How to Dress for a Formal Dinner

If you do not know how to dress for a formal dinner, it can be a daunting prospect. Not everyone attends formal dinners every week and if one pops up unexpectedly, you want to know how to dress.

How to dress for a formal dinner as a man

I write that as a heading, because it seems so much simpler for a woman *ahem* sorry ladies, but there are a glorious array of formal dresses that you can choose from and you are far less likely to make a faux pas than a man in these matters…

It may seem easier at first thought about how to dress for a formal dinner for a man – tux, bow tie, good shoes – yes?

How to Dress for a Formal Dinner OK yes, you can wear those for a formal dinner, but you will stand out in such circles if you are not wearing the ‘correct shirt‘.

Decide first if you are going to wear a bow tie. I always wear a bow tie, but that is because I have a ‘thing’ for them!

A bow tie is decidedly formal and quite perfect for a formal dinner ensemble. You will need to wear a wing-collared shirt.

If it is a proper ‘black tie’ event, then I would say definitely wear a bow tie and wing collar. A plain white wing-collared shirt is absolutely fine to wear with your black suit and bow tie, but you need not spend much more on a really good shirt with a ribbed front and concealed buttons, then really look the part.

Sometimes, the finer details make all the difference when you are considering how to dress for a formal dinner party.

Things like a self-tie bow tie (see earlier post with instruction video here), a double cuff and decent cufflinks are what I would call the ‘finer details’, in addition to the shirt detailing.

These things can make you look more comfortable in your attire; as though you attend formal dinners every week.

Consider carefully how to dress for a formal dinner – blend in beautifully rather than stand out from the crowd!