LKisSed Off: The Dress Code


(who got it right?)

Recently, JK received an invitation to attend a reunion for his professional school that he went to 10 years ago.  Excited by the prospect of seeing his old classmates, he eagerly RSVP’ed (as any polite human being should always do) and planned his trip for this momentous occasion.  One teeeeensy problem: Gorgeous invitation, no dress code stated.

How dare they?!  I mean, you are going to show up to an event and have no idea what the attire is?  I think not.  And I guess we could all say, no big deal just call the organizer and ask what an attendee should sport.  But alas, that means a long distance phone call (well, depending on your plan or whatever) and the annoying process of having to waste time and effort only to have to rely on some receptionist’s interpretation of what the guests will be wearing!

Do us all a favor and NEVER send an invitation without the dress code.

What do they mean? That is the next question:
Casual?  Well, show up in whatever you want, but depending on the age of the crowd I would err on the side of non-denim attire – and certainly no rips.
Business Casual?  Definitely collar and pants, boys (no denim) and girls should be dressed in pants or skirt and shirt.  I would recommend heels not too high and no bare feet, girls.
Cocktail?  For guys that means a collar and blazer too, for girls a dress with elegant boots or heels, pants/skirt and cute shirt.  Heel height is definitely going to be higher and shoe type will be fancier at this type of event.
Black tie?  Well, that means fancier cocktail dresses or even gowns to the floor for the ladies and a suit for the guys.  Again (and I learned this the hard way after telling AS that he should wear a tux to a black tie wedding only to hear that he and the groom were the only ones so spiffed!), depends on the crowd, but a tux may or may not be acceptable for black tie.  In my experience, the tux should be busted out if the invitation says “black tie” and (1) you are in the wedding party (duh) (2) it’s a fancy-schmancy wedding or (3) it’s an awards ceremony.
White tie?  Not something you hear of that often these days, but it usually means formal with a capital “F.”  It means full tail-coats for men and gowns for the ladies.
Black tie optional?  I honestly don’t know.  Like, why are they giving you the option to dress up?!  Just tell me what to wear so that achems razor doesn’t become the explanation as to why my guy is the only one wearing a tux!

The last thing is what if the inevitable happens?  Well, if you are under-dressed, provided you are not trying to impress your future in-laws, allow me to alleviate your worries.  In my opinion, there is something understated and cool about the person who rocks a mellower outfit than the rest of the crowd.  Let’s call it: I-only-mildly-give-a-sh*t-chic.  But what about when the opposite happens: suddenly you are walking into a room in an emerald green puffy cocktail dress, blow out, short lace gloves, Leboutins and a shiny black clutch and it turns out to be a party full of jeans and leggings?  Well, as LKis Sr. would say (that is my momma, y’all):  Hold your head high and enjoy the party, because there is only one way to look at your ensemble- you got it right and everyone else is dressed wrong.

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