Written by Nadia
Invited somewhere but just not sure on the dress code?
We have all faced the dilemma, you receive an invite to a certain occasion and you go in to panic mode, you have absolutely no clue what to wear. Did you know that 40% of women have turned down invitations or felt anxious about going because they weren’t sure what they were going to wear, or felt like they didn’t have the right outfit. There is a lot of thought that goes behind choosing an outfit and this can feel really stressful when you know you HAVE to buy a new outfit for something really specific and you just can’t find the right items, you don’t really know what you’re looking for or you just purely don’t have time.
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Dress Code: The Party
A party is seen by many as the height of the social calendars, but with this comes the added pressure to look nice. Don’t fret though, there really isn’t a right and wrong outfit for a party. The first thing to do when trying to decide an outfit is to determine what kind of party it is. No two parties are the same and each require a different dress code.
Formal Parties: quite often people like to throw formal parties as a chance for everyone to get dressed up and look glamourous. In this case, find out whether it is a black tie event, if so then a floor length gown may be appropriate, something simple but elegant is ideal. If it isn’t black tie then it may be that a cocktail dress is more appropriate. The key to picking a cocktail dress is to find a style that you are comfortable in and is right for your body shape and possibly a fabric with a bit of a stretch.
Casual Parties: Sometimes people have more casual parties, for example in the summer, maybe a BBQ of which a summer dress is more than satisfactory, either a maxi dress or a mini dress, it depends on what you are comfortable in. Alternatively there are some amazing jumpsuits in stores that would be perfect for the party season, to either dress up or dress down.
Dress Code: Date Night
A date night can be a tricky occasion to pick an outfit for, you do not want to be under dressed, but you also don’t want to be overdressed. Depending on the kind of date you are going on will depend on the kind of outfit that you want to wear. If you are going out for dinner, you will need to determine the kind of restaurant you are going for, is it somewhere that is fairly casual or is it a high end place with the possibility of nice drinks after.
A fail safe outfit is either jeans or nice trousers and a blouse with either strappy heels or heeled boots. If you are worried that this will be too casual, add in a blazer, possibly something brightly coloured and some statement earrings. Another way to dress up a slightly casual outfit is with makeup, wear a nice lipstick or a glittery smokey eye. The possibility for date night outfits are endless and at the end of the day, it really does depend on the variables.
Dress Code: Wedding Guest
Being a wedding guest can be an exciting time, especially if it is someone close to you, but choosing an outfit can feel like a mammoth task. As with most occasions, the outfit that you choose depends on the season, the venue and the overall theme of the wedding. Some people opt for a very traditional wedding, in a church with very formal attire, this means wearing something fairly conservative. A midi style dress is perfect in this situation, teamed with either simple strappy sandals or a classic court shoe. For this style of occasion, a hat may also be worn, this could either be matched to your dress or to our shoes depending on what you prefer.
Many people opt for something that is less traditional and more bohemian style, these are beautiful weddings, often set in the summer. The dress code for these tends to differ from traditional weddings, a long floaty floral maxi dress would be ideal, either paired with flat sandals or heels of your choice.
Dress Code: Workwear
Office attire can often be seen as boring and plain, many people opt for the classic dark pant suit or skirt and blazer, but office wear can be so much more adventurous than this, but still remain corporate. It is so easy to fall in to the trap of picking really business like clothes that don’t make you feel fashionable.
If you’re office has a fairly strict dress code, then keep with the more traditional office wear, but maybe spice it up with a patterned dress, or a colourful pair of shoes. Just because you’re wearing colour doesn’t mean you look any less professional.
If you have more of a relaxed dress code then incorporate some trend pieces that are on the market, either in the high street or higher end depending on your budget. An example of this is culotte trousers that have recently made a resurgence in the past few years. These can be bought in a variety of fabrics, patterns and colours that can be tailored or loose fitting.
Dress Code: Day to Night
The thought of having to attend an occasion after work is sometimes nerve-wracking, you’re wondering if your makeup can last the duration or if you will appear to be underdressed. The key when creating a day to night outfit is to think of how you can work it in to two different looks. An example of this is wearing a simple shift style dress. The dress during the day can be worn with tights and flat shoes or sandals (depending on the weather), but on the night can be transformed in to something more formal, removing the tights, adding jewellery and a tiny bit more makeup if you wish. Alongside this, it could be that you change your shoes in to a pair of heels but this is not always necessary to go from day tonight. An outfit can be worn in a variety of ways and just by adding or removing simple accessorises can change the look completely, taking it from casual day time to classy night time in a few simple steps.
Dress Code: Holiday
Booking that long awaited holiday is the most exciting time, the thing that you look forward to the most in the year, yet for some reason, many people dread holiday shopping. There are so many options to choose from, but what is great about holiday clothes is that they very rarely go out of fashion.
For the Summer, floaty and light fabrics are the ideal go to when it comes to looking for holiday clothes. There is nothing worse than being abroad and being overly hot, with uncomfortable fabric that isn’t the slightest bit breathable. Maxi dresses are also a firm holiday favourite, perfect for feeling cool, but still adding that hint of class and sophistication.
A winter holiday means lots of layers, enough layers that you can still have a good time without being absolutely freezing. This year especially, puffer jackets have been a big hit, they are everywhere and they also ideal for that cold winter holiday. They come in a variety of colours, with something slightly more eccentric being a metallic one or sticking to the minimal black. For many it is important to make sure you look good even though you are cosy, but sacrificing warmth and comfort for style is not something you should be doing.
Dress Code: Job Interview
The first judgement an interviewer will make is going to be based on how you look. A general rule is to think “three pieces” – a shirt, jacket and well tailored pants. That said, what you wear depends on what industry you are going into.
For larger corporate companies, nothing can beat a well-tailored suit. The pant or skirt should be comfortably fitted to your body. Then let your outfit breath with a looser top, tucked in or flowing out. Your jacket should fall straight from the shoulders to convey professionalism – no oversize, high fashion silhouettes. If you are going into creative or design industries, the key is to communicate who you are through your style. Add interest by adding an accent colour or texture with one of your 3 items. But remember: if stuck, an all-black outfit can always save the day. For the tech start-up, casual attire is acceptable or even preferred. That said, it is better to overdress than underdress for an interview. Put on black cropped pants with a cool T or a loose button up. Finish the look with a leather bag or purse.