Clothing Advice for a Formal Business Event?

January 24, 2007

Formal Business EventI've been invited to a Chamber of Commerce Business of the Year Awards night and the dress is stated as formal. The thing is, I have no idea what to wear! My friend suggested that I just wear a black trouser suit with a nice top as that is more my style and I don't really feel comfortable wearing a dress.


I looked up photo's of the previous year's award nights and I have to admit not many of the people look very formal. Mostly they are just wearing trousers and a top or a skirt and a top. I wouldn't mind wearing a skirt, but I don't want to be underdressed. In saying that I also don't want to be overdressed. Please help. Oh, and what can I do with fine, flat hair that doesn't do as it's told. It won't hold a curl or anything like that. Help!

Haley from Albany, Western Australia


By Margie Minard (Guest Post)
January 25, 20070 found this helpful

You can't go wrong with a fairly plain, long black skirt and nice dressy blouse. It's fine for formal or less formal. If you are feeling festive, don a necklace and earrings. Most of all...have fun!!

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 174 Feedbacks
January 25, 20070 found this helpful

It is always better to be underdressed than over dressed. What's not clear is if someone wanted to upgrade the dress at this event, compared to last year.


Check with someone you know who is on the award committee to see.

If the CofC members are casual people for the most part, just dress as you would for business. After all, this is a busness activity, not hangin' out at the lake with your toes in the water. You'll be leaving impressions with business connections at this one.


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January 25, 20070 found this helpful

i agree with Oracle

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By Ellie. (Guest Post)
January 25, 20070 found this helpful

Hi, I'm from Aus too.(Melbourne) I NEVER wear dresses,(a long skirt now and then) but 99% pants. I go to some nice council functions, and I feel you would be perfectly fine in pants, black.


if you like, and a glam. top. A bit of glitter if you like! As for your hair, a good cut to suit your style, and that's about it. Above all, relax and enjoy!

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January 25, 20070 found this helpful

Dear Haley, I too am from Australia. I agree with the others, but the most important thing is that you are comfortable. People don't dress up as much these days. I would favor the black pants suit and a bright or glittery top.

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February 4, 20070 found this helpful

A a long black skirt or pilazzo pants with a beautifully cut jacket that can hide or disclose a rich (think velvet, silk, satin, or rhinestone, or beaded) top in a style that is just a bit glam (cami, sleeveless, low-backed, whatever tickles you, since you are not FORCED to remove the jacket) and the easiest hair style (trust me on this, I go to these things often, with my shoulder-length fine hair newly-washed and totally unmanageable) is to pull back any hair possible and pin on a curly matching circlet of synthetic hair...available in drugstores for less than three dollars. a couple of jewelled combs or an enamelled and bejewelled chopstick through the circlet and your own hair is chic, easy, and takes less time than it does to comb your own into any style imaginable. Cannot be told from your own if you choose one that matches well and pull your own hair through it, pinning in underneath here and there.

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