Choosing a Great Fitting Semi-Formal Dress

Woman wearing a semi-formal dress

Did you recently get an invitation to an event that specified a dress code of semi-formal?  Before you panic wondering what semi-formal actually means, we’re here to break down the difference between semi-formal and formal and give you some insight into choosing a great fitting dress for the event.

So, what is the difference between semi-formal and formal?  So glad you asked.  The formal dress code is one that generally sticks to the black tie formalities.  While semi-formal is a bit more relaxed than the formal dress code.  In other words, if you get an invitation to an event that states ‘formal’ as the dress code it’s safe to dress according to a black-tie event dress.  This generally means gowns and very…formal dresses are to be worn.  When you receive an invitation to a semi-formal event, you don’t need to have the super formal gowns but can take things down a notch to more of cocktail/party attire.  The dresses are typically a bit shorter and less… formal.  So essentially semi-formal is a bit more of a relaxed version of formal. Here are a few tips to consider when choosing a great fitting semi-formal dress.

Consider Your Body Shape 
Having a firm understanding of your personal body shape is key when looking for a dress for any event.  You want to choose something figure flattering so you don’t go back to see pictures that you don’t like.  All in all, the most figure flattering characteristics to consider in a dress is something that emphasizes your waistline and has a length that hits just above the knee.  Those two things are universally flattering for all body types.

Enlist in a Great Tailor 
It’s rare that you’ll find a dress that fits like a glove, as it should right off the rack.  The answer?  Enlist in an expert like a great tailor.  If the length is off a tad or something little like that a tailor can make an easy adjustment to help you achieve a dress that fits you impeccably.  If you’re not sure which size to go with (for those that are between sizes) try on multiple sizes when purchasing a dress.  Go with the one that fits the best and requires the least amount of alterations.  While a great tailor can make incredible adjustments to almost any dress, it’s best to go with the option that’s the closest.  The general rule of thumb is to find a dress that fits the hardest to fit areas.  On women, that’s often the hip/butt area which is generally the largest.  Remember that it’s easier to take in than let out.

With these style tips, you’re sure to be able to find a dress for any upcoming semi-formal event you may be needing to attend.  Remember to keep your body shape in mind, have a realistic idea of your shape, have an idea as to what look you’re trying to achieve for the event, and don’t forget to have fun!  Style and getting dressed for special events doesn’t have to be stressful.  Have fun and work your shape!

Leave a Reply