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Did someone say party? Whether you’re throwing a garden party, celebrating a birthday or dining with friends, these occasion outfits have you and your family covered


Dresses to make a song and dance about

Let’s hear it for the printed midi dress – easy to wear, ultra-flattering and bang on trend for summer 2021, it’s what we consider a wardrobe ‘triple threat’. Earn additional style points by opting for a party dress featuring this season’s most-wanted details: think polka-dots, puff sleeves, broderie anglaise, square necklines, ruffles and smocking. Not just for birthday bashes, a fancy frock will ensure you are the best-dressed wedding guest at any formal events in your calendar, too.

This year’s sartorial mood is one of seizing the moment – so instead of saving your prettiest summer dresses ‘for best’, team them with flat sandals and trainers and wear on high-rotation throughout the warmer months. Try the mini-me look via our latest collaboration with Ghost for a standout look for kids’ parties (top tip: it makes it easy to identify your little ones amid the melee.) Keep a lightweight jacket or elegant blanket wrap to hand for evening events that may turn chilly.

Not a fan of dresses? We hear you. Try a brightly coloured trouser or shorts suit instead.

Shop women’s partywear

Shop women’s party dresses


Set the tone with retro-inspired men’s shirts

If there’s an item in your wardrobe that says ‘off-duty’, it’s the sunshine-ready short-sleeve shirt. Taking inspiration from the golden age of the holiday shirt in the 1950s and 1960s, the boxy revere-collar shirt (or bowling shirt) looks best paired with chino shorts or cargo trousers and a pair of vintage-inspired sunglasses.

The ideal party shirt for a garden do, night on the town or stag weekend, a floral shirt in an airy material will keep you cool when dusting off your dance moves (after all, it’s been a while…) or participating in party games. Don’t miss our eye-catching geometric-print linen-blend shirts from Autograph that also come in big and tall sizes. Complete your relaxed summer party outfit with a cocktail in a can for fuss-free refreshment outdoors.

Hone your wardrobe further with our tips for men’s smart-casual dressing and guide to formal menswear dress codes.

Shop men’s party shirts

Shop men’s party outfits


New shapes for kids to throw on the dancefloor

Children love to get dressed up in something special, whether they are celebrating their birthday or attending a family party. The secret to kids’ partywear is balancing style with comfort to enable them to run, skip and play to their heart’s content – try pairing a fancy floral dress with a pair of rip-tape sandals, or team a mini-me printed shirt with shorts and trainers for a high-low mix that works for active kids.

Bright colour instantly signals fun, so embrace rainbow shades, like a sunny yellow sleeveless dress or pale pink chinos, to make a change from sober grey school trousers. Playful accessories add the final flourish – take your pick from cute kids’ sunglasses in sweet shapes to tie-dye bucket hats for outdoor parties and picnics in the park.

Don’t forget to kit the kids out for warm weather with our holiday-ready beachwear edit and summer style tips.

Shop girls’ party outfits

Shop boys’ party outfits


Words: Dulcie Emerson

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