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  1. #1

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    What to wear to a formal event (ball)? not black tie

    Hi there,

    I'm just wondering what kind of attire you are supposed to wear to a formal event. It is a ball but dress code is not black tie. Black tie would perhaps of made the choice easier. What does one wear instead? Are there any articles on fashionbeans that would apply? Couldnt see any.

    Suit colours/ ideas/ lookbooks/ links would be helpful! bit clueless. Ideally something slim fit.

    Thanks
    Last edited by mattg; 12-02-2014 at 10:13 PM.

  2. #2

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    It is an obvious question, but if the dress code isn't black tie, what does the invite say about dress code?

    If it lacks any advice you have to make a judgment about just how formal an event this is. Depending on your sense of what is appropriate, either a lounge suit or separate jacket/blazer and tie would seem decent calls for a relatively formal evening. In either case, you want a suit or jacket that fits well and flatters.

    I'd recommend taking a leaf out of black tie's evening contrast and make sure that it is either a dark blue or dark grey combined with a crisp white shirt. Black textured silk ties can look good; silver/grey ties also work well for evening events. Avoid ties with garish colours or overly large bold patterns. Bow ties are an option too.

    Shoes in black leather (brown is more daywear) and finish with a white linen handkerchief in your top pocket and you'll look pretty smart.

  3. #3
    Nat

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    Just because black tie isn't compulsory, doesn't mean it's not an option..... Any excuse to wear a dinner jacket!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat View Post
    Just because black tie isn't compulsory, doesn't mean it's not an option..... Any excuse to wear a dinner jacket!
    Agreed with this, but I would dress in between. You dont want to be over smart, but you do want to be impeccably dressed.

    I would likely wear either something like a velvet blazer or a one off blazer.
    These can be slightly dressed down but still keep the look of luxury.


  5. #5

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    I'm not overly keen on velvet I'm sorry to say. I planned on purchasing this: White Three Button Shirt | Vivienne Westwood and could wear some sort of blazer with that perhaps - any suggestions what to wear with that shirt? Or am i going in the wrong direction.

    I must admit, I am not used to dressing for formal events.
    Last edited by mattg; 13-02-2014 at 09:49 PM.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolf View Post
    It is an obvious question, but if the dress code isn't black tie, what does the invite say about dress code?

    If it lacks any advice you have to make a judgment about just how formal an event this is. Depending on your sense of what is appropriate, either a lounge suit or separate jacket/blazer and tie would seem decent calls for a relatively formal evening. In either case, you want a suit or jacket that fits well and flatters.

    I'd recommend taking a leaf out of black tie's evening contrast and make sure that it is either a dark blue or dark grey combined with a crisp white shirt. Black textured silk ties can look good; silver/grey ties also work well for evening events. Avoid ties with garish colours or overly large bold patterns. Bow ties are an option too.

    Shoes in black leather (brown is more daywear) and finish with a white linen handkerchief in your top pocket and you'll look pretty smart.
    Unfortunately that is all I have to go on, "formal". I don't know how to mix between black tie and looking like you are going for a job interview

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by mattg View Post
    Unfortunately that is all I have to go on, "formal". I don't know how to mix between black tie and looking like you are going for a job interview
    That's not very helpful.

    Hopefully the suggestions made will help. In general, avoiding heavy patterns (whether that is large patterns on a tie or pin stripes on your suit) will help ensure you don't look like a job interviewee.

    The shirt could work - what are you thinking of pairing it with, however? I'd suggest getting the jacket and trousers and tie sorted first. Also, note that the (wooden?) buttons add a degree of informality to the shirt so you'll want to compensate for that in other ways, if they are likely to be visible.

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