- 6 min read

Ultimate Guide to Dressing for a Garden Party

img of Ultimate Guide to Dressing for a Garden Party

Are you invited to a garden party and wondering what to wear? Choosing the perfect dress for a garden party can be a daunting task, but fear not! This comprehensive guide will help you navigate the world of garden party fashion, ensuring you look your best at any outdoor event.

Understanding Garden Party Dress Codes

Before you start shopping for the perfect garden party outfit, it’s essential to understand the dress code. Garden parties can range from casual to formal, so pay attention to the invitation or ask the host for clarification. Here are some common dress codes for garden parties:

Casual Garden Party

A casual garden party allows for more relaxed attire. Opt for a sundress, a flowy maxi dress, or a cute romper. Pair your outfit with comfortable sandals or wedges, and don’t forget to accessorize with sunglasses and a sunhat.

Semi-Formal Garden Party

For a semi-formal garden party, choose a dress that’s more structured and elegant. A midi dress with a floral print or a solid-colored A-line dress are excellent options. Complete your look with heeled sandals or pumps and understated jewelry.

Formal Garden Party

A formal garden party calls for a more sophisticated outfit. Consider a floor-length gown or a cocktail dress in a luxurious fabric like silk or chiffon. Accessorize with statement jewelry, a clutch, and high heels.

Choosing the Right Dress for a Garden Party

Now that you understand the dress code, it’s time to find the perfect dress for a garden party. Here are some factors to consider when making your choice:


When selecting a dress for an outdoor event, opt for lightweight, breathable fabrics that will keep you cool and comfortable. Some great options include:

  • Cotton
  • Linen
  • Chiffon
  • Silk
  • Rayon

Avoid heavy fabrics like wool or velvet, as they can be too warm for a garden party setting.

Color and Print

Garden parties are the perfect occasion to embrace color and prints. Floral patterns are a classic choice, but don’t be afraid to experiment with other prints like polka dots, stripes, or paisley. If you prefer solid colors, opt for soft, pastel hues or vibrant shades that complement the outdoor setting.

Length and Silhouette

The length and silhouette of your dress will depend on the formality of the event and your personal style. For casual garden parties, shorter dresses or rompers are appropriate. Semi-formal events call for midi dresses or jumpsuits, while formal garden parties may require floor-length gowns.

When it comes to silhouette, choose a style that flatters your body type. A-line dresses, wrap dresses, and fit-and-flare styles are universally flattering and perfect for garden parties.

Accessorizing Your Garden Party Look

The right accessories can elevate your garden party outfit and help you stand out from the crowd. Here are some essential accessories to consider:


A sunhat is not only a stylish addition to your outfit but also a practical one. It will protect your face from the sun and keep you cool during the event. Choose a wide-brimmed hat in a neutral color or opt for a bold hue that complements your dress.


Sunglasses are another must-have accessory for a garden party. They’ll shield your eyes from the sun and add a touch of glamour to your look. Choose a style that suits your face shape and complements your outfit.


When it comes to jewelry, less is often more for a garden party. Opt for delicate, understated pieces that won’t overpower your outfit. A simple pendant necklace, stud earrings, and a bracelet are all you need to complete your look.


Choose a handbag that’s both stylish and practical. A small clutch or crossbody bag is perfect for holding your essentials without being cumbersome. If you opt for a larger bag, make sure it complements your dress and doesn’t look too heavy or bulky.

Footwear for a Garden Party

Choosing the right footwear is crucial for a garden party, as you’ll likely be standing and walking on grass or uneven surfaces. Here are some options to consider:


Wedges are a popular choice for garden parties, as they provide both comfort and style. They offer more stability than stilettos and are easier to walk in on grass. Choose a pair in a neutral color or opt for a bold hue that complements your dress.

Block Heels

If you prefer a more structured heel, consider a pair of block heels. They provide more support than stilettos and are less likely to sink into the grass. Choose a pair in a material that’s easy to clean, like leather or patent.


For a more casual garden party, flats are a comfortable and stylish option. Opt for a pair of embellished sandals or ballet flats in a color that complements your dress. Avoid open-toed shoes if the event is held on grass, as they can be uncomfortable and difficult to walk in.

Garden Party Style Tips

Now that you have the essentials for your garden party outfit, here are some additional tips to keep in mind:

  • Consider the weather: Check the forecast before choosing your outfit and plan accordingly. If it’s expected to be hot, opt for lightweight, breathable fabrics. If there’s a chance of rain, bring a lightweight jacket or shawl.

  • Don’t forget sun protection: In addition to a sunhat and sunglasses, make sure to apply sunscreen to any exposed skin. Choose a lightweight, non-greasy formula that won’t affect your makeup.

  • Keep makeup minimal: For a garden party, keep your makeup simple and natural. Opt for a lightweight foundation or tinted moisturizer, a soft blush, and a neutral lip color. Avoid heavy, cakey makeup that may melt in the heat.

  • Experiment with hair accessories: Garden parties are the perfect occasion to experiment with hair accessories like floral clips, headbands, or bows. Choose an accessory that complements your outfit and hairstyle.

  • Dress for your body type: When choosing a dress for a garden party, select a style that flatters your body type. If you’re unsure, opt for a universally flattering style like an A-line dress or a wrap dress.


Dressing for a garden party doesn’t have to be stressful. By understanding the dress code, choosing the right dress, and accessorizing appropriately, you’ll be sure to impress at any outdoor event. Remember to keep comfort in mind, as you’ll likely be standing and walking on grass or uneven surfaces.

When shopping for a dress for a garden party, look for lightweight, breathable fabrics in colors and prints that complement the outdoor setting. Accessorize with a sunhat, sunglasses, and simple jewelry, and choose footwear that’s both stylish and practical.

By following the tips in this guide, you’ll be the best-dressed guest at any garden party. So, go ahead and RSVP “yes” to that invitation – you’re ready to shine!

The Best Wedding Content

Curated and delivered to your inbox. One weekly e-mail featuring the best content for couples and wedding professionals.

Subscribe Now