Summer may be the “socially acceptable” season for wearing white clothing and accessories, but we know that the “no white after Labor Day” rule is meant to be broken. And although Labor Day Weekend tends to be the time for head-to-toe white dress codes (old habits die hard), you can still wear these outfits anytime of year.
Then comes the hard part: How exactly do you put together an all-white party outfit? With just one color to choose from, it’s actually quite simple. But, the possibilities are limitless, which can also make the task quite daunting. According to stylist and creative consultant Natalie Cantell, “There’s nothing like styling an all-white look (or choosing paint for a white wall) to understand what people mean by ‘simplexity.’ If it’s feeling a little off, it can be tough to put your finger on what’s not working — but when it’s right, there’s nothing better.”
Luckily, there is plenty of inspiration to help. Ahead, check out 16 ways to style an all-white party outfit, plus more pro tips from Cantell.
Oversized Summer Suiting
We can’t remember the last time Jennifer Lopez wasn’t on an outfit mood board, and her easy breezy white-on-white oversized suit is at the top of our list when it comes to all-white party outfit inspo. Paired with a classic V-neck tee, silver platform pumps, and dazzling diamond earrings, Lopez proves that wearing all white doesn’t have to be taken too seriously. Plus, a summer suit is a great way to stand out among a sea of little white dresses, right?
One and Done
If the all-white party isn’t an all-day affair, we recommend following in Kristen Davis’s footsteps with a transitional day-to-night look. An office-appropriate white dress (we’re partial to shirt dresses) easily goes from business to pleasure.
Keep your accessories simple in a neutral hue, and just swap your work tote for a simple white clutch. Bonus points for a wear-everywhere sparkling tennis bracelet or necklace — Charlotte York Goldenblatt would never leave home without one.
Julianne Hough has been spotted in so many all-white outfits that it was hard to choose just one. Her fun, fringey look by Khaite stands out not only for its fun fabric but also for Hough’s A+ accessorizing. Pairing black accessories — including sheer tights — with this end-of-summer attire demonstrates the versatility of white pieces in any wardrobe. “I love this look, which isn’t surprising because I love Khaite and fringing is still having a moment,” shares Cantell. “The black accessories feel trans-seasonal and perfect for a late-summer event on a cloudy day (in fact, an oversized blazer would only make this more excellent).”
Have Fun with Fabric
From her iconic wedding pantsuit to artfully designed dances and exhibitions, Solange never shies away from an opportunity to wear the hue. She keeps it interesting, too: We love the shiny velour asymmetrical dress she wore in November (!), paired with silver pumps and a mini metallic clutch. A bit of silvery eyeshadow makes this star look even more ethereal.
The Little White Dress
Influencer and FIT student Kate Bartlett nails the all-white outfit aesthetic in a lacy little white dress by Michael Kors. Paired with strappy lace-up sandals and a white clutch, Bartlett makes the look her own with the addition of a twice-wrapped gold chain belt. Although it's her accessories that make the entire look, we must admit: If you have no idea where to start with your all-white party look, a little white dress is never out of place.
Peloton instructor Ally Love would never let us forget that any outfit for an all-white party needs to take the word “party” into consideration just as seriously. “You really need the video of Ally moving in this PatBo dress to do it justice,” shares Cantell. Bring a little something extra to the dance floor with gemstones, like the pearl embellishments and clutch shown here. Or, if you can’t find an outfit that comes covered in jewels already, take the DIY route and layer up with loads of long pearl necklaces, bubbly bracelets, and fun cocktail rings.
Mix and Match
Fashion editor and trend forecaster Kendall Becker knows a thing or two about building a wardrobe full of pieces with purpose. So, when the weather for your white party is unpredictable, it’s a great time to mix and match your faves, even if they’re typically worn in different seasons. Try styling a summery crochet top or dress with wintry white accessories, like creamy leather boots and a blazer. And don’t forget a fun metallic handbag and pearl and gold jewelry to match. Cantell’s pro-tip: Contrasting dramatically different fabrics and textures is a great hack to making sure a layered white look feels intentional, rather than mismatched.
A Short Sundress
Margaret Qualley has been seen wearing white a lot, even when she’s not walking down the aisle. A simple spaghetti-strap minidress (okay fine, this is Chanel), worn with white leather loafers exudes a certain je ne sais quoi that is perfectly fit for a Dîner en Blanc, oui? Oui.
If an invitation to a white party has you feeling a bit extra, then we strongly suggest looking to influencer Leonie Hanne for your outfit inspiration. Break out that bedazzled, nearly nude dress you’ve been dying to wear (bonus points for pearls and diamonds over colored stone accents as seen on the PatBo design above) and accessorize with a simple white clutch and pumps. In a sea of like-colored looks, you’re bound to shine.
We love how fashion editor Miki Cheung went all in on the accessories for this party-approved look. Spice up a shirt dress with an array of metallics from head to toe. Gold, silver, pearl — they’re all fair game. Cantell’s recommendation? “Wearing all one color can be a great excuse to accessorize and make a piece feel your own — the addition of an Hermès belt makes this relaxed-fit Dorothee Schumacher dress feel so completely different, I almost didn’t recognize it.”
Influencer and model Mary Leest makes the most of seasonal staples by styling a flowy white ruched with luxe leather boots. What makes this outfit, however, is her moody dark lip. It’s giving big “spooky season ahead” vibes in the most end-of-summer chic way.
Huma Abedin shows that even in the depths of winter, white can be a power color. While a winter white party is decidedly different from the typical end-of-summer event, the style advice remains one and the same: Just have fun with it. And no, your accessories do not need to be entirely white either, as long as they enhance the overall outfit aesthetic.
A Marilyn Monroe Moment
An all-white party outfit should always, always be fun, like Priyanka Chopra Jonas’s look here. Complete with modern cat-eye shades, silver hoop earrings, and leather boots, she looks like a modern-day Marilyn Monroe.
Zendaya’s Law Roach-styled looks never miss, but the reworked vintage Prada SS1993 bralette with star cutouts and floor-grazing skirt worn at the 54th NAACP Image Awards is certainly a career standout. As Cantell notes, “Everything about this is giving ‘90s VMAs red carpet.” Although we don’t recommend taking sewing shears to a designer vintage gem, we must admit that the eye-catching cut-outs make this all-white ensemble feel fresh. Just keep a white jacket or oversized blazer handy for when the sun goes down.
Extra All Over
Friendly reminder that the best outfits are creative ones. If you’re already the owner of a white cape, catsuit, and headband, you can pretty much recreate Anya Taylor Joy’s over-the-top extra look. So go ahead, and don’t be afraid to go all out.
One of the most fun parts of attending an all-white party is seeing how everyone interprets the dress code differently. If your personal style leans more boho, take a cue from Sienna Miller and pair a frilly white dress with bold accessories and a punchy red lip.
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