The Casual Style: Dress Code 101

 Welcome to today’s fashion crash course on casual dress codes.

“ What do I wear?” is a question we ask ourselves almost everyday and more desperately when attending an event .The answer to this question, however,  is guided by another all important question –  “what is the dress code?” . Consequently, a failure to appropriately answer this question could result in overdressing or an even  worse  fate –  being under dressed.

Perhaps you’ve heard dress codes like “casual smart” or “business formal” and you’ve wondered what they mean and look like or where you could dress like that to. Or perhaps you wonder what dress code your everyday style fits into. Well then, read on to find out.

The two main dress codes are the casual and formal dressing. Every other one is  either a sub-class or a derivative .In today’s piece ,we will be focusing on the casual dress codes.

Play casual

This refers to your house clothes. They are the comfortable clothes you wear to do house chores or yard work. It goes without saying that you should never wear these set of clothes out except perhaps to buy something in the neighborhood hood or to a close neighbor’s house.

Examples are; an old t-shirt, shorts, joggers, oversized shirts ,tank tops, nightwear or pajamas ,gym sneakers, bedroom or fuzzy slippers, rubber slippers and crocs


casual style

These are simple and comfortable outfits for informal  events such as friendly visits, hang outs, picnics and get togethers.

Example : polo shirts, cargo and khaki trousers, plain tees or tees with  fun and inoffensive captions, casual button down blouse or shirt, sandals, sneakers, palm or fashionable slippers, bucket hats, sundresses, hoodies ,beanies, sweaters, bead bracelets, simple everyday jewellery, tote bags etc.

Smart casual dress code

casual style

It is also called “casual smart” or “dressy casual” and is typically a cross between  casual and formal dress codes. You could wear this for laid back yet formal events such as ted talks ,a garden party, a lunch date  or work hangouts such as group dinners. Pull out your jean , suede or leather jacket and pair with a nice dress shirt and trousers . Shirt dresses for ladies also falls into this category. Others include; dark jeans, khakis, blazers ,coats, polo shirt or turtle neck  tucked in jeans or a skirt, nice dress , sneakers, heels, boots and classy jewelry.

Business casual dress code

This is the typical workplace or office dress code at organizations where the dress code isn’t specific or strict . It is very similar to dressy casual style but it tips more towards the formal side of the scale. It aims to confer that professional look necessary for the work place without compromising on comfort.

Example : nice jeans or khaki with polo or patterned  open collared shirt, company branded shirt, loafers, dressy sneakers ,dress shoes with or without socks, knitted tie .

For the ladies; outfits like a dressy blouse ,statement jewelery, heels, nice  black or coloured flats ,sweater, skirt, simple ankara gown, ankara shirt, palazzo trousers with a casual top will do nicely.

Well ,dear readers that’s it for the casual style. Styling is everything when it comes to properly interpreting a dress code. For instance, simply layering a blazer over a casual outfit turns it into a dressy casual one. Therefore, you can take any of these style inspirations into consideration for your next informal event or consider adding  any of the items listed to your casual outfit collection.

Alright then, till our next adventure when we  define formal. Stay gorgeous.

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