I have never really grown up around fancy Thanksgiving dinners or days. We're a pretty casual family, so even the extended family holiday meals tended to be fairly low key. Actually, around the time I went to college my parents made it a bit of a tradition to take us to the beach over the Thanksgiving holiday. We spent a warm and sandy Thanksgiving happy as could be in shorts and sweatshirts, so the thought of a very dressed up Thanksgiving day is foreign to me.
But in talking with friends over the years, I've realized that formal dinners on Thanksgiving day was more common than I realized. They spent their dinners trying not to scratch the china plates or drop the crystal goblets.
No matter if you're firmly in the camp of "Elegant Holiday" or "Let's Go to the Beach", I wanted to share some thoughts on outfits for the day. This year, true to our roots, we're heading somewhere tropical over the holiday so to touch on all scenarios this post will have a mix of cold weather looks and warm weather ensembles.
A Tropical Thanksgiving
Weather: anything over 80 degree
Vibe: super chill and relaxed due to all that extra Vitamin D. Someone else is cooking so your biggest concern is the best deck chair to optimize sun, shade, and food proximity.
I've been on a fair number of tropical holidays now and it seems my de-facto outfits always contain blue and white. They're my warm weather/vacation neutrals and this upcoming Thanksgiving is shaping up to be no different. Thankfully, this is the best time of the year to shop for warm weather clothing as everything is discounted.
- Summersalt Mix Stitch Sweater
- J.Crew White Linen Shorts
- Toms Neutral Wedges (I've had these for years and they are about as comfortable as you can get for a shoe)
- Wicker Bag
Alternate Sweater Option: The Sezane Leontine Sweater in Ecru/Navy Stripe is the perfect weight and color for any tropical holiday.
A Casual At Home Thanksgiving
Weather: can range from 35 to 75 degrees depending on your location
Vibe: low key but special. The parade is on in the background and you're likely on chopping duty. There's hot cider somewhere and you're far from hungry but dinner is in 2 hours.
This is your typical Thanksgiving affair. It's cozy and simple. You're with loved ones - whatever that may look like - and the meal is to be enjoyed about 3 times over between taste tests, the real deal, and leftovers. At any moment you might expect the gang from Friends to come strolling through the door after deciding on a new champion for the Geller Cup.
An Elegant Holiday
Weather: likely cold
Vibe: whether you're with friends or family, this is a holiday to be remembered. The china comes out as the candlelight comes on. It's not formal, it is an elegant affair.
Ralph Lauren himself would be proud. You exemplify all the beauty and grace of Ms. United States in your elegant attire. Turkey is served with a caviar garnish and the dinner is served in courses which includes a cheese board before dinner much to everyone's delight. We will be classy but also still comfortable a feat achieved by dresses with no waistlines and shoes meant for dancing.
- A black silk slip dress – a few virtues of this type of dress: no waistline, can be worn loose, won't show wrinkles
- A tan wool coat for braving the elements outside
- Shoes meant to stand in like these Sarah Flint X M.M. LaFleur beauties will last you hours into the night
Alternate Dress Choice: from Quince