The Do’s And Don’ts Of A Black Tie Dress Code

Black-tie events are social functions held by private companies, organizations, elite families, and other luxurious groups. They can be dinner parties, award ceremonies, or other special occasions. This fancy party requires people to dress up formally and look their best. If you’re planning to hold or attend a black-tie event anytime soon, it would be helpful to know the unspoken rules of dressing up. 

Dress codes exist for a reason and primarily serve as a guide for attendees so they won’t feel confused or insecure about what to wear for the party. Being invited to a black-tie party might feel a bit daunting in the beginning, but you should take advantage of this opportunity to look your best and rock the best dress or tuxedo.  

Whether you’re a man or woman, you should know what to wear to a black tie event. Hence consider the following dos and don’ts when sporting a black-tie dress code. 

  1. Do Full Length  

There is a dress code for black tie events. If you’re a woman waiting for the right time and opportunity to rock a full-length gown, a black-tie event is the best time to do so. Do full-length if you want to look chic but effortless. However, if you’re not ready to wear a floor-length evening gown, a great alternative is to go for a dress that falls below the knees.  

Black tie dress codes can range from semi-formal to formal western for events after 6 PM. Choose an evening dress with a flattering cut for your body to make you feel luxurious and elegant. Slip in high heels and get ready to turn heads during the party.   

  1. Do Wear The Right Colors  

This next tip applies to both genders. A black-tie party has themes that require you to wear the right color for the event. Contrary to what people expect, such events are not limited to only wearing black and dark colors. While these colors are highly recommended and expected, the truth is you can experiment with wearing other shades to formal events too.  

However, there are unspoken rules for specific occasions. For instance, female guests should avoid wearing white evening gowns or any color close to them at a black-tie wedding party. The bride should be the only one wearing a white dress for this special night. Also, you should be mindful of what colors to avoid, such as the bridal entourage’s gowns, since you won’t want to give an impression of being part of the bride’s team. 

Wearing black dresses at modern weddings has been fashionable and acceptable in recent years. While this may not be a common practice in other cultures, you would have to check with the wedding coordinator or the events planner first. Elegant, classy black gowns and fancy little black dresses are perfectly appropriate options. If you want to wear a red dress to a wedding, albeit not draw attention away from the bride and is on-theme, it is acceptable.  

As for men, black will always be a safe color for formal events. You can combine it with other shades to look more stylish and dapper. For instance, midnight blue or deep navy make handsome choices for tuxedos. Wear a sharp suit if you wish to look more powerful and corporate but still be on theme.  

  1. Don’t Be Afraid To Look Too Fancy  

A black-tie party is a fancy event, which means you have a reason to look fancy and be a little extra with your outfit. On such occasions, no outfit might look and feel too formal. The same tip applies to men as well. For men, you can also be as extremely formal as you want. From ties and dress shirts to blazers and dress shoes, you can go all out and wear the most striking combination of suit and tie.  

  1. Don’t Forget To Accessorize  

Don’t belittle the power of accessories. Both men and women shouldn’t forget this vital part of the entire outfit. Wearing the right shoes and jewelry can make or break the whole outfit. After all, formality could be reflected in the shoes.  

In choosing the right shoes for men, you can stick to footwear like loafers, derbies, or monk straps but try not to wear shoes that come with laces. As for women, it’s common to go for flashy and sparkly heels. However, embellished and glittery ballet flats are acceptable. Don’t forget to add the right jewelry pieces to complete your black-tie look. 


A black-tie event requires you to look your best and translate your personality into your outfit. But, if you are unsure about what and what not to wear for this formal event, you can refer to the dos and don’ts mentioned above. By following these tips, you’ll surely be turning heads during the party.