually do it around mid-season, then at least you can save a little 🙂 xx

    • Marta Vidal
      September 25, 2018 / 6:05 pm

      Hi Mandy,
      I have exactly the same measurements and height as you. Did you end up getting S for both the Alexandra and the Ozzie? I was wondering of you could let me know how they fitted you?
      I have the Alexandra, Valentina and Kate all in M and they fit OK, maybe a little loose, especially the Kate.
      I am now looking to get the Teale and the Kaia top and was thinking to try a size down but I am too scared that it will be small around the bust.

      Thanks so much!


      • francescasaffari
        September 25, 2018 / 5:09 pm

        Go for the small! I’m 34 bust as well and I have smalls in all my realisation par dresses and tops ?

        • Marta Vidal
          September 25, 2018 / 8:36 pm

          Thanks Francesca!! ?

  6. Tiffany
    March 12, 2018 / 2:10 pm

    Hi lovely, I am interested in the emilie Shanghai. I am a 32b, waist 26, hip 35-36. Do you think S will be loose on me? I don’t know whether I should get size XS or S. 🙂 Thanks xx

    • francescasaffari
      March 21, 2018 / 8:15 pm

      Ah good choice! I would definitely go for the XS based in your measurements. Do you usually take an 8 or 10? If an 8 then I’d go XS if you want it right fitting xx

  7. Cristina
    March 21, 2018 / 2:12 pm

    Hello Francesca!
    I’m going to buy the Emilie dress, but I’m a little bit concerned about the sizing. For reference I’m 5’3 (yes, I’m pretty short!) with a 32,6 bust (measured at the nipple level) and 26 waist (so I’m a 34B and I usually wear a EU 34). Do you think I should go for a XS or for an S? Keep in mind that I prefer I tight fit for that kind of dress, just as you do 🙂 but I’m afraid I won’t be able to breathe in a XS!
    Thank you so much!

    • francescasaffari
      March 21, 2018 / 4:27 pm

      I think you should go for an XS, as you are shorter it won’t be too mini and it sounds like you’re smaller than me. The S is an 8-10 and the XS is a 6-8 so I guess the XS would fit you but be a tighter fit xx

  8. Andrea
    April 30, 2018 / 3:03 am

    Hi! I Was wondering how tall you were? I’m 5’2″ and thinking of getting the kate but wanted to see how the length would be since i sually get petite sizing..

    • francescasaffari
      June 22, 2018 / 9:01 pm

      Hey, sorry this is delayed I’ve only just seen it! I’m 5 foot 7 xx

  9. Logan Clew-Bachrach
    September 25, 2018 / 12:50 am

    Hi! I know this article is old, so you may not see this, but I was wondering whether you’d recommend a size S or XS for me – I’m 5’6.5″, and measurements are roughly 34-26-36. Thanks!

    • francescasaffari
      September 25, 2018 / 5:10 pm

      Hey, those are pretty much the same measurements as me but I’m 5’8. Id probably say go for a small as the XS may be too tight around the chest. If you’re getting a wrap style you can probably get away with an XS

  10. Marta Vidal
    September 25, 2018 / 7:31 pm

    Hi Francesca,

    Lovely blog, and really helpful! I was wondering if you could give me any advise.

    I am 34-27-33, 5.5ft and 34C bra size.

    I am really confused if I should order a S or M for the Teale, Mary Jane and the Kaia top.

    I already have the Alexandra, Valentina and the Kate all in size M. I do find they are a bit loose, especially the Kate, but I am quite scared to order the S size and then find them too small around the bust area.

    What would be your advise seeing that our measurements are very similar (I think I have a slightly larger breast and smaller hips.)

    It is so complicated with the return policy and specially now that there is a 20% discount.

    Thank so soon much, I really appreciate this.


    • francescasaffari
      September 25, 2018 / 6:38 pm

      Hey, I’m actually not sure about the Kaia top as I haven’t tried it before but for the teale dress I’d say a s and i did try the Mary Jane on in the London pop up and small was fine for me but i think a bit too mini but I’m a lot taller than you so maybe small will be fine. I’m a 34D with similar measurements 27-28 hips and I usually take small in realisation par xx

      • Marta Vidal
        September 25, 2018 / 8:45 pm

        Hey Francesca,

        You are so kind, I really appreciate this!

        I will let you know how it goes, I am just a bit nervous that they will have too much cleavage as I need to use a bra for sure…


  11. Kaja
    October 10, 2018 / 8:55 pm

    Hi Francesca!
    I’m interested in the Emilie! Your post really helped me, but I’m still a bit unsure.
    I’m 5´2” (so quite short) and my measurements are 36- 27- 40 inches for bust–waist-hip. I don’t think my hips will be a problem since it’s an a-line dress. I know a S will fit my waste and hips, but I’m unsure if my breasts will. I don’t want the dress to be too loose around my waste. I want a tight but still comfortable fit. So my main concern is the bust. Which size would you recommend, S or M?

    • Pipa
      January 13, 2021 / 2:56 pm

      Im following this for the response, too. I have the same measurement too and dont know what size to buy, S or M

  12. Delilah Wheeler
    June 21, 2020 / 8:32 am

    I’m skinny and a ‘normal’ carb eater. We should not shame women’s bodies, no matter their weight. Everyone is guilty of this at one point and we should all just check in with ourselves and ask why we feel okay making such comments about how other girls look. Wishing you the best!

    • francescasaffari
      November 3, 2020 / 11:55 am

      Hi, thanks for you comment. I wasn’t shaming anyone’s body shape, my criticism was to Realisation Par for NOT having more body (and skin colour) diversity on their page which therefore makes it incredibly hard to know how they look on ALL body shapes. They have been criticised for this a lot and have recently taken action to ensure there is more diversity across their brand. Thanks.

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