Whenever there is a special occasion for us to show up, we immediately start thinking about what to wear. So, what to wear to a Cocktail Party? It figures that if you are going to this kind of party that you’ll want to wear a cocktail dress, but while that sounds simple, consider it in the context of the event details. Even though the invitation says the same ‘cocktail attire’ dress code, your best friend’s wedding will require very different attire than a corporate event or fashion party.
If you attending an actual event that requires a cocktail dress code, your attire will alter depending on the type of event as well as place and time the party is held. Make sure you’re following the right formal etiquette, for example, an event taking place at a hotel will call for a dressier outfit than something held at a public restaurant, and definitely more so than a party held at someone’s home. For this reason, every detail should be thoroughly studied for the choice of your attire, makeup or hairstyle which will complete your final look.
What to Wear to a Cocktail Party
Determine the Formality
While in theory, all cocktail parties are relatively formal functions, there is a great deal of variation between different events. It is crucial you understand what type of event you’ll be attending. Are you going to be having cocktails with a bunch of girls celebrating a hen do? Or are you just going to be socializing with the women from work at a more formal affair?
In term of time the party is held, a cocktail party would usually be planned prior to lunch or dinner, but nowadays many hotels and bars will host cocktail hours between 4pm and 6pm as a way of luring customers in, where they may stay for many hours. So, in general, this party is suitable for the evening, which is more formal than casual clothes but less formal than evening wear.
However, if for some case you’re are invited to an event in the afternoon, pay attention that while evening occasions suggest a more formal fête, those that scheduled earlier in the afternoon or day require simpler and more natural manner.
Not to mention, never underestimate sense of fashion and personality of the host or hostess who invites you. If your host is known to be old-fashioned or traditional, dress more conservatively than you would if the host has a more relaxed interpretation of cocktail attire.
Keep in mind that cocktail party means ‘semi-formal’ or ‘dressy casual’ in most glamour look, so do not overdressed. Keep it classy and elegant. If you want to be sure to make a good first impression, your best bet is to channel sophisticated. If you’re afraid of being overdressed, understand that casual is not the opposite of looking overdressed. A minimalist slip dress is an elegant option that won’t run the risk of looking overly fancy or informal. Think anything ranging from a shift dress with dressy shoes, to skinny cigarette trousers worn with a silk camisole and tailored blazer.
Obviously, in term of season when the party is held, you need to choose an ensemble that is appropriate for the time of year and style it accordingly. Pick items in fabrics, colors, and prints that suit the season. A colorful floral number, light fabrics, pink or soft pastel shades, as well as strappy heeled sandals might be just right for a springtime soirée, while for summer you can go bold in something bright, alluring cut, or fully printed.
In fall season, the event will likely call for closed-toed shoes, along with attire in rich earthy tones and warm neutrals made of luxe textures like satin or velvet. As for a winter party, opt for finely warm staples made of wool or silk in deep jewel tones, along with an evening coat and winter accessories such as tights, gloves, or a pair of beautiful little ankle boots.
Dress It Up
Conventionally, cocktail dress code etiquette states that a dress’s length should sit at mid-thigh to knee length, but nowadays, your archetypal cocktail frock can go for something a little shorter – with a little flirt, if you wish. As for a safe bet, appropriate lengths could fall somewhere between mid-thigh and mid-calf. Don’t go with a floor-skimming gown or dangerously short minis.
Even though cocktail attire says ‘semi-formal’ on its dress code, dress it up. Get the most breathtaking combo, even if you need to spend more time on finding the right one. Forget about any casual fabrics such as jersey or denim. Save your casual wardrobe staples including flip-flop, casual pants, t-shirts, backpacks, etc. Opt for pieces that come with exciting embellishments, asymmetrical accents or a bold print, but keep it elegant and classy. At a cocktail party you have the perfect excuse to go glam, so don’t shy away from the wow factor.
Plus Size Cocktail Dress Ideas from debshops
Additionally, although most women seem to be familiar that a little black dress is an ideal variant for every occasion, do not strictly follow this instinct since you will still have a lot of choices to wear different colors – with various prints or patterns. Whether it’s metallic, sequin, bright color, striking details, or even donning ‘pop of color’, play with those other element that is best informed by the time of year.
If you still want to go with the little black one, opt for pieces that will instantly make people wonder ‘who is that girl?’ Whether you opt for a dress with interesting neckline or with chic detailing and cut, you can truly never go wrong with a glamorous classy look.
Mix and Match Attire
Cocktail parties aren’t just for cocktail dresses. Even sometimes the problem with shopping for a cocktail frock is the terrible sense that you’ll wear it once or twice, and then, after a couple of years, it’ll go to the back of your wardrobe and you’ll never look at it again. If this really bothers you, you might want to opt for a mix-and-match outfit. From flattering tops with details, colors, and prints to various styles of skirts and tailored trousers, experiment your mix-and-match fashion skill, even to the cocktail frocks layered with top underneath.
Not only it creates sweet and lovely attire, skirts are an amazing alternative and totally versatile to mix-and-match. Pair it up with a feminine blouse or create a look that resembles a dress with a matching set. As for those who are heading a refined androgynous look, menswear inspired outfits including tailored trousers, tuxedo suits or a jumpsuit can definitely rock these looks. Complete your look with natural makeup and dainty accessories to add a dose of femininity to your menswear-inspired style.
Now you know what to wear to a cocktail party dress, please go to next page for more ideas and tips on how to style to cocktail party, including styles of accessories, handbags, and makeup.