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Author Topic: Looking for advice on military retirement ceremony  (Read 11942 times)

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Looking for advice on military retirement ceremony
« on: April 21, 2011, 08:08:20 PM »
Hello e-hellions.  I am looking for advice on what to wear to an upcoming naval retirement ceremony for one of my husbands friends.  There are specified dress codes for the military....uniform of the day and service dress blues for service members, but nothing listed for civilians.  If it makes a difference the gentleman retiring is an officer, although not a terribly high ranking one.  Is this a pantsuit occaison or skirt and heels occassion?  Does it make any difference that the ceremony will be held on a museum ship?

Anything else I should expect to do or not do?  Thanks for your help.....I want to make a good impression!


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Re: Looking for advice on military retirement ceremony
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2011, 08:15:42 PM »
I would go with the skirt and heels. Someone else may have a different take, but the military (to me, at least) is pretty conservative about things like that.


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Re: Looking for advice on military retirement ceremony
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2011, 08:47:42 PM »
The military is conservative, but guests have a lot more leeway. You can take your cue from the uniforms listed for the military personnel--dress blues are on the formal side. So what you wear should be on the formal side. The time of day will also factor in--is it in the morning or afternoon or evening? Morning or afternoon, I'd say a dressy Sunday-type outfit would work. Or a basic little black dress. Evening, you'd need more formal evening attire.

Honestly, I think you can get away with a dressier pantsuit, as opposed to a tailored one that shrieks "I'm all business!" It might be easier to get around the ship in, if they give a tour at any point in the proceedings.

If you know the retiree's wife at all (if he's married), can you call her and ask for suggestions?
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


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Re: Looking for advice on military retirement ceremony
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2011, 09:49:08 PM »
When my dad retired from the Army as an O6, my mom and I wore skirts and jackets (not suits, per se, but navy blue skirts w/ jackets of a print material).  My brother wore khakis, shirt, tie, and sport coat.  I think -- bro may have put on a suit.  Now, it was our own father, but I believe that was pretty much the dress of the day.  For his dinner that night it was cocktail attire/dress mess.

But, like the OPs wrote, go with what the invitation listed.  If it's service dress blues, that's not as formal, and you probably could go with a dressy pantsuit as a civilian.

ETA:  Uniform of the day that day was BDU's (camouflage uniform) so my dad and all others there were in that uniform during the ceremony, but in dress mess/tuxedo equivalent for the dinner that night.  BDU's definitely don't look formal!  :)


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Re: Looking for advice on military retirement ceremony
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2011, 10:00:40 PM »
I would suggest "nice church clothes".


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Re: Looking for advice on military retirement ceremony
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2011, 09:15:04 AM »
Thanks everyone.  It's a friday afternoon ceremony, so I do expect to see quite a few of the new Navy style BDU's.  I just wasn't sure weather to err on the side of conservative with a skirted suit or if a pantsuit would do it.  Although in my case it's more of a business suit.  I know it's definitley a shirt and tie occaisson for the hubby.  My other half works as a civillian for the Navy, so not out of the realm of reason that he would have business with the military types who are represented I will probably aim more for the business-like and conservative end of the spectrum.