Black Tie Decoded
OK, you... or your significant other just received an event invitation and it says "black tie invited." What the heck does that mean?
Ready, set... decode.
Black Tie Invited~
(or Black Tie Optional
) allows hosts to suggest that men wear tuxedos and women wear cocktail, long dresses or dressy evening separates; but not to insist on it. This code is basically the formal equivalent of “business casual. An attempt to please everyone, yet lacks clarity of a precise dress code. If I was going to error, I would error on a black single button dinner jacket with a black bow or skinny tie. Your female date should opt for the dressy evening separates. I would always prefer to be a bit over dressed, the jacket or wrap can be removed, if you feel the need.
Black Tie Preferred
~ This terminology is used by those who want to host a very formal party but do not want to exclude guests that cannot afford a tuxedo or cocktail dresses. Invited guests genuinely unable to meet the expense of buying or even renting a dinner jacket may wear a dark suit and tie instead. Dates of these equally fine men, should be mindful not to leave him in the dust; select a nice but equally modest cocktail dress. He is your date, not your man servant.
This code indicates that the host, without a doubt, expects dinner jackets to be worn by the men. Women wear cocktail, long dresses or dressy evening separates. There will likely be those few guests who will interpret black tie to simply mean formal and arrive in whatever they feel appropriate. The host will graciously excuse the appearance of these ill-informed. You and your companion should go all out for this momentous occasion.
Have more questions, just Ask Robert
... send me your specifics, and I will answer you right back... unless I am sleeping or on a plane.