Black Tie Affair

December is officially upon us. Yep, we’re right in the thick of holiday parties, get-togethers and gift exchanges. Today’s Festive Friday look is for one of the fanciest of holiday events, the black tie party.

plus size rent the runway badgley mischka ootd crystal coons

plus size rent the runway badgley mischka ootd crystal coons

plus size rent the runway badgley mischka ootd crystal coons

dress via rent the runway by Badgley Mishka

A lot of times, holiday dress codes can be complicated. What exactly IS black tie, anyway?
Lemmie break it down for you:

White Tie
White tie is the most formal of all dress codes. You’ll want the fanciest floor length ball gown you can find, long opera gloves and a classy clutch. A white tie party is perfect setting for a couture gown.

Black Tie
A floor length dress is usually implied here, but you could get away with a very formal cocktail dress as well. It’s not as formal as the white tie, so the long gloves are optional here.

Black Tie Optional/ Cocktail/ Creative Black Tie
I like to lump these together because they mean the same thing. Your best choices will be a fun, knee length dress (or just about the knee), but you can usually get away with your go-to little black dress. You can even get away with dressy separates (like a chiffon maxi and a sequin crop top for example).

Festive
This is the funnest of all dress codes, because while you’re encouraged to keep it dressy, you’re also encouraged to play with color or be inspired by the tone of the season. Try: a silver sequin pencil skirt and a black cashmere sweater for a house party on New Year’s Eve.

Dressy Casual
If your day-to-day look is jeans and a sweater, here’s your chance to elevate it. Dressy casual asks that you elevate your everyday look. Swap out those jeans for some leather-like denim and fun peplum top in a rich color. Don’t forget your statement necklace!

I hope this helps you navigate your invitations! If you have any specific questions on what to wear, leave them in the comments below, on instagram or Facebook!

If you’ve got a formal event coming up and don’t want to put down the big bucks for a fancy frock, check out my fave online rental company, Rent the Runway. They’re doing a free backup size with your rental to make sure you get the right fit. Rent the Runway: Add a free backup size for the best fit.

*A special thanks to Chris Frailey for these fabulous photos! 

  • vanessa

    So glad you blogged about this, I have a black tie wedding in February and your blog was the first blog I thought to search for ideas! I’m considering the Kiyonna screen siren lace gown, the Kiyonna vintage dream cocktail dress, or Rent the Runway.

  • Thank you so much, Vanessa! I’m SO glad the post helped you out and I am honored that you thought of me to help you with your event! let me know if you end up using RTR and what you pick!

  • This is so gorgeous !