What is Smart Casual Dress Code?20.06.2022
It’s the dress code that we don’t want to see on an invitation. Even the most sophisticated sartorially savvy will have trouble understanding it. It’s smart casual and it’s unlikely to disappear anytime soon.
However, the smart casual dress code does not have to cause anxiety. It can even be a positive thing. Smart casual can be both sophisticated and relaxed. It can take you from work to the dinner party without making you second-guess your style. This gives smart casual confidence and inspires admiration in others.
However, there is always a catch. If it’s not done well, it can look dull and even worse, as if you just threw your suit jacket over a pair jeans. It’s easy to make a mistake with smart casual attire. Here’s how to avoid it.
What is Smart Casual?
Smart casual is confusing above all. That’s what we’ll say right away. It combines two words that are fundamentally opposites and asks you to understand the difference. Do you prefer to dress smarter or more casually? You don’t know what to do, but smart joggers or casual tailoring can fall under the same category. There are many interpretations.
However, it doesn’t need to be complicated. Smart casual can be described as a stylistic blank check that you can cash in any way you want. It’s also possible to take smart casual literally, and mix smart casual with smarter clothing. You can pair a blazer with jeans or a T-shirt with tailored trousers.
For events that require a certain level of sophistication, but are more casual than others, you’ll see the smart casual dress code used. For events such as wedding receptions, graduations, or fancy restaurants where guests expect some decorum, think relaxed. It’s not enough to just wear a blazer over your jeans. You need to make smart casual look sophisticated.
There are many types of smart casual.
Smart casual can mean many things to many people depending on where they are going and what kind of event it is. Smart casual at graduation is likely to mean something different than smart casual on date nights.
When dressing in this ambiguous code, it is important to think about where you are going and with whom you will be going. This will determine how formal or casually dressed you are. A blazer is an essential part of any outfit if you are going to graduation. Graduations are formal and rigid. Participants will wear caps and gowns. You can show respect by wearing clothes at the higher end of the spectrum.
A blazer is not the best choice for a date, but it might be too much depending on where you are going. You might be more comfortable dressing up on the lower half of your body with tailored trousers and desert boots. On the top, keep it casual with a untucked Oxford shirt, and a bomber jacket.
What’s the Difference Between Casual and Smart Casual?
Although there are many ways to dress smart casual, it is easy to distinguish from casual wear. Casual dressing is easy because there are no rules. Casual could be jeans and a T shirt, sweatpants and sneakers, or jeans and a hoodie. Casual clothing is appropriate for working at home, or going to the pub with your friends.
You need a little more to make smart casual look great. A piece of clothing that is typically associated with formality should be worn to elevate the look without making it too casual. This could include a pleated trouser or a button-down shirt. While casual clothing might be something you wear to work, smart casual clothing is something that you will wear out and about. Smart casual requires a little more thought and effort.
Smart Casual Style Tips
The smart casual dress code is a range. When you put together an outfit, think about where you want to be. These are some key points to keep in mind.
- Keep it Simple.
If in doubt, don’t go overboard. Keep to the tried-and-true wardrobe basics like dark jeans, chinos and Oxford shirts, simple knitwear, and unstructured navy jackets. It’s often easier to be smart casual when it’s less formal.
- Complementary colours
You might wear separates instead of a formal suit for smart casual dress. This means that you can pair a blazer and trousers with a different color. It’s best to choose muted complementary colours. For example, classic grey wool trousers with a navy blazer and white shirt. For something more subtle, you can try earthy tones like brown, stone, and green.
- Detail Nail
We recommend you pay attention to the finer details of smart casual wear. Paying attention to the small things is key. For example, make sure your trousers don’t get too long. If they do get too long, you should have them cut to fit just below your shoes. If your shoes are leather, make sure they’re clean and polished. Match your leathers so that your shoes and belt don’t clash. Details matter.
- Start Casual
Start at the casual end to create a smart casual look. You can wear what you would normally wear in casual situations, but then switch out a few pieces for something more formal. Start with simple jeans, a T-shirt, hoodie, and a pair of sneakers. This casual look can be dressed up or down.
You can make this smart casual by swapping the hoodie out for a blazer. You can also keep the hoodie but add a slimline jacket and Derby shoes instead of sneakers.
A Short History of Smart Casual
Although it is difficult to pinpoint the exact date and origin of “smart casual”, the term is widely believed to have been invented around the 20th century. This was a time when western men would wear tailored clothing every single day as a matter pride. Suits were more than the sum of their parts. A suit was a sign of respectability. It signified that a person cares for his family and is a responsible citizen.
So, suits were the norm. The term “smart casual” was born. It essentially meant wearing a casual suit rather than a business two-piece. The term “business casual” was also used, which basically means the same thing. While both terms are confusing, there is one important difference: smart casual is for events outside of work and business casual is for clothes that can be worn to work.