After my last post on Fashion, I had a few interesting comments that got me a little worked up in reply about the declining standards of dress... the casualisation, if you will, of pretty much all social situations. It irritates me so much, that I thought I'd write a blog post about it. Yes, I ponder the Big Issues on this blog.....



Firstly, I have to say that I love to dress up. There is nothing that signals a fun 'grown up' time to me that putting on something special. I spend my days in child friendly clothes, and one thing that I certainly don't like to do is to wear that sort of thing out when going to dinner with Mr AV, or to the Theatre, or just anywhere out of the ordinary. It has got to a point where Mr AV will nervously tell me that it's 'casual' just in case I turn up far too dressed up compared to the other people we are meeting. He knows that I will frown and get irritated that I have to find something that looks smart enough, but is not too dressy...better my irritation than looking overdressed compared to others he thinks.



One of my pet hates are people who don't adhere to dress codes. If an invitation to something says "Black Tie", then you should be in something that matches to it as closely as possible. It's rude and disrespectful to your host to arrive in something that doesn't - you're sending a signal that you just don't care. There are plenty of ways to be creative and stick to the dress code. If you're a male that doesn't own a Dinner Suit and don't want to hire one, a black suit with a black bow tie will at least make you blend into the crowd.



I went to a friend's Black Tie wedding around 7 years ago, 4 months after having my first child. Needless to say, I didn't fit into any of my Black Tie appropriate dresses.... but I cobbled together something that was appropriate for the dress code, even though it wasn't necessarily an outfit that I looked my best at that time in. But the wedding wasn't about me, so really, no one was looking at what I was wearing with any great interest I reasoned, better to adhere to the dress code than wear something inappropriate but more personally flattering. Mr AV's best friend turned up to the wedding wearing  a navy suit, with an open neck shirt. We asked him if he was going home after the church service to get changed before the reception. No, he was not. He did not like his old Dinner Suit, which had been bought many years before and was now quite unfashionable with large shoulder pads and double breasted jacket. He preferred his nice new Armani suit and open neck shirt combo. Well, he and I had World War 3 over the dress issue for most of the night. His argument was that as he was wearing an expensive suit, it didn't matter if it wasn't a dinner suit. My argument was that you should adhere to a dress code, even if it meant you weren't wearing your favourite thing.... by his argument, expensive designer jeans would be appropriate, because they cost more than a cheap dinner suit.


There are very few places these days where you can legitimately get dressed up for the occasion. There is as argument that it is more egalitarian to allow people to wear whatever they like wherever they like... so if you can't afford a suit, you can wear your jeans to the Opera. Let me say this - if you can afford a $100 ticket to the Opera, then you can afford a pair of trousers or a skirt. I highly doubt the only thing in your wardrobe is a single pair of jeans. And really, what is next? Tracksuits at the Opera?



I've noticed that it tends to be women who like to dress up, and men who don't.... one of our male friends made the comment a few years ago that he was sick of going out and seeing girls with dresses on and hair done looking glamorous for a night on the town, in a group with a bunch of guys dressed in jeans and t-shirts that have been artfully distressed. It just doesn't match.



A week ago we were in the Botanic Gardens on a Saturday when they had set up for three weddings. One of the weddings had some seriously glamorous women attending... how wonderful it was to see some stunning dresses and carefully thought out outfits being paraded on a sunny Saturday afternoon amongst the beautiful setting of the gardens. Even though we were there as garden spectators, rather than dressed up Wedding Guests, it was a nice capping to the day to watch and admire from afar. And isn't that the point? To have a bit of fun in life? If we all dress in boring jeans and the colour black all the time, life just isn't that interesting at all.

What do you think?

all images via my Pinterest boards

56 comments:

  1. I agree with all of this! We always dress up for everything! I'd rather be over dressed than under. Barbara Amiel says clothes are her armour and I agree. The guy in the suit at the black tie do was disrespectful and rude. I agree is odd when you see girls frocked up and guys ultra casual.

    LOVE THIS POST!

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    1. I know that you would Never be underdressed at any event!! Mr AV's friend recognised the error of his ways by never not wearing a Dinner Suit to another Black Tie wedding again. Although he won't back down from his original position. I was quite horrified by it as he really should have known better. xx

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  2. Like you Mr CSW hates smart casual - he doesn't get it - he thinks it makes him look like an American middle management worker on casual fridays.

    This is a layered issue though...While I always adhere to a dress code because like you I think it is proper etiquette and if someone came to a party I was hosting in their pyjamas I would question it although I am really quite relaxed otherwise. But I tend to be bipolar in my attire - I am either dressed for a evening out or in lulu lemon. I only just bought black pair of jeans four months ago because I was either over or underdressed.

    I remember when people used to dress to travel on airplanes - remember that? Now it looks like a post moonie wedding sleepover. I adore people watching especially the ones all dressed.
    But I think dressing down especially in places like New York and London is a reverse snobbery issue. But it has gotten out of control - you might have joked about tracksuits at the opera but I did see a woman wearing Juicy velour at the royal opera in covent garden- maybe she goes everynight so she is trying to prove the night means nothing to her? Brian May was wearing ripped jeans - mind you he is a rock star but still. It seems like they are way too cool and they think it is very "bridge and tunnel" to get dressed up. I am not joking when I say that when my girlfriends and I go out for a drink in a nice bar, we make sure we are as smart casual as possible otherwise people mistake you for either a prostitute or even worse, a WAG wannabe.

    Heidi, you bring up a seemingly harmless topic but also a very loaded one! xx

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    1. Oh I know it's loaded and a lot of people don't agree with me, and that's fine.... and fairly obvious considering what you see when out and about.
      I cannot BELIEVE that you saw a woman wearing a velour Juicy tracksuit at the Royal Opera!!!
      I'm finding your take on London fashion quite interesting with the smart casual thing or you look like a prostitute or WAG. We went out to dinner at Le Cirque last year with clients of Mr AV's. I was the only female and I wore a dress (nothing too over the top, very simple black dress in shape but it has a big stone necklace thing on it) and I was the most dressed up woman at the restaurant. I was shocked. SHOCKED! It really wasn't a very dressy dress, but if you can't wear a dress to a supposedly top London restaurant with its super expensive mirrored fitout, where do you wear one? xx

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    2. I will be in London soon and I couldn't care less what the masses think- I will be Dressing the Hell Up and carrying a Chanel bag and wearing Hermes scarves and a full component of jewels and accessories. Even while taking my niece to school and shopping at Waitrose. Couldn't care less if this marks me as some some of under class/WAG/person of low breeding. It's how I roll.

      I long for dressing upon planes. I still sort of do x

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    3. You should try setting a new standard. I'd love to see you board the plane in a silk dress, heels and a hat with gloves. It would no doubt make all the other travellers day! Enjoy London I'm tres green! xx

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  3. I wholeheartedly agree! Personally, I take pleasure from trying to look elegant in my dress at all times (from casual to dressier events)....and as an introvert and one who gets concerned about what others will think if I get the dress code 'wrong', I find it more re-assuring to be slightly overdressed than completely under-dressed (in reality they probably aren't thinking anything, but that is just how my introversion works!). You are so accurate with your comment about how few opportunities there are to dress elegantly in today's society, so I'm all for making the most of every opportunity that presents itself.

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    1. I was once underdressed for what we'd been told was a BBQ - it turned out it was a smart cocktail drinks party in Toorak, Melbourne with waiters and French Champagne. I will never forget feeling completely ill at ease in my BBQ appropriate clothes when all around me the other women were in dresses and heels. Never again! xx

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  4. The Dress Code...wish it applied to everyday living as well. It's called self respect.

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  5. Interesting post, Heidi. I agree that it's disrespectful to blatantly violate a dress code. In some other cases, I do think that issue of social class come into play and that it can get a little grey.

    Speaking of respect and manners, what I hate the most is when you go to a concert or the ballet and people get up to "beat the crowds" as soon as the applause starts. And that behaviour transcends dress! I have seen many a beautifully dressed person get up to leave immediately. Sit down, show your appreciation, and have some respect. This is a major beef of mine!

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    1. Abby, I hate that too - we were at a concert recently where they decided to do encore after encore... the crowds of people who got up and left after each extra piece to run to the carpark, it was embarrassing... so you get out of the carpark before everyone else and save yourself 10 minutes... big deal! xx

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  6. I stand by the adage that it's better to be overdressed than underdressed although this has resulted in a few embarassing situations....like the time I took the invitation to a Tupperware cocktail party literally & wore a skirt with a train, while everybody else was drinking their cocktails.....in tracksuit pants! Rxx

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    1. Ha - that's very funny... and totally something I would do! But I maintain there is no social situation that calls for tracksuit pants, unless you are at the gym or on your way to the gym. And if you've come back from the gym, do everyone a favour and shower and change. xx

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  7. Knowing you've got an excellent sense of what goes and what's in, I would say you would probably gasp in horror over my current wardrobe. Two pregnancies later I haven't had time nor energy to update the closet, and what I've got is at opposite ends of the spectrum, with nothing in between. Evening dresses next to jeans with holes... Totally with you on thte "dress appropriately" part (especially when requested, as in weddings or opera), but when it comes to dinner (we often take the kids with) I usually end up quite casually dressed. No holes and no stains, but jeans and a top it is.

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    1. Not at all Liene! I have suffered the same problem - child bearing is very hard on the wardrobe, especially as you generally are working before you have children so don't have huge amounts of casual clothes or things inbetween very dressy and work wear. And then everything fits differently or not at all afterwards. And don't worry, when we take the kids out I do wear jeans as we're usually going somewhere casual for dinner! xx

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  8. My mother used to wear nylons, a suit and a hat to board a plane!! I was at the theatre a little while ago and whereas some looked respectable, there were sloppy jeans there too. Not wearing black tie to a function where it is specified is defiant really and shows lack of respect. I am however, somewhat relieved that we dont have to dress for dinner every night ala Downton Abbey asI do believe the delight in dressing up might soon wear off! xx

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    1. I'll never forget seeing my first Juicy velour tracksuit (pale pink with Juicy embroidered on the bottom) on a plane... it was 13 years ago, and I started to laugh at how silly it looked... not it's just common place on a plane, in fact a velour tracksuit would be considered dressy by many.
      I think the theatre is the worst for the dress standard - too many people trying to look cool and nonchalant about being there.
      Would hate to dress for Dinner every night a la Downton, but every now and again would be nicexx

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  9. Gosh I am finding this very interesting! I actually don't agree with you at all Heidi, but completely respect your opinion. I don't care what people wear - no matter what the dress code is - I prefer them to feel comfortable, relaxed and happy. It is how people behave that counts for me! Also I believe it is in better taste to be underdressed rather than overdressed.

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    1. You're very easy going Kate! If it were my wedding that was Black Tie and someone came wearing jeans, I'd be quite hurt that they were disregarding the dress code - it would say to me that they didn't care and couldn't be bothered. Having once been underdressed for something (outlined in a comment above about a BBQ) I will never forget how awkward I felt. I'd prefer to be slightly overdressed than under, but then again being completely overdressed is equally difficult... xx

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  10. I hear you loud and strong, Heidi! Adhering to a dress code and wearing something appropriate is not about cost or "brand", but being respectful to the host or occasion. Your friend with the (expensive) suit and open-necked shirt was totally off. Better his old, out of date suit with a bow-tie, than that faux pas!
    It works right down to most occasions. I am constantly surprised by the casualness of people at the wrong time. Such as at a School Speech day. If it's a formal occasion (teachers are required to wear smart suits (or equivalent for women) and their graduation robes, students are in their more formal uniform) and yet (some...well, a LOT of) attending parents will wear an outfit that might not even cut it at a backyard barbie! I'm talking shorts, thongs and an ultra-casual printed t-shirt! I know the parents are only in the audience, but it is still wrong. Again, it is just about being rude and disrespectful and sends out a signal you just don't care. Or have no idea! I could go on about this all day! Great post. So true. And what is more fun than dressing up? Any excuse, I say! Cx

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    1. Interestingly, he is very argumentative, and would not back down on the night, but he wore a Dinner Suit to the next Black Tie wedding we went to... so obviously he realised he was wrong.
      Agree with you about the speech nights etc - how are young people to be taught that you wear certain things to certain situations if the parents are setting the example you outlined? We are constantly battling my 7 year old on matters of dress - he would like to wear tracksuit pants to everything (typical boy...), and hates to wear anything with a collar. I'm constantly explaining to him that sometimes you can't just be comfortable, you have to wear something appropriate. xx

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  11. Very interesting post Heidi. I attended a black-tie Mining industry function at Adelaide Convention Centre last night and was actually surprised at how many people were actually dressed appropriately!! A change from many of the functions we attend. Jo xx

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    1. That's good to hear Jo, considering it was a Tuesday night, a lot of people would possibly have not bothered. xx

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  12. Whilst I think it is rude for men to wear anything less than a suit and tie to a wedding and ladies in their best, I don't like being told there is a dress code as such. We didn't have a dress code for our wedding back in 1990 and everyone came suitably attired with the exception of my hubby's sister who was doing her best Morticia Addams impersonation on the day. I fully agree with tracksuits for the gym and for cleaning day too, do have a nice Country Road velour trackie for cold winter Sunday afternoons/beach walks/evenings. I have endeavoured to bring my kids (teenagers) up with dressing appropriately for occasions, and think I have won that battle with them happily dressing as the occasion demands. Not dressing up for the opera or ballet is just not on either, however I think it is also what people are brought up. Even going to school events some of the mums are dressed in their denim underpants (not appropriate after 16 years old ladies).

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    1. This is probably the crux of the problem - it's what you've been brought up believing to be appropriate. If you don't state a dress code, everyone wears what they feel is appropriate, and you get a wide variety of dress based on what that particular person thinks is the appropriate thing. I like to think of most dress codes as a guide to the formality of the event with a bit of leeway, however Black Tie is always Black Tie in my book. Laughing at your wedding situation... there's one in every family at a wedding I think. They like to make a statement....! xx

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  13. I love this post Heidi.
    I, myself, struggle with 'casual' dress code. Each pay week I purchase at least two dresses on eBay (much to the dislike of my Husband) and wear a frock almost daily, even on weekends. If you saw how the people dress that I work with you would die. Rubber thongs, daggy old tops and ripped shirts, no make up - people have lost all pride. We have casual day every Friday and instead of wearing what the masses do - mostly tracksuits - I put on one of my new purchases and team it with heels. You should see the looks I get. I've been openly asked why I don't wear casuals on casual day. My response is - I don't 'do' casual. I think it all boils down to self pride.

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    1. I think it's great that you stick to your guns and down dress down on a Friday. Mr AV used to work for a big corporate firm in Collins Street in Melbourne. They introduced casual Friday (this is around 10 years ago, when it was a new concept still) and then had to tell people that that did not mean they could wear tracksuits to the office. Honestly, some people have absolutely no idea. I remember when I used to work in the CBD in Melbourne that casual Friday would bring out some interesting choices... it's actually a specific dress code in the US, but here in Australia people wear what they'd wear around the house on a weekend. In the end a lot of places got rid of it as a concept, it proved too problematic with client meetings etc.
      I'm personally a huge fan of the dress in Summer - cool, looks good, not a lot of thought involved in getting dressed in the morning, what's not to like?! xx

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  14. I could have written this post myself ( well, maybe not, but I agree with so many of your sentiments) I can't believe that man had the temerity to turn up in a blue suit toa black tie event! So rude!
    Don't even get me started on the horrors of what some people wear to work! A friend who has recently moved to Sydney from the UK was utterly horrified at what passes as work appropriate clothing here. He commented that many men dress like children (shorts, tees, thongs etc) well past the age at which they're appropriate attire off the beach. I tend to agree....
    I'm sure there are places where men dress in proper clothes, but at my work, it's rare to see a man in proper clothes....
    I also despise 'sports utility wear' as it' called in our house. I would never, ever wear sports clothing to anything other than yoga/Pilates etc.
    I am almost always overdressed both at work and play... Although having to wear running shoes has ruined that for a while.

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    1. Your work environment would mean that there would definitely be a grey line between student dress and academic dress. It's funny, just writing that has made me feel old... I remember seeing Mr AV's grandparent's after Uni one day, they were definitely of a different era, and they were shocked that I was wearing jeans and a jumper to Uni. Mr AV's grandfather wore a three piece suit to University, way back in the 20's - early 30's, and Mr AV's grandmother, who had never worn less than a dress anywhere couldn't believe her eyes. I actually felt quite embarrassed. But then again, when we were invited to their house for dinner I had to wear a dress, couldn't be black (only for mourning), and so I ended up borrowing clothes from my Mother, which did the trick and I got the seal of approval!!
      The friend that decided to wear the suit to the Black Tie wedding was living in Sydney at the time (the wedding was in conservative Adelaide), and part of his justification was that it would be perfectly fine if he were there. But he wasn't.... xx

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  15. Excellent post Heidi. I agree entirely. It is so refreshing to see that most of the comments agree too. I believe that it takes a certain amount of confidence particularly in this day and age to take pride with ones appearance in public. I feel like the world has become feral, in regards to dress and manners. Years ago people aspired to present themselves well. Nowadays it seems that people have become lazy and disrespectful. Unfortunately, we have ghastly people on TV who are role models for the younger generations and this doesn't help at all! Yes it does take a bit of effort to look presentable, but golly you feel so much better for it and I commend both men & women who do so too. Another thing (whilst on my soapbox) you don't have to spend a fortune on expensive outfits. I have received many comments whilst wearing clothing from chain stores. Jane xx

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    1. I think you've summed up my point well Jane, it isn't about wearing expensive clothes, more appropriate ones. I know I feel a lot better about myself when I'm dressed well, even if I don't think I'm going anywhere for the day.
      I think you're right about the influence of celebrities. It's a sad world we live in that people like the Kardashians get any air time at all, let alone influence people the way that they do. xx

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  16. My motto is to always dress for the place I'd rather be. I think some people truly believe that dressing up is a difficult task, which is intimidating, so they don't. I'd never be caught dead in a track suit on any occasion (probably why I don't own one), and always wear hosiery to work. I don't know anyone else my age who does this - apart from my sister. I actually find it more stressful to dress down than I do to dress up!

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    1. Your commitment to hoisery during the heat of a Perth Summer is inspiring Z! I always love your outfits, and I bet that others appreciate your colour and flair as well when they see you pass in the street... life is too short to play it safe. Why be dull?

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  17. Gorgeous pictures and perfect post. We don't dress as much as the Anglo-Saxons (in which I include Australians, I hope you don't mind !!) in France; you might not have noticed iconic Inès de la Fressange at the Monaco wedding,for example, but she was wearing thongs (as in sandals !!..) But I agree that seeing that people have made an effort is really pleasant ; the thing that infuriates me most in France is the casual way some TV presenters look, messy hair, bad make-up and ill-fitting jeans too sometimes. If you're on show (and well-paid for it), the least you can do is make an effort !xxx

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    1. I've always thought it was quite French to dress down a bit, it's the casual chic thing, to look as if you're not trying hard? But then again, you see the opposite in France too, with such well presented people who are not doing anything particularly special that day. I also think that the Men in particular take more pride in their appearance than Australian men.... but interesting to hear that you think your TV presenters are letting the side down! xx

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  18. BB from MelbourneMay 2, 2013 at 12:19 AM

    Heidi, you know my feelings on this topic and they run deep! Like you, I fly the flag for High Dress Standards with pride. In fact, I think the higher the better. In my books, no person can be ‘too well-dressed’ or ‘too glamorous’. It’s just not possible.

    I believe the way a person dresses reflects their consciousness. My parents raised me to respect myself and to believe that I’m worth the effort, every single day, even if no one is watching. One aspect of this is the care I take with the way I dress and my grooming. It never goes unnoticed and there’s always someone who appreciates it. We humans are visual creatures and we delight in seeing beauty and creative expression in the flesh, not just in magazines or on the telly. When I see someone who looks good, I always compliment them. Even if I don’t know them. Often, they’re taken aback. Sometimes people say I've made their day. But they always walk away with a spring in their step.

    Heidi, I think we need a call to action urging your readers to try to take every opportunity they can to dress well and to acknowledge others when they make an effort too. We all have to be role models. Who knows, we could start a movement and maybe those ever falling dress standards will rise again one day. We live in hope.

    Best, BB from Melbourne X

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    1. Wonderful rallying cry BB! I agree, I think it shows respect for yourself and for others to take care of your appearance. I've always thought it was interesting that one of the signals for Depression for a Doctor is a lack of grooming in the patient- people that are Depressed don't care about how they present to the world... so it's interesting that there are so many people wandering around that don't make much of an effort at all (not to suggest they are all depressed by any means, but just an observation about perhaps a lack of care). I often compliment someone on what they're wearing too... but then, I talk to everyone so I will strike up conversations about all sorts of things. I'm turning into my Grandmother I think!! Love your thoughtful comment BB xx

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  19. Dear Heidi
    Shouldn't even have been reading this as the "Grand Tour" looms and I still have much to do. But once I'd glanced, so drawn in, including by all the interesting comments and your replies. Completely agree about appropriate dress standards. Also, the specified dress code given in more formal invitations is essential - otherwise, what to wear? What is the host's intention for the event? I write as someone who lived and worked in the diplomatic world for many years, but it's still so important outside that sphere too. I rather like the classic Italian and French attitudes to dress: to present la bella figura and se metre en valeur: always to make the most of one's appearance and dress attractively and appropriately. Even to go the local shops. Not a fashion plate but I'd never go anywhere in thongs and track suit. Neither would husband. He chooses his clothes very carefully each day and on weekends too.

    I had to laugh about AV's grandparents and your Uni jeans. It does show my age! When I attended Q'ld U, girls weren't admitted to lectures if they were wearing slacks or jeans! Dresses or skirts were de rigueur. Only in my last year did they relax this. But we took to it slowly, no-one dared wear jeans until a girl showed up from Monash to do a Dip. Ed. She wore designer jeans and managed to look super smart. Everyone stopped in their tracks and stared for the first few days - then a few brave souls followed. How the world has changed. Now you can tell professors, at meetings in the non-academic world, because they're usually wearing jeans when other men are in suits. Best wishes, Pamela

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    1. Yes indeed how times have changed! I think it was Seventeen magazine in the US that used to run a best dressed on Campus competition in the 60's... think Martha Stewart was one of the runner ups. All the women were in dresses, skirts and twinsets etc... the competition now wouldn't be terribly intense I'd imagine!
      Hope all the packing is going well for the Grand Tour - I'm very envious!! Wish I could be there too and have Fun! xx

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  20. I liked this post Heidi.

    I think it is so important to dress appropriately for whatever the occasion. Black tie means black tie and that's it! I do however think that there are occasions you can overdress for too - hard to be comfortable if you are doing an English farm tour in high heeled sparkly thongs and white jeans (true story and definitely not worn by me, especially as the programme had stipulated closed-in sturdy shoes and a warm jacket) I think the whole point is to match what to wear to the occasion - and clear directions on invitations/conference programmes etc are important. If the dress code is stipulated then it is simply good manners to obey.

    Now - my pet hate re dress standards - can you bring your wisdom to bear on "smart casual"? Particularly as to whether it includes jeans. I have always thought not (at least not blue jeans) as I think that is more just plain "casual". However after I have carefully contrived smart casual outfits (normally floral dress with nice wedges/sandals or skirt and boots if winter) I get to the venue and find people are either all in jeans and boardies or on another occasion in cocktail dresses and high heels. Too confusing. I find it much easier when dress codes are couched in terms of gentlemen's attire eg "lounge suit" or "jacket and tie". Women are usually smart enough to take their cue from that.

    Raining here - lovely.

    Take care.

    xx

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    1. smart casual to me means no denim jeans, but men in jeans and sports jacket/ shirt is ok, so I think I'm on the same page as you... and I'd be wearing what you've written to those events too... can't believe that there was such a discrepancy. I find smart casual the worst dress code as it's so open to interpretation.
      Hilarious re the farm tour!! Enjoy the rain xx

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  21. I work with guys who 30min to work and then stay in their cycling clothes for the rest of the day in the office. Without showering when they get to work of course.

    They don't cycle in suits either...

    B

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    1. That's just disgusting... it isn't even a matter of declining standards of dress, but more a lack of hygiene. I feel very sorry for you... can you make some pointed comments about the stench or something?! xx

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    2. Luckily for me they don't seem to smell too bad. I do have to put up with the unsightly tees covered in sweat for a good few hours until they dry :(

      B

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  22. Heidi, this is such an interesting post and I have really enjoyed reading the comments. I agree with your sentiments. I find that, around where I live in London, most people make a lot of effort with their clothes. I love it. I wouldn't dream of wearing jeans in church or on a date night! x

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    1. Jeans are just so boring, and I think have become the default of the smart casual look (wear them with heels and a nice top and you're covered without looking like you've tried too hard). But I think it's just not very interesting. And most jeans don't look dressy no matter what you pair with them (or how much they cost). xx

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  23. oh I loved all the dresses including you in your fur . Yes I agree I would certainly wear black tie appropriate clothes if itc was stated.

    Re clothes for the occasion I have turned into my mother no white at a wedding for example that being the bride's colour .

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    1. That's not me smr!! It's Olivia Palermo.... but I liked her outfit. I never do white at a wedding, but it's surprising the numbers who do (or wear cream, which is the same in my opinion). xx

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  24. I absolutely agree with everything you say here. I love to get dressed up and I think it's important to follow the dress codes especially for Black Tie events - it makes it so much more special if everyone has made an effort. I love all these glamorous gowns you have shown especially the black one in the second photo - just stunning!
    PS Thank you for your comment. You guessed well! The Hervé Léger bandage dress from 1989 is in the book. I'm sure I would have loved those cut out paper dolls you mentioned!
    http://missbbobochic.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. There's nothing more depressing than going to a Black Tie event and finding people in "normal" clothes - sort of kills the fun for me. The black one was an Oscar de la Renta, and agree, it's just Stunning!! xx

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  25. Heidi, how gorgeous are the dresses you have included in this post. I went to a black tie wedding at the weekend which was very fun. I bought an outfit for it (from the Outnet of course) however it was not a floor length dress: however I was assured by my friends that it was definitely a black tie dress. I love having the opportunity every once in a while to dress up and have fun with clothes - it is a massive treat and something to enjoy. Currently catching up on your posts xxx

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    1. I don't think you have to wear full length to be Black Tie, only if it's White Tie (which pretty much doesn't exist these days anyway... unless you're going to Buckingham Palace or something) it's the style of the dress that's the most important, so agree with your friends! Would love to see some pics on your blog. xx

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  26. I hate dressing up, but agree that denim is not appropriate at a) a dinner at Crown in the Palladium Room and b) a Year 12 Formal where 'Formal dress' was on the invitation. In both cases the offenders were woman 60+ and one was a teacher. Here a suit is a suit and I don't do heels but we do make the effort every 12 months when we have to. Opera and Theater sorry not likely here, different social circles lol

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    Replies
    1. That's terrible Dee!! Denim at a school Formal and a dinner at Crown?! They definitely were old enough to know better.... xx

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  27. I agree with you 100%....and I do always think it is better to be over-dressed than under-dressed...and have brought my children up to think the same thing...it's much more pleasant for all concerned to see beautifully (ie elegant, not necessarily expensive) dressed people...and besides, I always feel happier when "dressed up"...it makes each day more special.

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Architect & Interior Designer. Mother of three. A sometimes Cook, Baker, Reader, Gardener, Fashion Lover, Renovator, Writer of random things in South Australia email me on anadelaidevilla@bigpond.com
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