How to dress for a garden party

Written by jules halliday Google
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How to dress for a garden party
The Queen hosts an annual garden party at Buckingham Palace. (WPA Pool/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images)

Unlike a barbecue, garden parties tend to be more sophisticated and formal. Knowing what to wear to a garden party can be confusing, particularly with the unpredictable weather in the UK. If you are hosting a garden party, eliminate the guesswork of your guests by including a dress code on the invitation. If you are trying to decide on what to wear, there are a few simple steps to help you look stylish.

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Things you need

  • Garden party invitation
  • Formal or informal clothing
  • Shoes suitable for grass and uneven surfaces
  • Light cardigan, jacket or pashmina
  • Umbrella

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  1. 1

    Read the invitation. Check if there is a dress code included. If it says formal, men should wear a suit and tie. Ladies will be expected to wear smart clothing similar to what you would choose to wear to a wedding reception or to the races. A tea dress is often a popular choice. If it says informal or smart/casual, choose a more relaxed look such as a maxi-dress or trousers and a smart top.

  2. 2

    Call your host if there is no dress code on the invitation. Ask what they would deem appropriate attire.

  3. 3

    Choose footwear suitable for outside. It is likely that you will be walking or standing on grass or uneven surfaces. Ladies should choose flat shoes or wedges. Avoid a stiletto or kitten heel.

  4. 4

    Consider the weather. It may be sunny during the day but temperatures will drop in the evening. Take a cardigan, light jacket or pashmina to avoid feeling cold.

  5. 5

    Remember that you are in the UK. Take an umbrella with you just in case there's a downpour.

Tips and warnings

  • Ensure your outfit is comfortable and you can move easily in it.

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