The millennial generation has been accused of all but killing dress codes, owing to their penchant for individuality, authenticity, and personalization. However, if you flick through business, fashion, or entertainment magazines or blogs, you will probably notice that dress codes continue to reign supreme, the only difference being that they are considerably less strict than in decades past.
Whether you are wondering what to wear at the office or you have an upcoming gala and you want to fit in while expressing your personal sense of style, the good news is that there is still a little method to the mad creativity of fashion design trends and you can definitely get this delicate balance right.
Offices Determine their Own Dress Code
Companies are building their brand through interior design and fashion, and that means that each company has its own dress code, sometimes formally stipulated and sometimes build almost naturally, as a matter of course and with reference to typical standards expected of the industry. Thus, if you work at a trendy architectural firm, a bit of formality will still be required, but you may see blazers and dress trousers or skirts taking over from boring suits. Slim fitting trousers and skirts add a touch of sexiness to the equation and they can be paired with blazers or jackets in a different hue (think bright red or light blue). Metallic belts, a pair of heels and a minimalist piece of jewelry such as a necklace will work well if you are a fashionista who rightly believes that you should dress as the person you want to be – every day, and even at the office.
A Night Out on the Town
Most elegant restaurants will expect you to sport a smart casual look at the very least, but if you are heading to a club or casino afterwards, you will probably notice that savvy fashionistas are wearing cocktail dresses or pants and blazers. Jazz up the traditional casino look by opting for a colorful blazer or a dress in a material that evades the ordinary. Thus, embroidery, silk, and a metallic accessory in your shoes, belt, or bag, will add a bit of shine that is fitting if you decide to go dancing afterwards. If jeans are your thing, know that you won’t get kicked out a casino for wearing them these days, but make sure they are dressy and save jeans with patches and tears for the daytime.
Black tie events stipulate just that: men should wear a tuxedo (or close to it) and women – a long dress. The good news for fashionable couples is that once again, there is greater freedom in the interpretation of this dress code. Men with sartorial flair are no longer opting for boring black, for instance; we are seeing suits in everything from bright red to pristine white on red carpet affairs these days, as well as very daring prints by brands such as Tom Ford and Louis Vuitton. Tuxedos are getting skinnier too, to show off men’s silhouettes. Women’s gala dresses are far from the ‘prom-type’ ensembles they used to be. Check out this year’s Met Gala for inspiration. Gigi Hadid wasn’t afraid to show off her pins, Kylie Jenner stunned in a gorgeous two-piece gown by Vera Wang, while Lily Collins flirted with transparencies for a serious yet flirtatious look.
Dress codes are still de rigueur in office as much as at gala events. The good news is that creativity reigns supreme, for men as well as women. Bold prints, transparencies, and even ruffles (see Ryan Reynolds) are blurring the lines between men’s and women’s fashion and for those who live for fashion, that can only be a good thing.