Outfit Ideas For A Garden Party

With the events of the last year in mind, it’s likely that a lot of us will be invited to more and more garden parties in the coming years. Whether it’s a laid-back barbecue or something more formal, it’s important to know how to dress for an outdoor event like a garden party. Today, we’re checking out ideas from the casual to the elaborate for all outdoor events you’re likely to face.

Prim and Proper

couple party

When you’re going to something formal, you want to look the part, even if it’s an outdoor event. You can go two directions here, either masculine or feminine. In either direction, you’ll find that tailored clothes with structured shapes will work best for you.

We’ll start with the feminine direction.

Here, you want the classics. You can go for a structured dress that fits close to your body, keeping it cool with darker colours and fine details like piping and a slimline belt around the waist. Equally, try something that’s both light and bright by pairing a fitted top with a colourful knee-length skirt. When you’re bringing out the bold patterns and bright colours, you can stray from the close-fitting tailoring and venture into more free-flowing fabrics. Silks blouses and maxi-length skirts are the way to stay formal whilst bringing an element of fun to your look.

These typically feminine looks are best suited to some traditional jewellery that emphasises the silhouette of the ensemble. Vintage jewellery is a good starting point, whether it’s inherited or bought because it brings a sense of story and life to your aesthetic. A pearl strand, for example, stays current (pearls are having a big revival) whilst harkening back to some Americana 1950s dream of a garden party.

Now for the more masculine side of female garden party attire.

Believe it or not, free-flowing fabric is also welcome in this category. Rather than a maxi skirt, palazzo trousers or culottes can bring some relaxed-fit energy to your otherwise formal style. If you’re less interested in that and want something more architectural and structured, a suit is a perfect solution. Women’s suits are easy to make as formal or casual as is required, simply through shoes and accessories. If you’re worried that a blazer and some formal trousers might be too ‘business’ for a party, pair it with some playful accessories and shoes that you wouldn’t wear to the office.

You can also make a suited look more party-ready through your choice of colour. On a sunny day, you can break out a white suit, or perhaps a powder blue or peachy pink number. Keep the colouring pale, on the pastel side of things, and you can ensure that you are a sight for sore eyes and not an eyesore.

But what about casual events?

Languid and Laid-back


If your garden party is more of a Hawaiian-shirt/barbecue/sunglasses event, then you shouldn’t feel obligated to break out the fascinator and silk gloves from the depths of your wardrobe. Instead, think about a comfortable style that will have you looking chic without looking like you stumbled into the wrong garden.

One easy way to combine glamour and comfort is through the miracle that is the bodysuit. It may require a little forethought when it comes to knowing when to go to the loo, but overall, the pros massively outweigh the cons with bodysuits and playsuits. Hot weather calls for a shorter playsuit-style one-piece. Go bright and bold with the colours and patterns, pair with some wedge shoes, sunglasses, and a cute summery hat and you’re in the money. Full-length bodysuits will see you through a cloudy-looking sky whilst still having a suitably summer-ready aesthetic. Bright colours and patterns remain the best option for something like this, keeping it playful and light-hearted.

Another option for the garden party without a dress code is a classic shorts and t-shirt combo. High-waisted denim shorts combined with a plain white tee could not be more casual and cool. Ray-Ban style sunglasses and a baseball cap or snapback raise the cool metre even higher, for an outfit that will tell everyone in the vicinity that you are the definition of ‘chill’. Try a t-shirt with slash designs – or simply cut into one you’re happy to ‘renovate’ – if you want to add more edge and be the alternative punk of your friend group.

We love seeing our friends, especially after a year of more isolated living, and a garden party is the best environment to show off some new pieces in your wardrobe while you catch up with those you love most. Enjoy partying!

*Collaborative post

1 comment

  1. I always dress smartly. I am going to an informal christening soon so this has been helpful