advice on attire

I just received an invitation to attend a function where the dress is recommended to be “casually elegant”. For the guy (me), what can I wear? Sport coat? Sport coat and tie? Suit and tie?

Suit and tie! :slight_smile:

Not a monkey suit! i.e. formal as for a groom or groom’s man. :rolleyes:

That IMHO is a stupid invitation:rolleyes:, and doesn’t mean anything parsable.

You have to read into it what the event is, and who’s inviting you, neither of which you mentioned.

If I got an invitation like that with no further information, I would wear nice slacks with a sport coat with a nice shirt (either one that buttons down the front, or something like a wool polo) but no tie. I would also consider skipping the jacket, but you can never go wrong with a jacket.:cool:

Traditionally the standard is casual, black tie, or formal. These were originated in the days when “formal” meant white tie & tails for evening, so the bar was higher than today. Now “casual” can mean it’s OK to have holes in your jeans;), and some people use “formal” to mean tie & jacket for men.

Years ago when the casual Friday practice was about to edge into the rest of the week, corporate functions started taking to using “business casual,”:confused: which flummoxed me at first, until I figured out that they mean basically (for men) is slacks (no jeans) and a shirt, button-front but maybe could get away with a polo.

Moving to IMHO from GQ (not the magazine, which perhaps might be a source of advice to the OP);).
General Questions Moderator

First off, I’d smack whoever used such an oxymoronic phrase.

Second, I’d want to consider whether I would want to attend a function where the host has such a poor grasp of the English language.

Third, I’d call the host and ask him what s/he’s wearing and adjust my attire accordingly.

I’d go with a suit. A man in a sharp-looking suit…rowr! I bet most of the dudes there will err on the casual side–you can be the elegant alternative.

Personally, if I were a guy I’d wear a jacket to that. Of course, if I were a guy I’d go beat up whoever wrote that crap.

I once got invited to a party that was “luau formal”. WTF?

That’s when you wear an Aloha, Sir shirt.

Union suit, cumberbund, Red Lobster bib.

That makes no sense to me, I would either ask them, or wear what you would normally wear to that type of event.

I have a hunch that phrase is directed more at the ladies (ie, it’s semiformal but pls find a stylish outfit and do your hair and makeup). for guys I assume they’d be happy to clarify if it’s suit, sport coat, or slacks.

Hey - I’m a girl and if I got that “dressing instruction” I’d be flummoxed too. I guess go with suit and tie. That way if you see other people before you go in and you are too dressed up you can ditch the tie and coat and casual it down a notch.

Seriously - casually elegant? Are you going to a party given by the writers for the J. Peterman catalogue?

Quite frankly I’m tempted to ask for your friend’s phone number so I can call and ask what they were smoking to make themselves think they would look sophisticated by using a term that only serves to cause confusion in their guests…

Tails with cutoff shorts.

Dumb fucks. Maybe you can check out the hall this event is being held at and see if there’s a standard there.

“Casually elegant”? I guess I would wear my denim tux!

If so, keep your eyes on the girl with the face like a frying pan. I hear she really brings the house down when she starts to dance.

I honestly can’t remember ever seeing this dress code before, so I actually Googled it. As it turns out, GQ has the Best. Answer. Ever. as far as stupid dress codes go.

Second the motion you call your host and ask them what they’ve got in mind. I’m thinking they meant “casual dress, but not jeans casual… more like, chinos casual”, but then went all wanker on you.

Shorts, tshirt and a top hat.

If I were you I would wear a pair of slacks and a cashmere sweater.

You can never go wrong with cashmere. (Well, unless it’s 30 degrees out.)

That’s hot. Now I feel all fluttery inside.

You oughtta see my take on “sophisticated provocative.”


Nice shirt with Spider-Man cuff links.