What to Wear to Grad Parties and Ceremonies

April 11, 2019

What to Wear to Grad Parties and Ceremonies
Trunk Club

It’s graduation season, and that means lots of celebrations, photo-ops, and gatherings are on the horizon. But what do you wear to each event? We’ll show you how to dress for casual, semi-formal, and more formal graduation events.

For casual celebrations

This look is for back deck chilling with a drink in your hand and a graduation card in your pocket. It’s pretty much your typical summer outfit taken up a notch. A short-sleeve button-down looks casual on its own, but a jersey blazer on top makes it right for a special event. We have sneakers paired with this outfit, but not just any old sneakers will cut it. Make sure they’re fresh-looking and clean—especially if they’re white, and definitely if this is what you’re wearing to a ceremony.

A traditional ceremony

Graduation ceremonies tend to be a bit more dressy than their after-parties, so start with the bones of a casual Friday work outfit, then swap in more fun pieces. Where you might wear a white button-down, try a pattern. When you’d reach for a navy sport coat, wear something with a bit of personality. If you need some tips on matching shirts and ties, we have a quick guide for you to glance over. And as always, you can’t go wrong with a brown belt and shoes. But it’s nearly summer, so lighten up with tan or cognac versus a more traditional brown.

Formal commencements

Always check to see if there’s a dress code, since the last thing you want is to show up underdressed. For more formal events a suit is expected. Navy and grey are our recommendations—keep the black suits in your closet (save those for weddings or nighttime events). Underneath, a crisp white button-down is always classic. No need to be straight-laced with your accessories, though. Maybe grab a tie or pocket square in your graduate’s school colors for a personal touch.

At Trunk Club, our stylists help people build their best wardrobes by discovering what fits their body, their budget, and their personal style.