Types of Outfits for Different Occasions

With so many outfits available, it can be difficult to know what to wear to every occasion even if a dress code is given. If you’ve ever been confused about what to wear to any occasion, you have to know the types of outfits for different occasions to prevent future occurrences. Tell you why:

Every occasion has a particular style of dressing that suits it. For instance, while the office requires formal office wear or business casual, wearing a pair of skinny jeans to the office would be regarded as inappropriate. This makes it necessary to understand the types of outfits for different occasions and apply the knowledge where and when necessary.

Types of Outfits for Different Occasions

1. Casual

lady with flower in a casual outfit

Casual wear includes outfits that offer you comfort and relaxation. They are a more relaxed manner of dressing which is entirely based on your mood and style. Casuals are outfits for informal settings and activities such as birthday parties, visit to the mall, beach, cinema, club, weekend classes, or simply for staying at home. They mostly include slip dresses, shirt skirts, sweat pants, pyjamas, shorts, denim jackets, rompers, jumpsuits, ripped jeans, jeans, tees, polo and other streetwear, loungewear or Afro-urban pieces.

two teenage boys in casual wears

Casual wears are usually paired with sandals, flip-flops, sneakers, palms, and other informal shoes for men and women.

2. Formal Office Wear

a woman in a formal office dress

This includes what you wear to a typical corporate environment. Most formal organisations accept suits, knee-length skirts, midi skirts, shirts, pants, ties and modest tops. All of these must never be torn, rumpled, frayed or dirty.

a man in a formal office wear - Types of Outfits for Different Occasions

When accessorising for the office, everything has to be in moderation to avoid getting queried. For shoes, flats, block heels, court shoes and stilettos are appropriate for ladies while loafers, Oxford shoes and other dress shoes are appropriate for men.

3. Business Casual

lady in a business casual outfit

This is an off-shoot of the formal office wear. It is a less formal business wear. A business casual outfit incorporates components of both casual and formal office attires. These types of outfits for different occasions include khakis, slacks, chinos, blouse, open-collar or polo, sport coat, optional tie, knee-length or midi skirts/dresses, a tailored blazer, tunics, sweater, with dress shoes that cover all or most of the feet. An unconventional example of a business casual look is wearing suits with sneakers. You can wear business casual outfits on Fridays to work or to meetings outside the office.

man in blue suit and white sneakers

4. Sports Wear

two ladies wearing activewear - Types of Outfits for Different Occasions

Otherwise known as activewear, these are outfits worn for physical exercise and sport activities. They include tracksuits, joggers, T-shirts, polo, etc., paired with a cap, sneakers, trainers or canvas. Activewear can as well be worn as casual wear thus resulting in another style of dressing called athleisure.

smiling black man rocking activewear

5. Smart Casual

a lady in a smart casual outfit

Smart casual is a relaxed extension of business casual. These types of outfits for different occasions aren’t necessarily worn to the office. You can wear them to parties, weddings, dates, etc. They include jeans, chinos, palazzos, bright coloured shirts, tees and jackets, sweaters, shirt dresses, sunglasses, etc. A typical example of a smart casual outfit is a pair of jeans with a tucked-in shirt, sweater and a belt. The major difference between smart casual and business casual is that while the former is more relaxed and liberal when it comes to accessorising and mixing colours, your colours for business casual has to be toned down or conservative just like formal office wear. And while business casual is for the office, smart casual is for everything outside of it that requires class and elegance.

Noble Igwe in a smart casual outfit

6. Black Tie

a couple ready for a black tie event - Types of Outfits for Different Occasions

If you’ve got an evening event such as a dinner, prom or a red carpet event, then you should wear black-tie outfits. Black tie is the dress code for social events that begin after 6 p.m. For men,  tuxedos and dinner jackets are the order of the day while floor-length gowns are required of women with befitting shoes, accessories and hairstyles.

a couple in a black tie outfit

7. Native Wear

a lady in a native ankara outfit - Types of Outfits for Different Occasions

These types of outfits are usually made with indigenous fabrics such as Ankara, Kente, Aso oke, lace, brocade, etc. They include Agbada, Iro and Buba, Woko, Senator, Atiku, Dashiki, Isi Agu, Etibo, Kaftan, Jalabiya, everything Ankara, etc. Native wears can be worn to weddings, traditional occasions and religious gatherings. They can as well be worn to work on Fridays.

Ebuka rocking a red agbada

Always remember that the look you pull off depends not just on the clothes but the shoes and acessories you pair them with. For instance, you may have a smart casual look by wearing a shirt dress and a pair of flats but wearing that same shirt dress with sandals gives you a casual look. So when next you get confused about what to wear, be sure to consult our guide on the types of outfits for different occasions.

Nelly Henshaw

Nelly Henshaw is an Applied Criminology and Sociology Graduate working in Youth Justice Service who equally shares a passion for personal wellbeing and everything to do with Lifestyle such as, Food, Travel, Art, Fashion, Hair and Beauty. She lives in London, UK.

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