Decoding The Dress Code For The Party Season

Updated: Dec 4, 2019


Party season is upon us! And with the slew of invites comes the pressure of knowing what to wear and what not to wear. It seems that wherever you go these days there's a dreaded dress code. Cocktail attire, black tie optional, black tie creative, festive... The list seems endless, and for many, it can cause a state of panic when the invite arrives and they have no idea what they're supposed to wear. Of course, you could always stick to the good old rule, 'better to be over-dressed than under-dressed', but it always makes for an uncomfortable time when you throw on the little black dress and find the rest of the room in jeans. So to help you and your clients, I've decoded the dress codes so you'll know exactly how to style them for every occasion.


1. Black tie - Probably the easiest dress code to figure out! For men, it's time for the tuxedo and for women, it's a long gown or a formal cocktail dress. Definitely a time to dress to the nines.


2. Black tie optional - Probably one of the more confusing dress codes for many people. For men, they have the choice, tuxedo or dark suit and a tie. For women, you can wear anything from a long dress to a cocktail number. You'll not be expected to look like you're going to the Oscars, but you will need to wear formal attire.


3. Creative black tie - Not one of the more common dress codes, but still important to understand. The clue is in the word 'creative'. You'll still need to be formal but you can add a bit of personality or quirkiness to your outfit. For men, it could be a tuxedo with a hot pink bow tie, and for women, it's about adding a fun and creative twist to something formal.


4. Cocktail - For men, it's a dark suit with a tie, and for women, it's a party-ready short dress. The perfect occasion to bring out that LBD.


5. Festive - This dress code is very similar to cocktail attire, but you'll want to add a festive twist, either by wearing a festive color or something that glitters.


To help you navigate the dress code this party season, I've created an infographic that you can download and use as a guide. Simply save the image below and then all that's left to do is enjoy the party and toast the festive season!



Happy Styling and Happy Holidays!

Louisa 💕

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