The Ultimate Dress Code Guide for Any Occasion

Declining invites because you don’t know how to dress for the occasion is a thing of the past—you should keep a few staple outfits in your closet at all times. Whether the invitation lists a specific dress code or not, there are unspoken rules when dressing for certain occasions. Follow this ultimate dress code guide for any occasion to prepare for your upcoming summer events.

Formal Occasions

Formal occasions are the most challenging to dress for because many people say formal, but they really mean semi-formal. You can ask the event host for clarification or aim somewhere in the middle to be safe.


Although most wedding invitations don’t include a specific dress code, you should always strive to look your best. Consider a floor-length or midi solid-colored dress with heels and a clutch wallet. Wearing white puts you in competition with the bride, and wearing the wedding colors will make you look like a bridesmaid.

Cocktail Parties

Cocktail parties are typically fancy events, making them the perfect opportunity to break out your little black dress. Generally, cocktail parties call for cocktail dresses, which are usually around knee length and work to define your waistline.

Informal Occasions

Informal events are much easier to dress for, and you can usually use your own judgment to determine what to wear. Unless the invitation requests you wear a particular color or pattern, you should be in the clear to dress how you please.

Baby and Bridal Showers

When it comes to baby and bridal showers, a casual sundress or a skirt and blouse are good options. You’ll likely be in pictures at these events; therefore, it’s essential to look your best. Knowing how to pick the most fashionable dresses for your figure can help you decide the best styles for you specifically.

Barbeques and Birthday Parties

Barbeques and birthday parties are the most casual events of the season, and you can usually dress based on your personal preferences and the weather. A romper or denim shorts with a cute blouse are both excellent options for casual outings.

Sunday Brunches

Brunches are typically a casual event with friends and family, but where you’re going might help you determine what to wear. For example, jeans and a graphic tee might be suitable for one situation, but another might require a dress. Knowing a few tips for building the perfect brunch outfit will help you narrow down your decision.

Business Events

Business events generally require business casual or dressy casual attire. Business casual is the standard for conferences—you don’t need a tailored suit, but you should still wear professional slacks or a skirt with a dressy top and shoes. Dressy casual is ideal for job interviews or client meetings; consider wearing jumpsuits, dresses, blazers, and professional shoes rather than t-shirts and sandals.

This dress code guide for any occasion is your key to dressing for success, no matter the event or outing. When you have confidence in yourself and your outfit, you can enjoy your time that much more. Although comfort is essential, you can also benefit from stepping out of your comfort zone and exploring new styles.

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