How to Look Great and Feel Fabulous - Styled by Sally

Casual Dinner Outfits: How to Look Great and Feel Fabulous

Casual dinner outfits: planning a great outfit

Before you go through your wardrobe, or plan a shopping trip to buy something new, think about:

  • The venue and the company;
  •  The time of year;
  • The clothes you love and feel confident wearing;
  • The “casual” code: e.g. what should you be aware of when the dress is “smart casual?”

You know what other diners are wearing if you’re having dinner at the local Thai place, but if the venue’s new to you, check out the ambiance and menu online. If the venue’s fancy, a smart casual dinner outfit may be more appropriate than a super-casual outfit of linen shorts, a crop top and sandals.

The company is important too. You can please yourself if it’s a casual date night dinner. But if your parents are organising a restaurant dinner to celebrate your brother’s engagement and meet the prospective in-laws, you may want to dress to impress in something more stylish. It can help to ask what others are wearing. 

Then there’s the weather. You need to be comfortable; you don’t want to freeze or swelter. In the cooler months, your casual dinner outfit might include a choice of outerwear: a smart trench or a blazer. Even at the height of summer, take along a glittery cardigan or a nice scarf in case the air conditioning turns glacial.

 Think about yourself too. What do you love to wear? If you live in pants and jeans, you could experiment with a skirt or a dress, or stick with what you know.

On the other hand, if you’ve been invited to a dinner party and the dress is “smart casual,” you may be wondering what smart casual actually means?

Smart casual dinner outfits: break the code

A smart casual dinner outfit doesn’t indicate formal wear. However, it’s not weekend-casual either. Think in terms of polished dressing and a classic style; you might include a designer piece in your outfit. You could include a designer bag paired with a nice pair of jeans, a silk shirt and jacket, for example. 

Other ideas:

  • Choose muted or neutral colours. If you’re wearing prints, choose a small print rather than a splashy, bold print one;
  • If you’re looking for a smart casual dinner outfit for summer, consider the venue and the company. A slip dress might be perfect for a romantic dinner, but choose a light, floaty midi length dress with a little more coverage if you’ll be dining with people you don’t know well.

Speaking of romance, what could you wear for a romantic dinner date?

Casual dinner date outfits for ladies when you’re dressing for a romantic night out

Romantic dressing is back and on trend. You could choose to go full-romantic, with a floaty midi dress or a puff sleeve blouse and soft trousers.  You can’t go wrong with classic black for a romantic dinner date.

Some ideas:

  • Pair a silk camisole with black jeans and a pretty evening bag.
  • Match a romantic midi dress with long floaty sleeves with strappy sandals. Choose simple jewelry: gold hoop earrings, or elegant pearls.
  • For a casual dinner outfit for winter, choose a floral blouse and pair it with fitted jeans or pants.

Summertime: choosing a casual dinner outfit for summer

Choosing a casual dinner outfit for summer couldn’t be easier; choose a dress, or go totally casual with a top and great jeans. 

Let’s look at some ideas.

  • Choose a floaty, lightweight summer dress at any length. Go mini or midi, your choice. Pair your pretty dress with flats or heels, depending on the venue, and what you want to do after dinner: movies or dancing?
  • Go super-feminine with a slip dress, or a fitted dress to show off your shape. 
  • A little black dress is always perfect. It’s summer, so go mini if you like. 
  • Think face and neckline. When you’re out to dinner, you’re seen across a table, so your upper half is important. Choose a top or dress with a pretty, flattering neckline. One-shoulder tops and dresses are popular and perfect for summer.

For your casual dinner date, dress to feel great

Casual dinner wear, even if it’s smart casual, means dressing for a relaxed, pleasant evening with great food and good company. If you’re determined to enjoy yourself you will, and feeling stylish and comfortable will help.

Everyone needs a choice of casual dinner outfits. At Styled by Sally, we’re determined to help you to look and feel your best. If you wish you had a unique personal style to give you confidence and a sense of excitement, we can help. Book now for a personal style consultation. We’ll help make choosing flattering outfits for any occasion a pleasure.

Category: Fashion Advice

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