Post # 16
frillsandthrills : I’m pretty positive it’s not quite that kind of dinner. I’m not even attending any part of the actual conference (it’s all CLEs for the attorneys), and I’m definitely not expected to have any kind of professional input. When I asked my manager and our associate attorney what they wore last year, they both said they lived in sundresses the whole time. So I’d hate to show up to dinner in something really conservative when everyone else barely changed out of their swimsuit top and into a real bra.
I’m thinking I’m just going to have to ask in the morning and get a specific direction because you guys are all suggesting going way more formal than I was anticipating.
Post # 17
mepayne : PPs (including myself) have not suggested more formal outfits; what we are suggesting is that you consider wearing an outfit that is appropriate for you in your capacity as a professional woman. It’s not an occasion for cute, sexy or whimsical styling. Remember that even though it is a social occasion, it still is a work function that you are attending, not a personal one. Acknowledging that distinction is a good idea, career-wise.
Post # 18
claroquesi : I haven’t suggested that I’m trying to be any of those things, just that I’m trying to be appropriate for the occasion and I just don’t think what you all are suggesting is quite it based on prior conversations I’ve had with my bosses. Maybe I’m wrong, and if I am I’d be happy to buy something like that to fit in with the occasion. But like I said, I’m going to ask in the morning and see what my manager and our female associate attorney are wearing and go from there, because I don’t want to show up looking like Megan Markle if the attorneys are in khakis and sundresses.
Post # 19
midgy86 : The only pic you posted that is remotely appropriate for the business situation OP asked about is the first outfit…and even then, depends on body type as to if someone can pull off those proportions.
Maxi dress and your 3rd pic are TOTALLY inappropriate.
Post # 20
dgirl715 : well you know what clearly it depends on the region because as ive said, ive seen it and AGAIN it wasnt meant to be literal. It was meant for OP to see hey I can wear some nice pants like these and a cute blouse not hey let me wear that outfit. Anyway based on OPs updates I would say my ideas are definately in the ballpark because she is clearly saying it isn’t formal stuffy type of dinner. As long as she doesn’t have cleavage all out and showing too much leg she will be fine. Again I think region plays a large part to our differing mindsets though because Im outside the US and I would say its definately more relaxed.
Post # 21
mepayne : Yes good idea, ask your female colleagues what they plan to wear. That would give you peace of mind. I feel you I wouldn’t want to be overdressed in this situation.
Post # 22
Just curious, is your manager a paralegal or an attorney? A cocktail party at a steakhouse – you honestly can’t go wrong with a little black dress and a neutral colored pair of heels (or even if a fun pop of color pair of heels). Even if my manager wore a sundress, I still wouldn’t wear that to this venue with a client. In this setting you wouldn’t be overdressed – sundresses would be way underdressed.
Post # 23
I’d go conservative. You never know in the legal field, and it might be better safe than sorry in this case. I’ll second the idea of a black dress.