SECTIONS
What would you like to know?
Share this Story
/

Style guide cheat sheet: How to dress smart casual

Bobby Schuessler is a New York City-based fashion and beauty writer, contributing to brands like E!, Us Weekly, Glamour, Lucky, Men's Health and of course, SheKnows.

Smart and sophisticated

Headed to after-hours drinks or a not-too-fancy date night? Ensure you have smart casual dressing down to a science. And, guess what? Our style guide below makes mastering the dress code as easy as one, two, three.

Whether you're headed to happy hour with your colleagues, getting ready to enjoy a night out with your husband or on your way to a holiday party, you want to make sure your ensemble is smart and sophisticated, but still casual at the same time. Not sure if you can ace that look? Don't worry — it's simple! As long as you use our dos and don'ts checklist below.

1

Do wear your LBD

An LBD is the easiest item to make any look either appear really dressy or more casual. If your event isn't too formal, pair your LBD with sensible shoes (like a kitten heel) and simple, non-glitzy jewelry.

Smart and sophisticated
Do

Photo credit: Daniel Deme/WENN.com

Smart and sophisticated
Don't

Photo credit: WENN.com

2

Do wear a blazer

If you want to appear instantly smart, always go for a blazer. And if you're simply going out on the weekend (no work or business meeting), a fitted, embellished jacket works just as well.

Smart and sophisticated
Do

Photo credit: Lia Toby/WENN.com

Smart and sophisticated
Don't

Photo credit: revolutionpix/WENN.com

Smart and sophisticated
Buy

Marl Blazer (Zara, $90) 

3

Don't go for basic

If you want to appear smart, yet still stand out, don't wear your most basic duds. Instead of that go-to plain gray or blue sweater or tee, go for a stunner that has fun detailing like stripes or a vibrant pattern.

Smart and sophisticated
Don't

Photo credit: WENN.com

Smart and sophisticated
Do

Photo credit: Michael Wright/WENN.com

Smart and sophisticated
Buy

MSGM Long Sleeve Shirt (The Corner, $295)

4

Don't forget your satchel

A clutch may seem too formal and a cross-body bag too laid back, so when you're going for the smart casual look, test out a structured top-handle bag instead. So ladylike!

Smart and sophisticated
Don't

Photo credit: Alberto Reyes/WENN.com

Smart and sophisticated
Do

Photo credit: WENN.com

Smart and sophisticated
Buy

Carlita Mini Satchel (SoleSociety, $40)

More fashion

5 Ways to wear plaid
How Fashion Week trends trickle down to the masses
Trend we love: Studs

Tagged in
Comments
Follow Us

SheKnows Media ‐ Beauty and Style

Hot
New in Beauty & Style
Close

And you'll see personalized content just for you whenever you click the My Feed .

SheKnows is making some changes!