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47 Gorgeous Dinner Gown Styles for Awards & Red Carpet Events

Faith picked up her phone and began to type the message to her friend. She didn’t need the ticket to the event anymore. There was no point. She couldn’t find what to wear even after scattering her wardrobe. And to worsen the case, she didn’t know the best dinner gown styles to show to her seamstress who offered to make something new for her.

Like Faith, are you tired of rummaging your wardrobe for the perfect outfit to wear to that dinner party? Are you tired of saving pictures from Instagram and Pinterest without deciding on the exact one to go for?

It’s understandable. Women often get confused about what to wear. Even as we have a myriad of style inspo on the Internet, we still almost never have an easy pick.


lady wearing an evening dress for an event

What’s worse is that many other women will attend that dinner occasion. You can’t even afford to look your worst. You wanna get compliments, a few stares, and maybe turn heads as you walk.

And if that’s your goal, relax—we got you covered.

We understand how overwhelming it can be when you have many options to pick from. We also understand your goal to look dashing at that occasion.

That’s why we curated the best styles of dinner gowns that when you don, you become an epitome of gracefulness, class, and beauty.

Sit back and consume this piece. 

And as you do so, don’t forget to save the images you like so you can examine them with your fashion stylist.

Let’s get started.

What is a Dinner Dress?

3 ladies wearing dinner dresses

To the ever-evolving fashionista, a dinner dress is a weapon brandished during formal dinner events to exude class and make a fashion statement.

Initially, these dinner gown styles were peculiar to the ladies in the Victorian era. Women of that era wore these dresses to dinners and parties at home. 

They also wore it to the royal court as it was a norm then. These gowns were elaborate with details such as high necklines, long sleeves, full skirt ball gowns, etc.

But today, these classy dinner gown styles have evolved to feature different styles, lengths, and silhouettes. And the actual name is evening gowns

These evening dresses refer to dresses worn to black-tie and white-tie social events such as wedding receptions, formal dinners, movie premieres, balls, award nights, and other red carpet events.

So if you have any of those events coming up, you aren’t wrong being on this page. 

Let’s proceed to see the dinner gown styles we promised you.

Best Fabrics for Dinner Gowns

lady posing in an evening dress

The beauty of your evening dress depends on two things: your style and fabric. 

We’ll come to the former soon enough. But for now, let’s see the fabrics you should keep in mind when shopping for your next evening gown.

  • Crepe
  • Georgette
  • Velvet
  • Sequin
  • Georgette
  • Chiffon
  • Lace
  • Scuba
  • Organza
  • Silk, etc. 

These fabrics are perfect for any effect you want to give your evening dress. 

For instance, if you want something glittery, then you have to go for any of the best sequin gown styles. Or better still, pick something that shines like silk or velvet.

And if you want a smooth fabric that drapes, gathers, flows, and is flexible for any manipulation, the above materials will give you what you need. You can always mix them to ensure your favorite style of dinner gown has different textures. Check out these 2023 ball gown styles for some inspiration.

Classy Dinner Gowns Styles for the Chic Guest

rich lady posing in a dinner dress in front of a luxury car

You don’t have to wait until you’re invited to the Met Gala, Grammys, Headies, Oscar, BET awards, etc., before you put in the effort to pick the best evening dress.

Choose from any of these dinner gown styles and go command attention at that wedding, formal dinner, movie premiere, or award show in your locality.

1. Short Dinner Dress

lady wearing short gold sequin dress

These dinner gown styles are daring. If you wanna flaunt your shape while showing off your fine legs, make your short dinner gown tight-fitting.

But if you want some drama, add a flare to it. It’ll help to add more details to your lower body while directing eyes to your legs.

It all depends on your body type, though. For example, for pear and hourglass shapes, that bodycon dinner dress would suit you. But if you’ve got a rectangular body, by all means, add a flare.

2. Long Dresses

lady posing in a long blue evening dress

When we talk about evening gowns, the long dinner gown style is what we mean. 

These ones come with the drama of the typical maxi dress. It could be ankle-length or even tea-length.

lady wearing red flowing evening gown

You can go for a fitted cut or add some flare to it. 

You can even make yours into a ball gown if you’re slender. And if you’d like to show us your thighs while rocking this style, add a slit to it.

lady adjusting her long white dinner gown in a football field

Your options are limitless. Go make that statement with your dress already.

3. Ankara

lady wearing Afrocentric dinner gown

I know I didn’t list this among the fabrics for evening dresses. But yeah, your ankara and any other African fabric will make a good choice for an Afrocentric fashion dinner event.

lady wearing kente dinner gown

So, go for it and trust your designer to manipulate it into any dress of your choice.

lady wearing ankara dinner gown

4. Jumpsuit Alternatives

lady wearing jumpsuit for a dinner event

Don’t wanna wear a dress to that occasion? A jumpsuit will save the day. 

lady wearing multicolor jumpsuit for an evening event

You can even add a detachable detail by the side that drapes to the floor or keep it simple yet elegant.

lady wearing green jumpsuit for a dinner event

Your evening dress can have any neckline or sleeve. Just make sure it’s something you’re comfortable with. For instance, you can make it strapless, V-neckline, or give it a plunging neckline.

lady wearing red evening dress

In addition, it can come in the form of any type of dress, be it mermaid, A-line, high-low, etc. 

And when you’re accessorizing, try to keep it minimal so your evening dress remains the focus of attention. 

lady wearing a long evening dress

Also, go for jewelry that complements your attire. Don’t be scared to wear both gold and silver too.

Most importantly, avoid flat shoes. They’ll undermine the power of your chosen dinner gown styles. Instead, go for comfortable heels to give you that confident carriage and pose while you walk and take pictures.

lady wearing dinner dress singing at an event

Use all you’ve learned here to look good as a wedding guest or an invitee to that formal dinner occasion.

Would you like to see more dinner gown styles? Here they are:

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Victoria B. Willie

Writing has always been a part of me. From writing stories as a young child to studying Communication Arts in the university, it has always been more than a medium of expression to me.

And then one day, I found myself toeing the path of an entrepreneur and becoming a fashion enthusiast. This made me develop an interest in content marketing and copywriting which I've been chasing alongside my fashion career.

That aside, when I'm not sharing style articles, selling with stories, or sketching fashion-forward pieces for Ria Kosher, you'll find me telling wild stories that always come with a twist.

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