How to look polished on a relaxed day out
Have you ever found it exceptionally difficult to construct a great outfit for a casual event that still looks refined and put-together?
As someone who loves dressing up and looking polished all day every day, typical casual outfits aren’t really my ‘thing’. However, contrary to popular belief, I only wear clothing that I feel completely comfortable in. Yet this seems to be a difficult concept to grasp for many as I am usually wearing a dress.
Dresses have gotten a bed rep over the years. I totally get it. During the reign of Queen Elizabeth I dresses were very uncomfortable thanks to corsets and female oppression but this isn’t the 1600’s. Today’s modern dresses can be the most comfortable clothing you wear, especially a well-made day dress. They can work great for a casual get-up and their dressy impression means that you can easily achieve a polished look that is still comfortable.
Here is how I look sophisticated for a relaxed day outside that is still comfortable to wear…
The vibe – Casual, Basic, Comfortable.
A Sunday stroll in the park or around the village isn’t for a high maintenance outfit.
The Perfectly Polished Day Dress
Although Ted Baker has went very commercial with their seasonal collections over the past few years, what remains is darling daytime dresses that work perfectly for pretty casual wear.
Admittedly I’m a little biased when it comes to this brand because their designs are very on the money for me in terms of personal style. However, even if you are not an avid Tedsetter, when it comes to casual dresses this is the place to look.
I personally feel that the key to a great casual outfit is looking put together but still remaining somewhat basic in styling, shapes and prints. When I am going out for a Sunday stroll, I want to feel polished, refined and without making any statements or dressing in eye-catching colours. My chill out Sundays are mellow and this is what I want to reflect in my outfit. Therefore, this Ted B woodland printed dress, I’ve had in my wardrobe for years, ticks all my Sunny Sunday boxes.
Adding a simple accessorise to your outfit can really tie everything together and polish off your look. Adding a belt to your outfit is such a simple thing to do but has the power to completely transform your look. However, it can also totally ruin your look if you get it wrong so I think it is important to share some of my own personal tips and tricks I love to implement.
When wearing a dress, there is a possibility of bunching up too much of the fabric and it can make the wearer look a little frumpy. Therefore, I suggest having a look at the silhouette the dress creates. If it has little shape to it then a wide belt will perhaps be best or you may need to ditch the belt idea completely. However, if your dress is similar to the one I am wearing with an aline skirt, a belt will add a little extra shape and visual interest. Further drawing the eyes to my favourite body part; the waist. As this dress has intricate detailing in the print, a thin belt which is minimally designed is going to work best. This is because a small belt will help simplify the printed dress and ensure it is not too busy for the eyes.
Coordinate your accessories
The most important thing to consider when putting together a casual look that is still polished and refined is to ensure that everything you are wearing works harmoniously with one another. No piece is contrasting with another. This is why it it is important to co-ordinate your accessories with the clothes you are wearing.
Here I made sure to stick with the monochrome colour palette, choosing a pair of black shoes, my sustainable black mini bag and a black velvet bow hair clip. Complimented with a matching silver bow jewellery necklace and earrings set and topped off with my Essence Pandora charm bracelet. Note how all of my accessory choices are delicate and discrete. They are not demanding attention. Ensuring all my accessories compliment one another keeps the outfit looking simple.
Always ankle boots
My reason for loving ankle boots is simple: they’re the comfortable chic alternative to high heels. I like to think of a good pair of ankle boots as that happy medium. They look a little more dressy than a casual pair of flats and you can walk miles in them, which may be a struggle for a pair of stilettos. With this said, finding a great pair of ankle boots isn’t always easy.
As a conscious consumer living a vegan lifestyle, finding those perfect ankle boots was much harder than I initially thought. Admittedly, I am very fussy when it comes to shoe shopping. I loved the Ted Baker ankle boots but unfortunately they are made with real leather and thus do not align with my moral compass. Therefore, I noted what I liked about the Ted B boots, they release each year, and kept this in mind when browsing for my perfect booties. Somehow, I managed to find a vegan friendly pair with a similar style by Principles. Despite this, it actually took me almost 2 years to find these babies so I recommend staying patient. When you do find them… stock up!
It is entirely possible to look polished but still feel comfortable. It is simply about making practical choices and choosing detail over colour and prints. Regardless of their reputation, dresses may feel like they are only for special occasions but they require less effort to style.