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Black tie events – all you need to know

So, you’ve received an invitation to a black tie event and now you’re wondering what to wear and what is involved? You have landed in the right place. We’re giving you the low-down on everything you need to know about a black tie event, including the all-important dress code.

What is a black tie event?

A black tie event is an evening occasion which originates from British and American conventions. It’s all about looking your best and dressing to impress. For centuries, dressing up for evening events has been popular, but black tie events didn’t come into force until the Edwardian era. This was when the default look for men in the evening was a waistcoat and black bow tie with a dinner jacket.

Black tie event dress code

Black tie is a formal dress code that means different things for men and women. There are variations to what people think is deemed a true black tie outfit, especially for a man, so with that in mind, we’ll give you some tips on how to master this popular evening dress code.

For men

  • Black dinner jacket, think of the classic Tuxedo style
  • Matching suit trousers that reach all the way down to your shoes
  • Crisp, white shirt. A wing collar is the more traditional choice, but you can also opt for a standard collar if you wish
  • Bow tie. If you’re not quite sure how to tie it yourself, opt for a clip-on.
  • Matching waistcoat – this is optional but looks stylish
  • Black shoes that complement the rest of your look, preferably with a high shine

Of course, these ‘rules’ can be loosely followed. You can always go for a dark navy suit, or a slightly different fabric such as velvet. It’s also popular in America to opt for a white dinner jacket.

For women

  • Knee or full-length dress
  • Trousers are also an acceptable option; many recommend a palazzo cut
  • Wear any colour you wish, for women there is no strict rule to wear black
  • Almost all jewellery is appropriate

Again, these rules can be followed how you see fit. After all, we all have our own unique style.

Why hold a black tie event?

Black tie events are often a popular choice for formal dinner parties, corporate events, awards ceremonies and any formal celebration. However, just because the party is deemed formal, doesn’t mean it can’t be fun. You want your guests to have a good time, so it’s important to think about entertainment and consider novelty extras such as a photo booth, themed cocktails or goody bags.

Black tie event venue in London

Here at The Grubstreet Author, our luxurious spaces can be fully customised for your black tie event. Full of character and rich in history, our event venue is situated on what was once the notorious Grubstreet, in an area that was renowned for bohemian writers and industrial print houses, which have provided inspiration to the venue styling.

Whether you want to host an exclusive private dining event, a corporate celebration or an awards ceremony, we have three spaces with unique character and features. Each room has been curated to perfectly meet the needs of a black tie event, with advanced audio visual and complimentary Wi-Fi for all guests.

We also have a team of chefs and event planners to help create delicious, tailored menus, as well as source a whole host of eye-catching, exciting props. Alongside access to a built in DAD PA system, coloured LED lighting, electronic signage and a fully working 48-capacity cinema auditorium, we can create a unique black-tie event in London that your guests won’t forget.

Book your black tie event today

If you would like to find out more about hosting your black tie event at The Grubstreet Author, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.