When you receive a party invitation that calls for a cocktail dress code, you might well be forgiven for being confused about what, exactly, you should wear. Do you have to wear a dress? And does it have to be a long dress or a short one? What is cocktail attire for women anyway? Don’t worry, we’re here to answer all the questions about picking an outfit for a cocktail dress code that you may have:
Whilst cocktail dresses generally fall to mid-length or above, you shouldn’t wear anything that rises too far above your knee. The cocktail dress code calls for a demure outfit, rather than something you might choose to wear on a girls night out. A good rule of thumb is to ask if you’d wear it in front of your boss: if the answer is no then it’s not the right dress for the occasion.
When you’re dressing for a cocktail party the details really matter and your oversized handbag, stuffed full of those day to day essentials, simply won’t cut the mustard. Instead switch it for a smaller and altogether more delicate clutch bag. Whether you opt for a sleek black patent leather clutch or a beaded and embellished elaborate version, when it comes to your bag, size matters.
What you wear underneath your cocktail dress is just as important as the dress you pick. Your underwear will help to create your silhouette, give you confidence, and will often help your cocktail dress to fit better too. Never underestimate the importance of good underwear, and consider the pieces you choose to wear wisely.
It’s a rule that bears repeating: if you want to flash a little flesh then you should choose a cocktail dress that highlights either your legs or your décolletage, but never both. If you want to be a little less predictable then high fronted backless gowns are also incredibly popular this season, and are a great way to showcase a little skin in an unexpected way.
Unless your blessed with the diary of a minor royal or a socialite then it’s likely that getting dressed up for a cocktail party will be a highlight in your social calendar. Embrace it and enjoy the ritual of doing your hair and make-up, and putting your outfit together. If you feel good then you’ll look great!
With modern dress codes being so fluid and informal, you’d be forgiven for thinking you can now wear your favourite denim almost anywhere. But whilst chic pants are suitable for a cocktail dress code, if you don’t want to wear a dress, jeans will never be OK. Save them for the daytime, and make the most of the opportunity to dress up instead!
Coco Chanel once recommended that once you’re dressed you should remove one item before you leave the house, and this salient advice particularly applies to the cocktail dress code. Instead of stacking high a pile of rings, necklaces and bracelets all at the same time, pick just one statement piece and let it shine.
We know you love your new maxi dress but there is such a thing as looking too formal: cocktail dress codes call for cocktail length dresses. If you do want to wear a longer dress then why not opt for a floor length kaftan instead? The more casual nature of the fabric and the loose fit means that it is the exception to the rule, enabling you to wear a longer length whilst still sticking to the relative informality of the dress code.
No one can or should dictate that you wear heels if you don’t want to, and there are a huge range of dressy flats available for comfort enthusiasts. But the one absolute footwear no no for a cocktail dress code is wearing sneakers. They’re too casual, too informal, and don’t look good paired with a cocktail dress.
One Size: The one size kaftan has an inner side seam with a circumference of 140 cm and comfortably fits Australian sizes 8 through to 18.
|Plus Size: The plus size kaftan has a circumference of 210 cm and will comfortably fit up to an Australian size 24.|
Short Kaftans: Both the one size and the plus size short kaftans are 82 cm in length from the shoulder to the base of the hem.
|Mid Length Kaftans: Both the one size and the plus size mid length kaftans are 105 cm in length from the shoulder to the base of the hem.|
|Long Kaftans: Both the one size and the plus size long kaftans are 125 cm in length from the shoulder to the base of the hem.|