Smart casual is probably the hardest dress code to get right: everybody knows what ‘smart’ looks like and how to tailor that for a job interview, a Christmas party, or even a funeral. Similarly, casual clothes, what you wear when you’re under no dress code whatever, are easy to get right. Showing up to a summer part in shorts, going for a drink on a Sunday afternoon in a hoodie: this is something you can get instinctively right.
Smart casual, however, requires you to combine what you know about the even with what you have in your wardrobe and come out with something smart enough that you look like you’ve made an effort and casual that you don’t look like you’re on way to the opera. Smart casual is different for every ‘smart casual’ event so getting it right requires some good judgement and good luck.
We can help you understand how to dress up, and dress down, so whatever the event, you’ll always fit right in.
A good smart casual outfit is normally made up of two items from either side of the spectrum: a suit and trainers, for example or jeans and a blazer. Each item dresses the other up or down, and the end result means you look like you’re putting in an effort without looking too formal.
If you’re pairing up jeans with a smart jacket or blazer, make sure you pick a well fitted pair of jeans that aren’t treated to look distressed (or in fact, actually distressed) – uncontroversial is the word of the day here.
If you want to punch up the resulting ensemble, you could consider wearing a statement of a t shirt under the blazer: a shirt tips too far toward formal and a plain t shirt is wasted opportunity to broadcast a bit of personality in your outfit. One of Supremebeing’s Bear T Shirts is a great option here: a clear, centred design that will be visible under a blazer or jacket; and one that adds character and doesn’t risk undermining the ‘smart’ half of the ensemble with a controversial or immature slogan. Simplicity is the key here: bright colours and complicated patterns overpower the naturally low-key smart casual effect.
Keeping this guide in mind will help you dress up or down and look just right for any event you get invited to, whether it’s professional networking or a friend’s birthday.
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