The Subtle Art Of Nailing The Classy Dressing Style

Nothing spells confidence and grace like an elegant sense of dolling oneself up.

Reviewed by Raluca Oita, Fashion Designer Raluca Oita Raluca OitaFashion Designer facebook_iconinsta_icon
Written by , MSc Pratima Ati MSc linkedin_icon
Edited by , MA (English) Subhrojyoti Mukherjee MA (English) linkedin_icon Experience: 4 years
Fact-checked by , MA (Journalism & Mass Communication), Certified Style & Image Consultant Srijani Roy Chowdhury MA (Journalism & Mass Communication), Certified Style & Image Consultant linkedin_icon Experience: 3 years
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Elegance is a lifestyle choice reflected through your taste in clothes. If you want to know how to dress classy, you have landed on the right page. Your attires visually represent the state of your mind, and there are various ways to style your clothes. From accessorizing your solid color dresses to pairing them with the right footwear, a lot of thought goes into an elegant look.

But honestly, you cannot label a particular outfit as elegant and strike others out. If you know how to pull off a shimmery dress with confidence, that’s what classy is! In this article, we will discuss how you can assemble your minimal and subtle pieces to create a classy look.

Swipe up!

protip_icon Ace The Look
  • Hair Color: Go for muted hair colors like chocolate brown, light caramel, or chestnut brown that exude sophisticated glamor.
  • Inspiration: Follow fashion influencers to stay updated on the latest trends or make a fashion moodboard on Pinterest for some sartorial inspiration. Incorporate only classy fashion trends like the dark academia or quiet luxury aesthetic.
  • Footwear: Pick your footwear based on your outfit. If you are going casual, classic white sneakers or converse are a great choice. For a formal setting like a meeting or wedding, opt for dressy shoes like kitten heels, espadrilles, and mary janes.
  • Avoid: Do not mix multiple patterns together. Avoid wearing very tight clothing. Steer clear from gaudy or harsh colors like bright pinks that can wash out your skin tone.

Essential Tips For Classy Dressing

1. Know Your Body Type

Know your body type before you dress classy
Image: Shutterstock

Let’s take it from the top. Any ‘Styling 101’ list starts with figuring out your body type. Don’t listen to anyone who tells you otherwise. Do you often imagine looking a certain way and end up looking the opposite? Chances are you are investing in clothes that don’t match your figure. Be realistic about your choices. Start by figuring out your body type and what looks good on it. It’s failproof!

2. Understand Your Personal Style

Dress classy in your style
Image: Shutterstock

Let’s go back to where we started. Has an outfit ever looked different on you from how you imagined it would while buying it? For all you know, it was an impulsive purchase and not something you would naturally select for yourself. It is essential to understand your personal style and wear clothes that define your personality. Imagine yourself in the first 15 minutes of getting ready for work or a party. Are you constantly putting away a few pieces of clothing without ever wearing them? Then, it looks like you bought them on a whim. They need to go right out of the window, and this exercise will help to steer you in the right direction every time you go shopping.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Stop chasing every new trend on social media. Not all trends are meant for everyone. Define your style and keep up with trends relevant to it.

3. Invest In Classic And Timeless Pieces

Dress classy in one-piece dresses
Image: Shutterstock

Invest in classic and timeless pieces. Go for evergreen fabrics and quality clothing. Map your personal style and body type while making a purchase. Leather jackets. A little black dress. A trench coat. White shirts. A few pairs (at least) of well-fitted jeans. Denim jackets. Cashmere sweaters, stoles, cardigans, or pullovers. Crewneck T-shirts. Plain T-shirts. One-piece dresses. We are not even talking about expensive or luxury brands here, just good quality stuff that does not go out of style. You can match them with current trends by keeping the classic vibe intact. After all, classic is classy. What good is a shirt if it doesn’t feel good to wear? It’s all about the fabric. Quality, natural fabrics like silk and cotton are timeless, elegant pieces that add an air of sophistication to your look. Opt for natural fabrics like wool, cashmere, silk, linen, cotton, leather and suede and good quality synthetics such as elastane and viscose. There’s nothing worse than breaking out in a rash after wearing new clothing—and it happens more often than you think! If you’re going to invest in clothing, invest in quality fabrics that will last forever.

4. Minimal. Subtle. Mellow

You can wear a pair of jeans, a black T-shirt, a pair of Converse shoes, a messy bun, and still look classy. You can wear an LBD, pumps, red lipstick, a bun, a clutch, and – you guessed it – still look classy. You can wear a white linen dress, dainty jewelry, flats, a high pony, nude makeup, and go with the textbook definition of classy.

Remember – the idea and the easiest way of nailing it is to always, always be minimal, subtle, and mellow. It is endearing and suave and can never go wrong.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Minimal does not mean you slack in the neat department. Neat and clean are the basics of a classy style. Ensure your clothes are without creases, stains, holes, tears, or fading patches.

5. Neutral Color Palette – Ride On It

Experts suggest a holistic approach to building a closet. Go for muted pastels, neutral shades, and earthy tones. Take a good look at your wardrobe. If you see too many loud prints, unnecessary cuts, or overarching layers, know that they might be getting in the way of classy dressing.

6. Bank On Black

Dress classy in an all-black outfit
Image: Shutterstock

Black is everyone’s favorite for more reasons than we want to admit. All-black outfits or as-much-black-as-possible outfits are free passes to classy dressing. Play with layers, spruce up with exquisite jewelry or bold accessories, or amp up with shoes and a handbag. You can wear a simple black T-shirt and trousers, an LBD (we will keep coming back to this a lot), or a long gown and dress up or dress down to pull off the classy look.

7. Meaningful Monochromes

Dress classy in meaningful monochromes
Image: Shutterstock

Monochrome is more than just its literal meaning, i.e., dressing up in one color from head to toe. The idea is to create a silhouette. You can combine shades of the same color – light with dark tints, different tones, and the ombre effect are a few ways to go about it. Gray, navy, black, pastels, and powdered colors make exciting choices for perfect monochrome outfits. It is a classy signature style.

8. Fit Says Forget Me Not

Dress classy in figure-fitting clothes
Image: Shutterstock

Your clothes need to fit you well. They cannot be too tight or too loose. Wearing oversized clothes is classy, but it’s not an invitation for looking sloppy. Figure-fitting clothes look great, but say no to revealing or choking body fits. There is nothing flattering about them. Stick to structures and play with patterns. Sway with silhouettes and flow with the flare. A great fit is the sum total of it all. A classy outfit is the result.

9. Clean Up, Be Brutal

Clean up your wardrobe. Brutally. Ruthlessly.

Do not hold on to pieces that don’t see the light of the day or don’t match your personality or style, especially when you are moving towards a classy dressing style. Know your wardrobe, take a good look at it, and declutter anything you haven’t worn in the last three months. This way, you will steer away from impulsive purchases. A capsule wardrobe can be way more functional, classy, and chic than an unnecessarily overflowing closet.

protip_icon Quick Tip
“Cleaning-up” applies to your body too. Clean up well. There should be no signs of grease, dirt, or dead skin cells. Otherwise, the entire point of your classy clothes is lost.

10. Hair And Makeup Matter

A slick bun or a ponytail with a full suit. A messy bun with a gown. A chignon updo in summers. “No makeup” makeup look for work. Smokey eyes for special occasions. A dewy base for the minimalist in you. Red lipstick for everything else. However, just like everything else, there is a ‘but’ to this story.

Hair and makeup are a double-edged sword. They finish off classy dressing perfectly, but can also ruin it just as powerfully. Too much color, shine, or shimmer and no balance can derail it all. Watch out.

11. Ace The Accessories Game

Ace the accessories game to dress classy
Image: Shutterstock

Accessorizing is an art. Wearing the right things at the right time is not as simple as it looks. The knack for adding just enough to your outfit needs prowess. It needs to be neither too much nor too little. Classy dressing is a lot like minimalistic dressing, but without being too bland. When you deck up your ears, leave your neck bare, or the other way around. A statement finger ring with a classic tote is another great way to go. Sandals, boots, pumps, or Oxfords – wear whatever rocks your “classy” boat.

12. Amp Up The Good Parts

Amp up the good parts to dress classy
Image: Shutterstock

Choose one part of the outfit and let it shine. A checkered trouser with a muted top. A sequined top with a cute skirt. A silk blouse with a pencil skirt. Tapered jeans with a white shirt. An encompassing gown with pumps. The idea is to amp up one good part of the outfit.

13. Nails On Point

We are not telling you to spend hundreds of dollars every month to get a mani/pedi done, but clean nails make a world of difference. Keep your nails clean, cut, and preferably manicured. It is an investment we all need.

14. The Devil Is In The Details

Think through the details of your outfit ahead of time. Always. Every little detail matters because classy dressing is pretty minimalistic, and you can’t let any details slip up.

15. Nothing OTT, Please!

Wearing high-end brands is okay. Owning them is great. Wanting to buy more is fine too. But none of this truly defines classy dressing. Also, avoid over-the-top brand logos, in-your-face bling, and more than one loud print in the entire outfit. Instead, invest in signature or classy pieces from your favorite luxury brands. Underplaying is the etiquette to follow for classy dressing.

Infographic: 5 Tips To Nail The Classy Style

Trying out a classy look might require decluttering your wardrobe. You just need to figure out the nuances to style your outfits so that they flatter your body and match your vibe. In the following infographic, we have listed the five tips to dress classy. Check them out right away!

5 tips to nail the classy style (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

The classy dressing style has less to do with what you wear and more to do with how you wear it. The most important point to keep in mind when shifting to a classy dressing style is to pick clothes according to your body type and personality. It is also essential to invest in good-quality basics that have a great fit. With all the details shared in this article, now you must have a better idea of how to dress classy. Keep it simple, keep it subtle, and there you have it.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a classy look?

A classy look is all about the overall air you carry yourself with. You do not need to wear expensive clothes and accessories. If you know what works for you and you carry it with confidence and dignity, that is class right there!

How can I look simple and classy?

You may achieve a simple yet classy appearance with a minimal and clean style. Cut down on extravagant adornments, and pick in fashion sober colors and plain fabrics over patterned ones. Ditch the frills, beads, and eye-catching textures. All you need to do is dress neat, wear minimal accessories, and carry yourself with grace.

How do I look classy in jeans?

Pair your jeans with tops of contrasting colors and fits. For example, if you are wearing skinny jeans, wear loose tops and shirts, and if you are wearing baggy mom jeans, wear form-fitting tops. You can use timeless accessories like dark shades and hoop earrings. As long as your ensemble does not look shabby, unwashed, or worn out, there are many ways to make a classy statement with jeans.

How do you look classy on a budget?

The first step is to wear comfortable clothes that fit right. Ensure your clothes are stain-free and creaseless. Plan and coordinate your entire look where your colors are complementary, and the bling is balanced.

How can I look classy at home?

For a classy look at home for work calls or hosting guests, ensure you carry a comfy and neat style. Athleisure sets or clothes that aren’t torn or faded would do just fine. Avoid revealing outfits and use cardigans and shrugs. Grooming your hair by brushing and tying it up if you are moving around a lot is enough. Opt for minimal makeup, just enough to make you look fresh and lively.

Key Takeaways

  • Being classy is a lifestyle choice and is reflected through your taste in clothes.
  • Start by figuring out your body type and what looks good on it.
  • Understand your style and wear clothes that define your personality.
  • Remember – the easiest way of nailing it is always to be minimal, subtle, and mellow.”
The Subtle Art Of Nailing The Classy Dressing Style

Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team


Struggling to strike the perfect balance between classy and casual? Look no further! Click on the video below to unravel the secrets to effortlessly chic dressing.

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Raluca Oita

Raluca OitaFashion Designer

Raluca Oita is a fashion designer with an experience of over 8 years. She has a bachelor’s degree from Westminster University, London. After graduating, she started working as a fashion designer for various brands. It was during this time that she realized that there was a lack of high-quality sewing patterns available on the market, so she co-founded Georgette Patterns, a sewing patterns boutique, to bridge the gap between high fashion and dressmaking
Read full bio of Raluca Oita