Here’s What to Wear to This Year’s Best of Philly Party

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Best of Philly 2017, Lafayette Hill Studios Photography

The annual Best of Philly Soirée is almost here, and we can hardly wait to celebrate all of the most astounding, wonderful, and zany things about our city with you. Since the party is fast approaching (it’s Thursday, August 2nd for those just catching up) that also means it’s high time to start thinking about the most important question: what are you going to wear? If you haven’t figured it out yet, don’t worry: we haven’t either. The office is currently flurrying with snippets of discussions re: chic jumpsuits and sultry green dresses and glam tulle skirts and the ever-present question: “Can I pull this off?”

To help you — and ourselves — out, we’ve put together a list of what you need to know about what to wear. The party is at Dilworth Park, which presents its own set of style challenges. (Read: It’s damn hot outside.) But, the elements can easily be overcome with our handy fashion guide. Below, our recommendations to help you have your best, most Philadelphia, night ever.


Yes, you look great in that LBD. But so does everyone else. Instead of blending in, wear something vibrant and bright to stand out. It’s the best way to embrace the chaotic fun of an outdoor celebration of all things Philadelphia in the dog days of summer. If you’re wearing black — we get it, we love black everything, too — opt for some bold accessories like statement earrings or a sparkly belt to help you stand out from the crowd.

2. Go hands free.

I don’t care how cute your Fendi bag is. When it comes to serious partying, you need to prize efficiency over (or at least right along with) fashion. To that end, opt for a crossbody bag or a clutch that neatly tucks under your arm, so that can nosh on all the snacks and drink all the beverages unencumbered. You’re welcome.

3. Skip white tonight.

The reasons for this are numerous and grave. 1) Appetizers with dipping sauces  2.) RED WINE.  3.) Strong possibility of late night fountain dancing. (Yes, like the opening credits to Friends. And yes, they were all wearing white in that scene, but we all know that was a mistake.)

4. Dress for the temps.

It’s August, and outdoors, so you can expect some heat. (Read: This is not the time for a floor-length ballgown.) A lightweight maxi dress will do nicely, but otherwise stick to something breathable but elegant: a blouse and shimmery skirt, a shift dress with see-through sleeves, a fun caftan, a midi skirt and top. Think upscale summer cocktails and dancing, not the red carpet.

5. Accessorize with abandon.

We’re big fans of accessories: playful sculptural earrings, big bauble rings, layers of necklaces. Upping your jewelry and accessory game can add a powerful punch to even a standby outfit you plucked from your closet at the last second. Also, see number one for how the right accents can play up even a drab black dress.

6. For the guys: Look sharp, but loosen up.

This is a cocktail soirée, so you want to look dapper, but you don’t need to look like you’re headed into the board room. Think summer on your yacht. (Which you own, obviously.) Play around with upscale looks by rocking a linen jacket, ditching your tie, and opening the top button of a collared shirt. Or don a nice pair of chinos and a patterned button-down styled in a French tuck, a la Tan France. Just skip the jeans tonight.

7. Break out your bougiest sunnies.

The party starts before the sun goes down, so don’t forget to slide your most luxe shades into a pocket or bag. You’ll need them for cool-spotting, anyway.

8. Think chunky heels.

Stilettos are glamorous as hell, but when you’re dancing (and walking in the grass) you’ll be happy you opted for a wider base. If you want to skip height altogether, try some fun espadrilles or low strappy sandals.

9. Embrace power pants.

Don’t need to shy away from pants for this party (or a fierce jumpsuit — a perfect way to make a statement). Flowing, high-waisted palazzo pants are definitely in right now. Pair them with a slightly tighter-fitting top to create a breezy, bohemian summer look.

10. Pick the look that makes you happiest.

As much as we love dispensing rosy pearls of style advice, the cardinal rule of successful dressing always comes down to this: choose the look that makes you happiest. For this fête, you want to embrace the outfit that’s going to make you feel like a glam goddess, but one who’s comfy, too — an outfit that will allow you to eat, drink, and mingle as much as you want without constant adjustments. Love caftans? We love them more. Want to wear your favorite maxi dress? Please do. Rocking a shimmery midi skirt? We couldn’t be happier for you. In the end, this is your party, in your city. You should make it exactly what you want it to be.