If you struggle to figure out what to wear to social events, let us help you decode the dress code

What You Wear Matters

Before we talk about what to wear, let’s talk about why what you wear to social events matters.

First, you have more fun when you like the way you look. These major social events are meant to be joyous occasions in life, and you’re a lot more likely to enjoy them when you love what you’re wearing.

Also, dressing well is a form of respect. It’s a great way to acknowledge to the host you know how important the event is, and that it, and they, matter to you, too.

The Most Common Dress Codes, Explained

White Tie- The most formal of all. Long gowns only.

Black Tie-Slightly less formal than white tie. Long dresses are most appropriate.

Cocktail Attire-Less formal than Black Tie, but still glam. Shorter dresses are appropriate, but you can have a little more fun with color, pattern, length and embellishment.

Semi Formal- Less formal than Cocktail, but more festive than office wear. A dress or jumpsuit with drama is a good choice.

Dressy Casual- Here, office wear could be appropriate, like a wrap or sheath dress, or a pantsuit, or dressy separates.

Casual-Don’t make the mistake of going too casual! No denim, flip-flops, or sneakers. Casual means cotton sundresses, dress pants and a pretty top, or a more casual jumpsuit. Think business casual, with a little flair!

Come as you are-This one means the hosts just want you there, so wear what you’d like, keeping in mind that dressing well is always a good idea.

What to Wear When There Is No Dress Code

It can be tricky to figure out what to wear when the dress code isn’t clear, but use these tips to help guide your choices

First, the invitation. A heavy, engraved invitation signals a much more formal event than an invitation printed at home, or emailed.

Second, look at the wording for clues. “The Honour of Your Presence” is much more formal than “Please Join Us”, and the event is likely to be more formal as well.

Next, look at the event details. The later in the day a party or reception is, the more formal it’s likely to be, so look to the time of the event for hints. Also, the venue is a great clue. A party at a country club is likely to be a dressier affair than a party in someone’s back yard.

If after looking for clues, you still can’t figure out what to wear, simply ask the host what’s appropriate!

I hope this episode makes it a little easier to love the way you look at your next social event.

Listen to the episode for more, and to hear our answers to your questions about dress codes!

Additional Links & Resources from the Episode:

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Check out the quirky dress code trend!

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