Muumuus, float dresses, and patio dresses are all A-line dresses that reach somewhere around the knee. The top of the ‘A’ starts at the shoulders or bust, and the garment gets wider and wider from there down. Housedresses don’t usually have such an ‘A’ shape, but they are still loose and “housy.”
For the purposes of this page, caftans are similar to muumuus and housedresses, but they usually reach the calf—or ankles if you‘re short enough. They tend to be more colorful than housedresses, and they seem to have long sleeves more often than muumuus or housedresses.
Housecoats are “housy” loose shirt dresses that snap or button up. I remember my mom wearing one while doing house chores—it must have been invented to function like an apron only with more coverage. Also known as dusters.
A smock is a protective shirt worn over another shirt in order to keep the shirt underneath clean. I’ve gathered from the terms used on the sites that a smock has a front opening and a smock apron goes on over the head. Smock aprons are shorter than kitchen aprons. I imagine both are used when doing crafts or housework. Smocks are also known as housekeeping smocks, painter smocks, short sleeve smocks, painting smocks, artist smocks, paint smocks, and art smocks.
A casual dress is something that one would wear outside the house. The stores sell them in all shapes, sizes, and colors. ‘Jumpers’ are American jumpers (not British ones). They are over-the-head dresses that need a shirt to be worn underneath.
Culottes look like skirts at first glance, but really they are loosy-goosy shorts. Most of them reach at least to the knee.
Dickeys, also spelled ‘dickies,’ are removable shirt inserts to simulate the front and collar of a shirt. Many styles can be found in these stores including mock turtlenecks, turtlenecks, and collared dickeys.
Pettipants are like bloomers without elastic around the leg openings. They tend to reach somewhere above the knee. Long-legged panties are even shorter yet still have loose leg openings.
Culotte slips and pant liners are both two-legged undergarments. Culotte slips are shorter than pant liners (well of course—culottes are shorter than pants) and tend to have fuller-cut legs. Two very nice inventions. Either could also be worn under a skirt to keep warm or cool, to prevent chaffing, or for modesty.