Best Dress Types For a Formal Event

Have you been invited to a fancy wedding, a gala, or a fancy outdoor event and don’t know what to wear? Look, we’ve all been there. Dressing up for formal events may seem daunting at first but in reality, it is very exciting and fun to do, especially in the era of lockdowns and staying at home.

Best Dress Types For a Formal Event

As we have observed, the main confusion comes from the tricky names of specific event attires. In this article, we would like to decipher the top main formal event attire styles and give you some examples of what and when to wear them.

White tie

White tie events are the time and place to go over the top and live out the dream of wearing the fancy ball gown like a cinderella dream dress. This is probably your only chance, other than prom, to wear a ball gown or silhouette hugging long sparkling dress. The event is probably the fancy, over-the-top wedding or once-in-a-lifetime gala, so don’t be shy, wear statement accessories, shoes that will attract everyone’s attention.

Black tie

A black-tie event is a little bit dimmed down white tie event. This kind of affair requires unexaggerated gowns, maybe a little bit less of a puffy style and more of a silhouette long dress. Don’t be afraid to show off your curves,  incorporate statement pieces like high heels and an eye-catching clutch or jewelry. And don’t forget that the main rule of a black-tie event is to stick to a floor-length, long dress.

Black tie optional

A black-tie optional event indicates that organizers want to create an atmosphere of comfort but still within the formal boundaries. You should always stick to the rules of formal attire, wear elegant long or mid-length dress and you’re good to go.

Business formal

A business formal event can be a time when you want to make a good impression on someone, may it be a coworker, a boss, or even an employee. Remember that you want to come across as stylish, but very professional. To do so, keep in mind to wear tailored pieces in professional, neutral colors. You can always wear a mid-length tailored dress but don’t miss out on a power suit and heels combination too.

Dressy casual, semi-formal

Semi-formal or as sometimes referred to as dressy casual is an event where you can explore, and dress for fun but to remember that the occasion is still important and special for hosts. This kind of attire allows you to wear short dresses with fun prints and maybe even sandals. To be sure, you should always research the venue and assemble your outfit according to that.

Outdoor formal

An outdoor formal attire requirement indicates that the event is still very formal, it’s just hosted outsides. In this case, even though you have the freedom to choose more fun, floral, or graphic prints, you should always wear something long. The main thing to avoid is short or even in some cases mid-length dresses. Instead, choose long, flowy wrap dresses. And depending on the surface opt for wedges or block heels.


To sum up, all that has been stated above, different formal events need specific attire. Whether it’s a fancy wedding, baptism, or chic event, now you know all the confusing terms of formal attire. But the main advice that we would like to give is to research a venue, former event or even reach out to the host to specify the details about the attire requirement. Don’t be shy, take risks, be bold, and most importantly enjoy your time.

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