6 Outfit Ideas You Can Wear to Any Retirement Party
Updated: Feb 22
This is one of those posts I am writing not just for you but for personal reasons as well. One of my former managers would be retiring in some months and invited me to her corporate retirement party. I don’t know about you, but I have never been to a retirement party. If you’ve never been to one, then you’re in for a treat.
The first thing you want to know before deciding on your retirement party outfit is the type of retirement party you are headed to. The dress code would have a huge impact on your choice of outfit. You don’t want to show up in a cocktail dress when there’s a casual dress code. If the party involves two stages – one at the office and then dinner after, you have to plan a different type of outfit here as well.
In today’s blog post, I would be sharing the best retirement party outfits you can wear to celebrate a colleague, friend’s or family member’s retirement. The different outfits would cover the different dress codes your guest of honor could be enforcing, and I would also show you ways to dress an outfit up or down for different occasions.
If you are looking for some outfit inspiration when it comes to putting together a chic look for a retirement party, do keep reading. There are certain outfits that could also work if there is no specific dress code but you want to make sure you’re not under dressed or over dressed. We wouldn’t want you to outshine the guest of honor!
Before we dive into the different outfits you could put together, I would like to share a few great ideas of retirement gifts. Your host would definitely appreciate any gift you bring to celebrate this milestone and so here are some great options that won’t break the bank.
*Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means that I get a small commission if you decide to make a purchase through the links, at no cost to you.
Where to find a great retirement gift
Etsy is probably my favorite place to shop for unique gifts. A lot of items are handcrafted and unique, making them stand out at events. When it comes to retirement gifts, they offer a large selection of unisex gifts that can be customized for the recipient. One of my favorites is THIS newspaper retirement gift that would be a great idea to gift your boss.
Another good idea for a gift is THIS funny retirement candle, bound to draw a few laughs.
I think the best gift you can give to a co-worker, manager or former boss who is retiring is one with a little humor. This would help lighten the mood and would also be very memorable. Who doesn’t love a good laugh? With that in mind, Amazon offers a large number of humorous gift ideas such as THIS MUG with a funny caption.
A less sentimental gift you can give to someone you were not close to at work is this simple and sweet key chain.
Target may not have a section dedicated to retirement gift ideas but they do offer a wide selection of general gifts. If you know the person retiring is going to be picking up gardening post-retirement, THIS Garden tool set would make for a great gift. When you’re truly unsure about what to get, a book is usually a good idea. Find a great selection at Target HERE.
For the retirees who are avid golfers, a nice polo shirt or set of golf balls would always be welcomed and appreciated.
Now that you have an idea of what gift to get for the person retiring, let’s talk about your outfit! Let’s make sure you show up looking good to help the retiree celebrate this next step of their lives.
What to wear to a retirement party
1) Little black dress
If the retirement party has a cocktail attire dress code, this is the perfect opportunity to whip out your LBD. I would suggest one that is at least knee-length if this is a work function. We still want to look appropriate for the office. Feel free to add a pair of black tights if your dress is on the shorter side. You could also add a cardigan on top if the event is during the colder months.
THIS black dress would be a great choice.
If there is a formal dinner involved, add a pair of high heels to complete your look. I would suggest you avoid a floor-length dress so as to not outshine the person of the hour. During the winter, feel free to opt for a pair of ankle boots or knee-high boots to keep warm but chic.
2) Blouse and midi skirt
If the dress code is more business casual, I would recommend going for a skirt and blouse look. This is another look that works great both for the office as well as dinner afterwards. A midi skirt is safe enough for the workplace while keeping things slightly casual. A pair of ballet flats or mules are great option for footwear.
Get the look HERE
During the winter months, feel free to replace your blouse with a fitted sweater. You could also add a pair of leggings underneath your skirt to add an extra layer of warmth. A trench coat would be a great way to pull this look together.
3) Jeans and blazer
If you’re headed to a more casual retirement party, one that may involve retirement party games, you do not want to be overdressed. A smart casual dress code is what you want to go for in order to stay chic but comfortable. A pair of skinny jeans with a simple white t-shirt and a structured blazer should be your go-to style.
Get the look HERE
You can easily dress up your look with a pair of heels or you can choose a pair of flats if you’re going to be around just family members. Your focus should be on having a good time and not worrying about whether your zipper may give out in a tight dress. Feel free to add a chunky knit sweater or scarf and a pair of ankle boots during the Fall.
4) Pencil skirt + leather jacket
If you are headed for drinks during cocktail hour for a retirement celebration, you don’t want to be sporting a long dress. A pencil skirt would be easy to transition from work to after work. A great way to bring your entire look together is by adding a black leather jacket.
Get the look HERE
You could wear flats or boots while at the office and slip into a pair of high heels right after to grab some drinks. Choose a simple tank top to wear under your jacket if the party is during the warmer months. You could also pair your pencil skirt with a blouse for a more formal look. A sweater can be worn underneath your leather jacket during the cold months.
5) A cocktail dress
Looking to stand out at a retirement party with a formal dress code? Look no further than THIS maxi dress featuring a keyhole detail. If your party hosts want everyone to come looking their best, a longer dress is a great option. A formal cocktail dress does not have to be tight and stuffy.
Get the look HERE
This dress meets the criteria while also allowing you to feel free. The elegant long sleeves could help cover your arms while the cinched waist gives the illusion of a smaller waist. It’s the perfect choice for a formal occasion. Don’t forget to carry a nice clutch purse!
6) Trousers and a simple top
If dresses and skirts are not your thing, you can still look chic and put-together in a pants and top combination. If your close friend is retiring and keeping the gathering small, you can feel less pressure to dress up. You still want to put your best foot forward as you attend their special event. If a pair of jeans seems too casual for you, try a pair of trousers.
Get the look HERE
During the warmer weather, you can replace the pants with a pair of culottes. Choose a simple top or blouse, over which you could wear a cardigan or blazer should you feel the need. A pair of flat sandals or flats could be worn for footwear. If this is an extra casual event, feel free to throw on a pair of white sneakers.
I hope you’ve gotten some great inspiration for your retirement party outfits. Remember to always check what the dress code (or theme of the party) is and go from there. The safest outfit would be a pair of dark-wash jeans paired with a blazer and a pair of flats. This outfit works both for the office as well as any activities happening outside the office.
Try to bring the retiree a gift and feel free to refer to my suggestions above. Leave the Hawaiian shorts to your other colleagues while you part with them on a high note by offering a more memorable gift.
Do check out my post: 10 shoes to wear with a black cocktail dress if you are going to be wearing a little black dress.
I also have a post: The 7 best coats to wear with dress if the retirement party is occurring during the winter months.
Until the next post,