A Rakish Guide to Dressing for Smart Outdoor Events

Whether you’re at the Melbourne Cup or an elegant wedding in Lake Como, ensure you’re informed with our guide to rakish dressing for smart outdoor events.

With fashionable affairs of the season just around the corner - Cheltenham being the first 

Case in point is the aforementioned Melbourne Cup Carnival. Whether you have personally experienced the high-spirited affair or have attended an event of similar ilk (think Royal Ascot), dressing for the occasion is imperative.

As we all know, the menacing dress code regulation can often be somewhat confusing, with gents often seen confounding many a dress code.

As such, here is our Rakish guide to dressing for smart outdoor events.

The Jacket

One of the centrepiece items that can make or break an outfit, the jacket you sport should be thoroughly considered.

Invariably, a sports coat of some sort will suffice. For the cooler months, consider a tweed or heavy wool number that will provide warmth whilst still holding its own in the style department. Should you be heading into a warmer climate, a linen option will almost always work.

Depending on the nature of the event, consider an unstructured or structured make. Play with pattern and fabrics should you like to test the waters of your style game; subtle checks in wool/silk, cotton twill, hopsack weaves and earth-tone linens are fantastic options for almost any gent to consider.

Single or double breasted variations are also worthy contenders. Should your event mark somewhat of a fancier occasion, opt for a double breasted silhouette. A three-roll-two jacket, unstructured, will perpetually be a source of ‘cool’ that is surefire to get you through a number of events and occasions henceforth.

The Pant

Should you wish to make a stylish statement, consider tonal dressing, which centres around the pant. This look can be is smart, sophisticated and chic. Nothing makes more of an impact than a well made jacket paired with the perfect set of trousers.

Smart-casual trousers are not a one-off purchase, either - nor should they be. Such trousers can be dressed up or down, and are guaranteed to provide its wearer comfort, style and versatility for years to come.

For casual do’s, consider corduroy or cotton twill - two styles that will fair well all-year round. For a smarter affair, consider a high-waisted number in wool or a wool-linen blend with side adjusters. Cuff the hem, ensuring it’s ‘kissing’ the tongue of your shoe, and you’re well on your way to nailing the smart outdoor dress code.

We’re all for earthy tones of beige, cream, stone, brown, terracotta and olive-greens, which appeal year-round.

The Shoe

Again, event-dependant, the shoe you wear will dictate the look you’re trying to achieve. Attending a cocktail outdoor wedding? Consider an Oxford in a dark brown hue. Braving for a sweltering day at the races? You’re going to want to adopt a pair of penny or tassel loafers in brown, black, navy or tan.

For almost all smart outdoor events, however, you can’t fault a pair of leather Brogues. Be it a tan, black or brown with a semi, half or full Brogue, this is a classic style that will perennially stand the test of time - and will offer an array of assistance when looking to pair the perfect shoe with the perfect outfit.

It’s a given that no matter the shoe style you choose to adopt, ensure it is looking tip-top with a good polish and shine.


Your outfit is all but complete without the accompaniment of a thoughtful accessory. When talking about smart outdoor events, a tie in a subtle pattern will not go astray when looking to finalise a look, as would a pocket chief to complement.

For cocktail dress codes, almost always will you find us sporting a tie - it’s the one accessory that will pick you apart from the hordes in similar suiting styles, should that be the case.

Should you be attending the Melbourne Cup Carnival, a lapel pin is almost imperative; a blue cornflower for Derby Day, yellow rose for the Melbourne Cup, pink rose for ladies’ Oaks Day, and a red rose for Stakes Day.