Dressing for special occasions calls for different outfits at different times. Depending on where you’re going, your outfit may be more suited for casual or formal attire. Understanding when you should dress up or down can be confusing, especially when the event could call for either. In this article, we go over how to dress for any occasion, from casual to formal attire, and when to make these distinctions.
Casual Attire Basics
Wear more comfortable clothing if you are invited to a party or gathering that calls for casual attire. Before taking selfies, remember that being comfortable does not mean you can wear your pajamas. Make sure you still look sharp in whatever casual outfit you choose to wear.
Some casual attire basics include a pair of black jeans and a buttoned shirt, a sundress, blue jeans, a neutral tee-shirt, or one with a lovely pattern such as paisley fabric designs. Casual means comfortable but thoughtful. For shoes, consider womens loafers.
Formal Attire Basics
For upscale events, be sure you’ve thought through what you’ll wear, and be mindful of any attire specifics outlined in the invitation.
Although you may not have a celebrity stylist, you can get some insight from the invitation on what to wear.
Some parties have themes that ask guests to dress in specific colors, costumes, etc. For example, if you are attending a wedding as a bridesmaid, you’ll want to wear the dress that the bride-to-be decided on.
If the event doesn’t specify anything specific, go for formal attire such as black dress pants and a blouse, a pencil skirt, a matching top, or even a long gown (if you are going to a gala or a very upscale event).
For footwear, delicate ballet flats or heels work best. Try to choose footwear that will complement your physique and match your outfits, such as closed-toe boots or multi-strapped silver or black sandals. Neutral shades in footwear look best regardless of the colors in your outfit.
Knowing When To Dress Formal Or Casual
If you are still deciding whether to dress in formal or casual attire, reach out to someone you know will attend the event for outfit input. You can also use your best judgment based on the event itself.
For example, if you’re going to a baby shower, it’s a good guess that casual, thoughtful attire is perfect. If you are attending a barbeque, the same idea applies. If you’re invited to an art showcase, this is likely the time to dress up. If you need tips on fashionable courtroom attire, ask Gwyneth Paltrow! Use your best judgment and reach out to anyone with some ideas before settling on an outfit.
Sometimes, you can overlap the clothing you wear so that they work for casual and formal events. Black pants and a white buttoned shirt can work for formal and informal attire. However, depending on the occasion, others may expect that you dress even fancier than this, such as at a wedding.
Get Outfit Inspiration And Plan Your Next Look
It can be unclear when you should dress formally or not, especially when the purpose of one casual event appears to be just as significant as a formal one, i.e., (a wedding vs. a baby shower).
Consider the suggestions above to get started as you look at outfits for the event you have coming up. When all else fails, you can always browse online to get ideas. See what others are dressing like for the types of events that you’ll be attending.