What To Wear To Summer Events When The Dress Code Isn’t Casual

We recently ventured to the decadent and delightful Food & Wine Classic in Aspen to sip and sample some of the finest wines and bites in the world. Walking around the event got us thinking: What is the best way to dress for summer events that aren’t a barbecue or at the beach— when you actually need to pull yourself together and look like a lady while somehow still being both comfortable and on trend? The equation may be a little difficult, but the pieces chosen don’t have to be. If we learned anything from a few days spent mingling with the culinary crowd, going from event to event to event, it was this: The key is choosing pieces that look good from early in the day to late in the night, that won’t show if you happen to have a dining or drinking mishap, and that breathe under the hot summer sun. Oh, and only choose a jumpsuit if you don’t plan on drinking very much because as cute as they may be, they make bathroom visits a feat. Ah, the challenges of being a chic woman. Here, some of our top picks for putting your best fashion foot forward at summer’s most fabulous events.

BFA.com/Neil Rasmus

Yes, bathroom visits may present a challenge, but jumpsuits are a one-piece solution to looking chic all day long sans too much effort. Better yet, you stay cool while looking fab.

A long-sleeve, off-the-shoulder top with a bright pattern checks several boxes: You’re on trend; it’s airy but has long sleeves should there be an evening chill; and the dark pattern means even a little spill won’t slow you down.

Choose a piece that goes easily from day to night, so if the fun keeps on going, so do you.

Easy-breezy dresses work well under a hot sun while also looking effortless. Win-win.

Opt for a shoe both classic and comfortable. An easy slip-on does the trick, especially when paired with a frilly above-the knee dress or a flowy maxi.

What says ladylike elegance more than a cropped white pant? You can show off a great pair of sandals while demonstrating that you have summer style on lockdown.