What to Wear: Masquerade Ball Edition

Contributed by Hallie Salmi

So you’ve purchased your tickets to the Junior League of Annapolis’ Masquerade Ball. You check the invite and see cocktail attire is suggested and black optional is acceptable. Okay, Great. But what does that mean?! Here are some helpful tips to help you decide what to wear.

Attire For Women:

  • Cocktail Attire Definition: Cocktail attire is festive and fun but not formal. An elegant party dress, typically knee length, and a killer pair of heels.
  • LBD = BFF: Your LBD (little black dress) is your go to dress. Choose richer fabrics like lace, chiffon and velvet to boost the typical black.
  • Color Your World: Don’t feel like you need to limit yourself to just black: jewel tones, icy pastels and large prints also acceptable.
  • Think Outside The Dress:  You branch out into dressy separates as well.  Tulle skirts, taffeta and brocade topped with a beaded shell, a sheer top or and elegant blouse.
  • Mind Your Hemline: Be modest. This is not the occasion of the mini dress.  If you choose above the knee; go two inches above max. If you stand with hands at your sides; your dress shouldn’t be shorter than your fingertips. Dress pants are also acceptable but take care they are overly casual.
  • Fancy Feet:  An evening shoe is appropriate. This is not a place for your office pumps!  Metallic and jeweled are always a sure thing.
  • Take it to the next level: Up your game to Black Tie Optional by dropping your hemline! This is the time for tea length (mid-calf) or floor length gown. Stick to rich colors and fabrics like satin and taffeta. Stay away from loud prints.
  • Cut the nonsense: Stick with a column dress or A-line. Be wary of trains, fish tails and body hugging styles.
  • Put Some Icing On It: Add a dramatic necklace or dangling earrings but never BOTH. Opt for time honored classics. And don’t forget your evening bag a hard sided metallic bag can be dressed up or down. A beaded or jeweled bag can add some flair to a solid dress.

Attire For Men:

  • Suit Up: Go with a dark color; navy or charcoal gray is a nice alternative to black.
  • A Cut Above: You want your suit to be well-fitted. Dashing and timeless. A toned-down version of a tux. Those elements will be what takes you out of the boardroom and on the town.
  • Simple Finishes: Stick to white shirt, a dark tie and black dress shoes. Make sure they have a presentable shine.
  • Take it to the next level: Up your game to Black Tie Optional. Go with the tux and a bow tie. But learn how to tie it – no clip-ons!

If you have not purchased the tickets, don’t miss out on this exciting event and join us!  For more information about the JLA Masquerade Ball and to purchase tickets, please click on this link: https://www.jlannapolis.org/masquerade-ball/.  For more Masquerade Ball look ideas, visit our Pinterest page: pinterest.com/jlannapolis.
Image result for every day cuvee cocktail

(Photo Credit: Courtney / Everyday Cuvée)