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What does black tie mean? – LifeSavvy



  A couple, dressed for a black necktie event, the man is wearing a tuxedo and the woman is wearing an elegant dress.
Viorel Sima / Shutterstock

You have an invitation to a black tie event in your hand and you want to make sure you are properly dressed? We are here to help you.

Black Tie is the second most formal evening wear, but the most formal one you'll ever need to dress for. White tie invitations are rare, unless you are rich, famous or in politics. However, there is a high chance that you will be invited to a black tie event at some point in your life.

Do not worry! Formal dress codes are often easier to navigate than casual ones, though clothes are usually more expensive. While terms like "elegantly casual" leave room for interpretation, the black tie gives you clear limitations in terms of what you can wear. Keep this guide for reference so you can impress everyone the next time you visit a Black Tie feature.

Black Tie: A Definition

Black Tie is sometimes referred to as a "smoking" or "smoking" clothing policy because it is expected by men.

In the mid-1

9th century, tuxedos appeared, which were a casual alternative to dress coats. (Even leisurewear was much fancier then it is today.) After the First World War, the Fall Ball in New York's Tuxedo Park gave the garment its name as well as its glory. The ball had been a formal affair with a white tie in the past, but after the war the dress code changed to a less formal tuxedo.

Tuxedos were originally designed to strike a balance between informal lounge suits and highly formal dress suits. They were first called "tuxedos" because they were perfect for informal evening events (the term is still used today).

Nowadays, tuxedos and other black ties are reserved for very formal events, as they are generally considered dress codes that have shifted in the direction of the casual. You may not need this knowledge often, but it is helpful to know how to dress to impress with a tie function.

When to Wear a Black Tie

You never need to wear a black tie unless specifically requested. Black Tie events can be:

  • Formal weddings
  • Formal dinners
  • Balls
  • Galas
  • Fundraiser

Black tie events are sometimes referred to as "black tie required" to them from the less distinguished formal "black tie optional". Other invitations may include "black tie favored" or "black tie requested" message. At these events, men should wear a tuxedo (if they can afford one) or a dark suit (if they can not). , However, if you only see "black tie" as a dress code, you should assume that this is necessary.

"Creative Black Tie" is a similar dress code option. This means that you should continue to follow the rules for black ties, but be creative with interesting colors, fabrics and trends.

For many black ties, some guests mistakenly interpret the dress code as "formal." "Although the hosts will hopefully understand when people accidentally undress, it's best not to be one of these people – and since you have this guide, you will not!

Black tie for women

The black tie The dress code obviously emphasizes the tuxedo. Women are a bit lighter because the same clothes and robes are often used for formal, black and white tie events. You should wear a long dress or an evening dress or a formal cocktail dress.

While floor length silhouettes are most common, a short but chic cocktail dress is often suitable for a black tie event. Maybe you can even put together a black tie look with formal items, like a long skirt with a nice blouse. However, as this is difficult to do without looking too casual, it is best to avoid it.

All colors work. But if you choose white, make sure it does not look too much like a wedding dress (and of course never wear white for a wedding, black, other dark colors, and gemstones are always a safe bet.)

While the dress code is formal, Black Tie events may be more formal or casual, traditional events may favor classic designs, but on other occasions – such as creative black tie events – you may find yourself having interesting trends in your dress or dress Make sure your dress fits well and is made of high quality fabric.

Heels are traditional, but if you can not or do not want to wear them for the health of your feet, you can do it with chic Flats work. Add jewels, long gloves, clutches and other formal accessories to enhance your look Hair can be up or down and the make-up can be anything you want, as long as it's polished.

When it's cold, be sure to invest in a formal overcoat or a nice wrap or scarf. Leave your practical smock at home!

Black tie for men

Men do not have as many options here as women. If there is a black tie in the dress code, you must wear a tuxedo. But even in a tuxedo, you can express your personal style.

First, there is the color of your tuxedo. While black is traditional, dark blue is a great alternative if you want something different. White dinner jackets stand out in the crowd and are great for the summer. Different colors and fabrics, and even some patterns are perfect for a creative occasion for tying.

Then there's the material: a velvet jacket instead of a traditional fabric looks vintage and interesting. You can also choose between different reverse styles, such as the textured "umbrella" or the minimalist "scarf".

Your pants should match your jacket with some exceptions. For example, you should wear normal pants with a velvet jacket or black pants with a white jacket. Make sure your tuxedo, including the pants, is tailor-made to match length and fit. A slim fit represents the perfect balance between modern and classic.

Usually you wear a plain white business shirt and a black bow tie. Be sure to choose a business shirt with holes for cufflinks – this is not your daily routine. If the dress code is "creative black tie," you can wear a black shirt, a red bow tie, or some other trendy variation. For a more formal event, you can show some personality with a unique fly. However, avoid wearing a white bow tie unless it is a white tie event.

Vests are optional and should match your tuxedo (plain black is traditional, but textured fabrics or other dark colors can bring variety). If you do not wear a vest, you may be wearing a cummerbund matching your fly, but both are slowly becoming optional for black tie events. Make sure you wear one or the other for the most formal black tie event.

Polished patent leather shoes like Oxfords are a safe bet, but you can also choose more creative options, such as formal velvet slippers. Wear dress socks that match your pants. You should definitely wear cufflinks, but other accessories like a dress watch or a pocket handkerchief are optional. Keep accessories simple and classic.

In winter you can also add a formal coat to your look. Perfectly groomed hair and facial hair are crucial in all seasons.

Invitations to ties are relatively rare for most people. If you are lucky enough to get one, take the opportunity to give it all and look your best. If you express yourself within the Black Tie rules, you may find that putting on formal events can be fun.


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