January 2, 2019

What is Smart Casual?

When invited to an event or establishment with a Smart Casual dress code, we recommend that you use this handy guide to ensure you’re acceptably dressed:


Shoes, boots and loafers are what you should be thinking about here and the range of options is quite wide. Most fashion brands will have a range of soft leather shoes that are perfect for a smart casual dress code, and not as formal as shoes you might wear in an office or to an evening-wear event. Brogues and loafers are always IN, and are the most stylish thing to wear for this dress code. Never ever wear trainers (sneakers/gym shoes/walking shoes) – it’s the biggest no-no!

***Christian English Loves: Hugo Boss, Prada, Barkers, Crockett & Jones, Gucci, Saint Crispins



Jeans totally work for Smart Casual and are definitely ‘permitted’ within this dress code. It’s the most common question asked about ‘Smart Casual’ but make sure they’re tailored, clean and not torn. Also consider chinos, a smart pair of trousers, (or tailored shorts if the event is outside and expressly permitted by the event organizer). Women should wear a mid length dress or skirt. Gym wear and cargo pants are a definite no-go for Smart Cas.

***Christian English Loves: 7forallmankind, Diesel, Levis, Guess, DSquared2



This is the most flexible option. A shirt or polo shirt is clearly the best idea – i.e. something with a collar. But on rare occasions, we really like the idea of wearing a smart, collarless T-shirt. You can accessorise with a stylish scarf or layer with a jumper, but it’s important to cover your neckline if you do choose the t-shirt option. Keep your blazer, scarf or jumper ON, and check with your event organizer or establishment before attending. If in doubt always wear a collar.  Ladies, you can wear a sleeveless dress but cover your shoulders with a shawl or blazer.

***Christian English says: Talk to us about our bespoke shirts


Over Covering

There’s nothing quite as good as a tailor-made blazer to finish the Smart Casual look for a man or a woman. A stylish jacket can also work for both sexes but overcoats do not count. If wearing an overcoat (during winter or cold weather) make sure to have a blazer or light jacket underneath.   Cardigans should be avoided.

***Christian English says: Talk to us about our range of bespoke blazers and fabrics.



Smart Casual is the most vague of all the dress codes. In general, if you look clean, tidy and non-sporty, you’ll be fine. Most organisers or establishments will have their own description on what it actually means so if you have any doubts, call and get clarity on their specific requirements.


For your Smart Casual Style Consultation, contact us at 0203 862 6987 or book at www.christianenglish.co.uk/book-consultation