Author Topic: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"  (Read 6868 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

gellchom

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2139
s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« on: February 08, 2013, 04:23:42 PM »
Today we received an invitation to a bat mitzvah.  The Saturday night party is dinner and dancing at an event space.  The invitation says, "Dress to impress!"  What do you all think of that one?

I don't have to figure out what to wear, because we aren't going to attend.  But I thought of EHell immediately.

I'm sure the hosts thought that this was cute and breezy.  Maybe it is, but I don't like it.  I'm coming to your party to celebrate with you, not to try to impress people.  And it gives zero information about what guests are actually supposed to wear (and the venue is a really neutral one -- not like a party barn or public park pavillion on the one hand or fancy downtown hotel or country club on the other that would give a clue).  Probably they mean no super casual clothes and maybe no jeans, but after that, it really could mean anything from good dressy casual to blingy club wear to elegant party clothes; probably not long gowns and tuxedos.  But I'm just guessing.

I suppose that if I were going, I would ask the hosts "What are we wearing?"  But as that usually that just gets you, "Oh, just anything you like!!" (which people also seem to consider charmingly uncontrolling, ignoring the fact that someone is clearly trying to get some actual information and guidance from them so they can feel confident that they will be dressed properly), I'd be more likely just to wear something very simple that could span a wide range of dressiness (probably that's one reason little black dresses are so popular).  Too bad, because people might have fantastic outfits to wear that would be perfect, but they don't want to take the risk in case they are guessing wrong.

In my opinion, hosts aren't doing themselves any favors by having their parties start out with many of the guests feeling uncomfortable worrying that they are dressed too dressy or not dressy enough. 


WillyNilly

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 7490
  • Mmmmm, food
    • The World as I Taste It
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2013, 04:36:14 PM »
This is why I collect cocktail purses and big statement necklaces.  Paired with a black cocktail dress (LBD) and a warm smile, its pretty much always appropriate.

I would think a NY Bat Mitzvah with a "dress to impress" dress code would be men in suits (not tuxes, but no open collars either, at least not for adult men) and women in cocktail dresses.

gellchom

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2139
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2013, 05:51:20 PM »
Here in Ohio, my guess would be at least one tick down from that -- few men in suits, some in sport jackets with ties, some with nice open shirts or sweaters (in fact, most of the men from my side of town would be in jackets, the men from the northeast suburbs in sweaters).  Women totally confused, some in party dresses, some in slacks and sweaters, some in between (e.g. LBD with statement necklace or dressy slacks and top with heels), many feeling "wrong."

It's easy enough to find something safe to wear that will be appropriate no matter what (those treasured outfits that my mom and I call our "uniforms.")  But it's nice to wear those more interesting outfits sometimes, too, and that's risky if the hosts aren't clear on the invitation.

Anyway, I don't much like the tone of the wording, which kind of brings to mind showing off and competing (how very un-midwestern! :)).  I'd use "dress to impress" for an article about how to dress for a job interview, but it's not something I'd say to my guests.

peaches

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 765
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2013, 06:57:23 PM »
I'm not crazy about it.

It sounds a bit like an admonishment to me (as though you wouldn't come nicely dressed if you weren't reminded).

I think people are in murky territory when they want to convey something less dressy than "cocktail attire", but not really casual. That's when these cutesy phrases come into play.

I've also seen the word Festive used for parties. This generally means to dress up, but nothing is specifically required or prohibited.

Probably the best thing to go by is how people usually dress for this kind of occasion where you live. 

Or ask the hosts for examples of what people will be wearing (and pin them down!).


Aeris

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 9638
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2013, 07:06:36 PM »
Weren't you upset not too long ago about an invitation dress code that was too specific, and therefore offended you? Now this dress code is not specific enough, and therefore offends you? It seems quite difficult to get it just right.

I don't see the big deal. It sounds like it means 'fun party dresses'. I imagine the 7th graders involved have a sense of what it means, and a million years ago when I was in middle school the bar/bat mitzvah dress codes were definitely targeting the youngster invitees much more than the adults.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2013, 07:10:09 PM by Aeris »

Yvaine

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 8787
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2013, 07:21:23 PM »
I'd go cocktail and sparkly.

auntmeegs

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 3196
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2013, 08:02:08 PM »
Weren't you upset not too long ago about an invitation dress code that was too specific, and therefore offended you? Now this dress code is not specific enough, and therefore offends you? It seems quite difficult to get it just right.

I don't see the big deal. It sounds like it means 'fun party dresses'. I imagine the 7th graders involved have a sense of what it means, and a million years ago when I was in middle school the bar/bat mitzvah dress codes were definitely targeting the youngster invitees much more than the adults.

POD.  I don't get where the mystery is.  It surprises me that there seems to be so much confusion on how to dress for certain events.

gramma dishes

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 8046
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2013, 09:39:18 PM »
What does LBD mean?

gellchom

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2139
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2013, 09:44:11 PM »
Weren't you upset not too long ago about an invitation dress code that was too specific, and therefore offended you? Now this dress code is not specific enough, and therefore offends you? It seems quite difficult to get it just right.

I don't see the big deal. It sounds like it means 'fun party dresses'. I imagine the 7th graders involved have a sense of what it means, and a million years ago when I was in middle school the bar/bat mitzvah dress codes were definitely targeting the youngster invitees much more than the adults.

POD.  I don't get where the mystery is.  It surprises me that there seems to be so much confusion on how to dress for certain events.

:) I'm not "upset" by either of the invitations!  Or offended, or annoyed, or anything else. 

I just posted, on both occasions, because this is a topic that comes up from time to time.  People who are hosting events and are wondering how to word invitations come here looking for discussions on the subject.  People tell them how things would look/sound to them and share their experiences.  Look how often people ask things like "what us the proper way to ask for cash?"  That one has very little difference of opinion.  But there are other subjects, like cash bars or mothers hosting showers, that elicit conflicting responses.  It's helpful when planning to hear points of view we never would have guessed. 

In this case, someone thinking, "The usual attire words are so dull - let's get creative!!  People will love it!" will learn that not all their guests will, and for reasons they didn't anticipate.  As I thought I wrote above, it's not just the lack of clarity I don't care for, it's also the attitude that peaches described so well.  As to any confusion, I do know how to navigate that.  But inexperienced guests might not and may be worried that they will go wrong. I would think most hosts would like to avoid that. 

Learning from each other's experiences and perspectives is what makes this forum so useful and interesting.  I know I've found it very valuable many times.

P.s.  LBD = little black dress 


gramma dishes

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 8046
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2013, 09:49:02 PM »

P.s.  LBD = little black dress

Oh ... *sound of head smack in the background* :-[ 

I should have known that.  Thank you!   

Surianne

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 10783
    • Prince ShimmerShine Moondream's Blogging Adventure
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2013, 10:36:16 PM »
I personally think my plaid flannel pyjamas are extremely impressive in their comfiness, so the wording on this invitation would please me greatly.

kareng57

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 12253
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2013, 10:48:19 PM »
Weren't you upset not too long ago about an invitation dress code that was too specific, and therefore offended you? Now this dress code is not specific enough, and therefore offends you? It seems quite difficult to get it just right.

I don't see the big deal. It sounds like it means 'fun party dresses'. I imagine the 7th graders involved have a sense of what it means, and a million years ago when I was in middle school the bar/bat mitzvah dress codes were definitely targeting the youngster invitees much more than the adults.

POD.  I don't get where the mystery is.  It surprises me that there seems to be so much confusion on how to dress for certain events.

:) I'm not "upset" by either of the invitations!  Or offended, or annoyed, or anything else. 

I just posted, on both occasions, because this is a topic that comes up from time to time.  People who are hosting events and are wondering how to word invitations come here looking for discussions on the subject.  People tell them how things would look/sound to them and share their experiences.  Look how often people ask things like "what us the proper way to ask for cash?"  That one has very little difference of opinion.  But there are other subjects, like cash bars or mothers hosting showers, that elicit conflicting responses.  It's helpful when planning to hear points of view we never would have guessed. 

In this case, someone thinking, "The usual attire words are so dull - let's get creative!!  People will love it!" will learn that not all their guests will, and for reasons they didn't anticipate.  As I thought I wrote above, it's not just the lack of clarity I don't care for, it's also the attitude that peaches described so well.  As to any confusion, I do know how to navigate that.  But inexperienced guests might not and may be worried that they will go wrong. I would think most hosts would like to avoid that. 

Learning from each other's experiences and perspectives is what makes this forum so useful and interesting.  I know I've found it very valuable many times.

P.s.  LBD = little black dress


Well, I have to agree with Aeris - you really did seem to be pretty annoyed, last time - you figured that the implication was that guests would not know to not wear jeans.

Again, things are a lot more multicultural these days.  20 or 30 years ago I would wager that most guests at a Bar or Bat Mitzvah would have been Jewish themselves and would have known the correct attire.  While I agree that it's possible to read too much into "dress to impress!" my impression would be that this would mean jackets (not necessarily suits) for men and a nice dress or pants/dressy top for women.

Certainly they could have put "semi formal" on the invitation, but that implies full suits for men.  Far fewer men these days own suits, as opposed to men a generation or two ago (and yes, I realize that this is regional).  So that could have resulted in many "no" responses - especially in today's economy.  A lot of men are not going to want to invest in a suit when they might not wear it again for years.

LilacRosey

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 126
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2013, 10:53:06 PM »
I think it means dressy but I wouldn't wear pajamas as someone else said. Why would anyone where pajamas to a party!? Unless it was pajama party but I've only seen those in movies. Where a pretty dress or a cute suit!, LilacRosey

blarg314

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 8447
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #13 on: February 09, 2013, 12:17:04 AM »

I would interpret it as either "Dress up" or "Wear something flashy" but I wouldn't be sure which.

If I were being evil, I'd not that a *positive* impression wasn't specified.  That opens it up to all sorts of outfits, or lack thereof.

LadyR

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 985
    • Musings of A Pinterest Mom
Re: s/o of "No ties, No jeans" -- "Dress to Impress!"
« Reply #14 on: February 11, 2013, 03:35:20 PM »
I would assume night on the town appropriate clothes.