Have you ever been invited to an event and wondered if you can re-wear a dress from your closet? Do you have a fabulous gala gown just collecting dust in your closet that you would love to wear to another gala but you are not sure if it is OK to rewear a formal dress? We have been programmed over the years to never be caught wearing the same special occasion dress twice. Therefore, it can be difficult to know what to do with a formal dress hanging in our closets!
Special events are just that; special. So we all have this subconscious feeling inside which tells us we need a special, new dress for the occasion. While shopping for a new gala gown, or cocktail dress, is a lot of fun, it can also add up! Think about how much you spend each time you attend an event. Could that money go towards a fabulous designer bag you can wear on a daily basis? Or maybe that money could buy an entire new summer wardrobe, or pay for a trip to Hawaii. Perhaps the money could be used for a new washing machine. (I know boring, but reality)
Saving money, and still making a special event feel special, is easier than you think! You can absolutely re-wear a special occasion dress, gala gown, or cocktail dress; again, and again, and again! The only rule of thumb is to never wear the same dress, to the same event, twice. That silver cocktail dress you wore to your friend’s party last week? You can’t wear it with that group of people again, but you can easily wear it to the upcoming charity event you are attending, and then your second cousin’s Friday night wedding. Get the idea?
While it seems to be a simple thing to be able to wear a dress over, and over, there is one easy way to remember where you have worn each dress. I easily forget where I wore a dress; especially if it hangs in my closet for two or three years. Since formal attire trends don’t change often, you can hold on to a dress for several years and continually re-wear it. Love that!
I have one simple system I use to help me keep track of where, and when, and with who, I wore a dress. In order to keep track of where my dress has been, I make hang-tags which I keep on the hangers of my dresses while they hang in my closet. This tells me when I wore a dress, which group of people I wore it with, and to which event it attended. This enables me to get many wears out of a cocktail dress, gala gown, or party dress without getting caught in the same dress twice, with the same group of people.
Here are the steps for making your own hangtags! You can see what they should look like in the photos below.
- Buy a package of index cards.
- Use a hole punch on the end of one index card to make a hole about a quarter-inch from the top. Hold the index card vertically when you punch the hole so that the hole is on one of the short ends of the card, not the long end
- Using scissors, cut a straight line from the end of the card to the hole.
- Make three columns on the card and label them “Date,” “Event,” and “Group.”
- Fill in the card with the event information from the place you wore it.
- Hang the card on the hanger; and voila! You have a record of where. and when, and with whom, you wore each gala gown, cocktail dress, and party dress!
In addition to a special occasion dress, you are likely to own special occasion shoes, and clutches. These can be re-worn over, and over, and over again. If you have a clutch, or a pair of shoes which are kitschy, they will have a shelf life and should be labelled, so that they are never re-worn to the same event twice. If you tend to own classic formal accessories, like me, then you can easily re-wear them to the same event, and with the same group of people.
Pictured: Tom Ford formal pumps
When it comes to formal accessories, I recommend owning three formal clutches or mini-bags, one in black, one in silver, and one in gold. I also recommend owning three pairs of formal shoes, one pair in black, one in silver, and one in gold. My black satin mini bag is fifteen years old, yet every-time I wear it, the bag looks fresh and new. Look for formal accessories which are classic and can be used over, and over. You will save a ton of money over time. Besides, when you attend an event, everyone is looking at your dress, not your shoes or bag. #FunFact
There you have it! It is OK to re-wear a formal dress to another event as long as you are keeping track of where you wore it before. Do you have a system to keep track of where you wore your gowns? If so, please share in the comments below!
Thanks for stopping by, and enjoy saving money by re-wearing your formal gowns, cocktail dress, and party ensembles!