A Guide to Women’s Dress Codes for All Occasions

Casual/Informal Dress Code

A casual/informal dress code is essentially an open invitation to dress in what you feel most comfortable. Whether you like to wear jeans and a t-shirt or a skirt, shirt and sneakers, you’ll be okay with this style code. There’s no need to wear heels or overdo the accessories, just wear something that is relaxed and your style. Short of wearing your gym gear or pyjamas, you really can’t go wrong.

Dressy Casual Dress Code

Dressy casual, also known as casual chic, is an invitation to wear that cute weekend look that you love. Slightly more dressed-up than your most casual look, this form of attire is asking you to show off your style. Choose cute separates, such as a skirt and short-sleeve, button-up shirt, and add all kinds of accessories, from jewellery and scarves to quirky sandals and hats. Still stuck? Nice jeans paired with heels are also a winning look.

Smart Casual Dress Code

Smart casual is a dress code that can often confuse. It sits a notch above dressy casual and a notch below business casual. While jeans are no longer appropriate for women, there are still a lot of options for what to wear. A simple way to pick an outfit is to dress as if you’re heading to a lovely brunch with friends or an ultra-funky workplace. A knee-length skirt, top and cute jacket in a fashionable fabric and colour is always a great option. Just choose between heels or dressy flats to complete your look.

Business Casual Dress Code

Business casual is a standard dress code for offices. While the term can vary depending on your workplace, it generally refers to office-appropriate clothes that are done-up without being overly formal. Aim to look polished with a few more relaxed, fashion-forward touches. A great option for dressing business casual is to wear cropped black trousers, a fun blouse and some light jewellery.

Country Club Casual Dress Code

Country club casual dressing is precisely what you think it is. Men in white shirts, polo tops and tan chinos and women in simple blouses, fitted trousers, tennis skirts and beautiful dresses. Light colours are always preferable for this preppy look, as are lightweight fabrics, such as cotton and linen. To complete your look, add minimal accessories and comfortable shoes that are appropriate for outdoor wear.

Beach Formal / Dressy Resort Dress Code

Planning an outfit for a beach formal or dressy resort dress code is all about wearing the right outfit for the location. Generally reserved for summer weddings and outdoor social events, this dress code calls for a mixture of comfort and style. Your safest option is a flowing maxi dress in a fashionable print or a dressy full-length jumpsuit. Keep jewellery minimal and hair and makeup polished to elevate the look. Pair with wedges for grassy occasions and flats for anything on the beach.

Cocktail Attire Dress Code

Cocktail attire for women calls for at or above-the-knee dress and high heels. A standard dress code for parties, your cocktail dress should appear appropriate yet fun at the same time. When deciding what to wear, choose a playful yet polished party dress that isn’t too revealing. Interesting colours, embellishments and cut-outs are all great, as long as they stay sophisticated. If you’re still feeling unsure, a little black dress will work as well.

Festive Dress Code

Festive is a dress code most often seen on invitations throughout the holiday period. Events that specify this dress code call for cocktail attire with a holiday-appropriate twist. Choose a cocktail dress with added bang for a night filled with fun and dancing. Think sequins, jewels, tartan and festive colours, like red and green. Just remember to keep it chic. No reindeer jumpers, please!

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