What to wear to a gala? – Choose your favorite from 18 looks!

by Sylvia

What to wear to a gala? - more inspiration from the Ballet gala in New York! | 40plusstyle.com

Galas come in different shapes and forms. The dress code for the New York city ballet gala was definitely formal but open to personal interpretation.

Many women wore gowns, but also shorter dresses, pant suits or more regular evening dresses. I believe you can look great in both long and medium length gowns for an event like this or special pant suits. I would keep it festive though and opt for special fabrics like silk or lace.

The perfect fit is essential and good draping in all the right places can be your best friend.

I would also stay as true as possible to your style personality. Try to let it shine through your outfit!

I already shared earlier pictures from the gala here and here.

In the additional selection below, you can really see each woman’s personality coming through in many of these outfits which included a few stand-out looks for me.

1. Fuchsia

This woman (pictured above) is a stand-out. What a unique dress in a fabulous color! It looks like a perfect fit for this woman and her creative spirit is shining through.

2. All black


3. Blue flowers

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4. Black lace


5. Fuchsia and orange

Another stand-out dress, of course beautifully complemented by her beautiful face and smile. Just love the combination of these 2 colors and the soft flow and drape of this dress.


6. Black & white suit


7. Arty


8. Black elegance


9. Black and white stripes


10. Beautiful pastels


11. Practical black


12. Strapless glitter

Gorgeous elegant and glamorous look that is super practical to wear.


13. Short cape and see blue dress

A unique choice but this short black cape suits this woman well and it’s a standout look for me.


14. Pleats

This looks like a Miyake jacket and a piece from this designer is high on my list. It lifts a plain pant suit into something special!


15. Horizontal pleats


16. Turquoise and blue


17. Flirty lace


18. Mint green

What a beautiful color for a dress which suits this woman so well. I also love the draping of the fabric from right to left. Looks like she paired it with the perfect shoes too. The gentleman is looking very chic too.


Stay tuned for even more looks from the ballet gala coming up soon.

Which outfit is your favorite?


Photography by Denton Taylor

1 Patti

I am always drawn to the arty looks you feature, Sylvia. The turquoise and blue dress is another favorite. xo

2 denton

#12 is my favorite, of course the woman is very beautiful. I saw #7, the arty one, a couple of weeks later in the neighborhood, wearing something similar in bright yellow!

3 Rina

I vote for #5 – pretty with nice movement.

4 Bonnie Gough

So many great outfits but I like #1 and #18 the best – two lovely ladies in fabulous dresses.

5 Jodie filogomo

Such fun and interesting people watching from my own computer!! I must say, in my opinion, the colorful ones really stand out…maybe the days of the all black should fade away? jodie

6 Sheela Goh

Definitely #13 with the Miyake jacket closely coveted.

7 Nina Forrest

I thought most were stunning. It seems that these folks have much better taste than the “fashionistas” at the Oscars.

8 Alisa

I was drawn to the pink and orange dress. But lots of diverse and lovely looks.

9 Elaine

Wonderful variety of styles. My favorites are
#1 for the stunning color
#12 a classy look that I might wear
#18 love the accessories especially the unusual necklace pairing – it works

10 Greetje

The fuchsia and the fuchsia+ orange are my favourites. But the all blue dress (13) is very nice too. The strapless glitter (12) is very becoming for this lady. She wears it well. The pleats of 14, although a good designer.. somehow it doesn’t sit right. It uplifts a suit but it does not uplift her IMO. 16 is gorgeous, but I would prefer it on a younger woman. Why? I don’t know. She still has a good body and arms… don’t know. 18, the mint green is beautiful, but I would have worn more delicate jewellery with it. And her arms show you exactly why I don’t want a dress without sleeves. I give her kuddos though for not caring about that at all.

11 Katja

Frankly, I don’t like any of those looks. Not one. They do, however, serve an important purpose: how NOT do dress. The last dress is nice, but the wearer is far too old for it, and her choice of accessories shows more money than taste — a common affliction. Her arms are not in shape, and her décolletage is wrinkly. None of those things is bad, age happens, but one should be honest and self-aware enough to realise it, and choose something more appropriate.

After looking at these images, I am more inspired than ever to follow the old rules of style and etiquette that my mum and grandmother instilled in me.

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