It’s time to bring back your going out clothes
What to wear to feel like you're dressed to go out and have some good old fashioned fun
Thesis: Getting dressed to look like you’re going out is coming back in fashion.
What do you mean getting dressed to like you’re going out? Basically getting dressed in clothes you’d want to wear to go to the club or ~a new downtown hot spot~ where the ceilings are high, moody music plays, and the food has foam on it.
I think those places died with Sex and the City but I get what you mean. So what constitutes going out clothes? In order for a look to fall into the category of going out, it has to exude some kind of sex appeal — and this can be interpreted in myriad ways because, you know, what you find sexy I might not, and vice versa, and crossways. So figure that a going out look will most likely maintain one of the following criteria:
the color black
some element of tightness
skin exposure or shiny fabric — like brocade or sequin or crystal embellishment. Maybe it will include all!
But remember: just 1-2 of the above descriptors is enough to ensure you’ve got it.
Does a going-out look have to be worn exclusively to go out at night? Nah. You were right: Sex and the City is dead and getting dressed to fill one specific archetype so intensely doesn’t work for the multi-hyphen ways of the current world — and plus: part of what makes the return of such a specific style of dress fun is almost always how you choose to fuck with it.
The idea is that you could wear it to go dancing
Or just across the street to grab tampons.
Does this mean tees and button-downs and comfort pants are out?: Lol, what? No! You need all of these items to counter the going-out pieces lest you look too much like One Finite Thing. Use your button-down as a shacket in fact to keep warm when you’re indoors in America, land of the aggressive A.C.
Or your huge pants to offset your sequins.
Why’s this happening now? We’ve approached the eye of y2k’s style storm and a key pillar of that necessitates the presence of at least one thing that Tara Reid, or better yet: Paris Hilton would have wanted to wear.
But what if I don’t want to dress like Tara Reid? Well, see this is the thing about style and trends — even if, more broadly speaking, you don’t plan to or want to participate in the resurgence of a trend, when a new vibe sweeps through the zeitgeist, there is always a ripple effect that impacts even your most intimately beloved brands. See: this halter top from The Row. I’m using The Row as a reference because the brand is the furthest thing I can think of from style stars of the early aughts.
Unless you consider that like, MK and A were style stars of the early aughts too. So much can be gleaned from evolution.
Another example that predates the anterior and might appeal to you better because it has aged differently: Destiny’s Child!!!
So I can still look like me/a more desirable version of me and wear a going-out look? Yes! The point is always to look (or really feel) like you, even when taking a marginal risk. It’s the blessing and beauty and bounty of style.
How do I wear the trend? The key thing here is that the trend items are supposed to work with the clothes you already have.
Every few years or so, as the trends slowly tweak and we buy into new fashion over the seasons, the shapes of our respective wardrobes start to shift and often we don’t even realize it until suddenly, items we’ve never had before slowly start to make sense. A going-out top will be great with many ilk of pants: pajama, trouser, cotton-voile, or jeans.
Going out shorts/skirts will be great with your classic button-downs or most casual t-shirts.
What’s the best shape to try? For tops: to my previous point about The Row, I’m pretty into halter tops — they have surprised me the most as far as versatility goes bc they work with almost all the contents of my current wardrobe (trouser pants, hot pants, fringe jackets, full skirts).
I do also like a top with boob cups.
And the ones with wild open backs.
You’ll probably find the best ones on MyTheresa or SSENSE (rawr). Both commerce platforms offer the most extensive range of non “quiet” clothes that wreak fun.
Bottoms: If you prefer covering up on top and don’t mind having your legs out, micro shorts/mini skirts are a great option for the bottom. They pair well with button-downs or classic T-shirts.
And because the shirt you’re wearing covers you up on top/leans more masculine, it reflects off high heels in a tasteful way.
They’re also niche, so bermuda shorts will take you far too. And perhaps afford you more flexibility in the way of shoes.
The theory of exposed variables
The three variables you’re playing with re: exposed skin are (1) your collarbones,(2) your thighs to about knee-length, and (3) your toes. The idea is that you won’t want to show all three at once. Most of the time, you’re picking one to flaunt, but it can absolutely be two too tu.
If you’re wearing heels and a short bottom, my recommendation is almost always to make sure most of your chest is covered.
The exception to this rule is when you’re wearing shoes that are closed-toe (see: the halter top with denim shorts and ballet flats way above).
Another example that plays with different proportions — covering thigh and knee would be something like this:
Recently, I wore this to a birthday that turned into a dance party:
It’s an example of revealing one of the three variables — I chose to articulate my collarbones but cover my legs and toes. It turned out pretty well, and reminds me, actually, that tube tops are fair game as going out garb too. And they make a great case as the inside of a shacket/trousers look. Maybe the same look, in fact, reimagined for the day.
I’m out of things to say on this topic, but do you have any questions?
I’m all ears and hope you had a nice 4th. See you in da club,