What to Wear to a Class Reunion

What to Wear to a Class Reunion

A reader writes:

Since fall is on the horizon and that is when most class reunions are, do you have any suggestions of what to wear? My husband’s 30th is at the end of September. Mine isn’t until next year. They have a homecoming football game on Friday night, then Saturday night is a party/event at the hotel they have rooms blocked off. It is a small/mid-size midwest town in northern Ohio so it will not be formal! Love to hear any suggestions you have!

I expect she’s not alone. At our stage of life, milestone class reunions seem to be popping up with alarming regularity, and it’s definitely an occasion that requires some thought and planning. Of course we want to look modern and stylish if we’re going to be seeing people we went to school with 20, 25, or 30 years ago.

Would you believe, I’ve never been to one of my class reunions? I have no desire. I keep up with the few people I care to keep up with on Facebook, and that’s good enough for me. In fact, I can’t imagine anything more awkward than a class reunion. Perhaps it has something to do with my unconventional job, or maybe it’s just my personality. I enjoyed high school, but I was happy to move on and haven’t really looked back.

That said, I did accompany Paul to one of his high school class reunions a few years ago — I think it was his 25th? It was just a casual cocktail hour with food stations in a restaurant nearby. It wasn’t a horrible night, but it’s not one I care to repeat either.

I’m sure every situation is a little bit different, but in his case, and in the Saturday night situation described above, a typical date night outfit is a pretty safe bet.

You know, a dress that’s a little flirty — not too conservative but not come-hither either. Or, my go-to date night look — a great pair of jeans, cute top, and heels. Throw a moto jacket on top for some structure and a little edge, grab a fun clutch, and you’re good to go!

top // jeans // shoes // earrings // watch // bag

The key here is to keep it classy. Choose clothing that fits you well — the styles and colors that are your most flattering. And I recommend wearing your highest quality pieces, especially when it comes to shoes and handbags.

Amy rounded up some ideas, since she’s recently been to a class reunion. These are mostly warm-weather pieces, but you can obviously swap them out for something more appropriate for your climate and the time of year your event is being held.

For the football game portion of the event, I’d just go with jeans, low-heeled booties or loafers, and a sweater or leveled up sweatshirt — maybe even in team colors, if that doesn’t feel too cheesy.

twist front top // jeans // booties // necklace // watch // crossbody

Something like that! I hope that helps. If you’ve been to a class reunion recently, feel free to chime in!

Fashion Friday

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27 Responses

  1. I feel the same way, I have no interest in attending any school reunions, I keep in touch with all the people I care to do so with lol. Love this classic look, perfect for Fall.


  2. How funny because we just did a couple of blog posts on this subject…both the casual and fancy events. I kinda feel like you….there are some women I keep in touch with from high school but we get together on our own. But my friend who was filling in on the blog while my stepmom was on sabbatical was planning on going to her 50th class reunion, so that’s why we did those posts.
    In fact, I included the casual one for your linkup!!

  3. Thank you for this! Just yesterday I was searching for something to wear to my husband’s 30-something reunion for a club he was involved with in college. The invitation says “Nice Casual” attire for dinner, and there is a football game earlier on the same day. It will be over Labor Day weekend with 80 degree temps during the day and mid 50’s at night. Looks like the moto jacket will be a good idea. Now to get through the weekend mingling with people I don’t know!

  4. You know, Jo-Lynne, I have never attended a class reunion either.  I am like you, I keep up with the people I am interested in and with Facebook and other social media, I know more than I probably care to!  Although, my 25th high school reunion was last summer and I actually was very interested in attending, but I couldn’t fit it in my schedule.  I think they held it on a holiday weekend and it was planned super last minute and we already had plans.  Oh well, maybe I will make the 30th. But I agree there are probably many people who stress over what to wear to such an event.  And it also depends on the dress code.  I have seen some class reunions held at very fancy places while others were simply barbecues in a park. Great tips for everyone though for this type of event!  Have a great weekend.


  5. My husband’s 20th class reunion was in 2007.  There were 17 people in his graduating class, and one graduate simply invited everyone over to his house for a BBQ potluck. It was a great time and I remember laughing until my sides hurt.  In contrast, my 30th is next weekend, and my graduating class was almost 700 people. There are three days of events planned, from golf to a formal dinner to a bar night and a family picnic. No thank you.

  6. Oh my goodness, your  thoughts on class reunions are so similar to mine! I enjoy keeping up with people on Facebook but I have no desire to go to a reunion for myself or my husband. I find that my life has moved on quite a bit from my hometown and there’s just no reason to go back (& my parents moved close to me so I really don’t need to go back!). I’m sure some of my old insecurities from the teenage years still lurk in the back of my mind too…. Definitely good ideas about what to wear though!

  7. Thanks for this post. It confirms my thoughts! I have no desire to go to my high school reunions but I did attend my 30th and soon my 40th grade school reunions. These seem more personal as we grew up together then scattered for high school. Our group is casual so my plan is a version of your jeans nice top and booties. 

  8. I really enjoyed the post regarding your new house. Do you read any home decorating blogs for inspiration? If so, which ones? I think our tastes in home decor are similar.


  9. Just attended my 50th class reunion!  Had a great time.  Saw friends who live in our small town but also classmates who don’t live close by.  It was great just to see everyone.  The most amazing thing was that at this stage in our lives, there are no “cliques”.  The most popular person in high school was just as happy to see those who were the quiet ones that were not in the “in” group.  Everyone seemed to enjoy it and we sent group texts and messages to express that.  We had 98 in our graduating class.  

  10. SAME! Never been to a reunion and really don’t have a desire to. I saw the mattress on your stories. We’re looking for a new mattress, so I’ll be interested to see what y’all think about it. Funny, we were on the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) yesterday and my husband pointed to an add for that mattress. I said “Jo-Lynne just got one”. What a coincidence. I guess you’re on the cutting edge for mattresses. LOL Happy weekend! XO

  11. High school reunions, heck no! College reunions, though, yes yes yes! I’ve never been to one of my high school reunions, and I don’t ever plan to. But I never miss a college reunion. Those were where I met my people. And I could show up to a college reunion in a garbage bag and feel completely at ease.

  12. Hey Jolynne! We had our 50th Class Reunion last Month! I haven’t been to one since the 10th. But I thought, the 50th, what the heck!! I’ll go!! It did turn out to be the best one, so I’m told, that they have had. With, a lot more classmates attending. We did have a wonderful time. Ours was casual dress! So we has everything from shorts, to maxis. Crop Pants, capris and slacks and pretty tops. It was very hot, so the cooler you could dress the better. Hope this helps! As always, love your blog. Have a Great Weekend!! –Linda

  13. Ha, I’m with you. I have no desire to attend a high school reunion. That was then this is now. Now having said that… last weekend my husband had his school reunion. He graduated from a very small school so they combined the years. It was nice as those that attended are friends we keep in touch with and have over the years. It was nice to really just sit and visit, with out it being at a funeral (which for some reason seems to be where we meet up with people from years. past) The reunion was held at my husbands brothers lake lot and with the heat and humidity we are having I opted for cute patterned shorts and a white top with a decorative sleeve and silver simple sandal. (slip on) . I was going to wear a sundress but with the location what I wore worked just fine. Have a great weekend. We just bought a new entertainment center(console) its off white with a brown wood grain top, that has the barn look sliding doors. So I will be doing some moving around of things over the weekend. My decorating changes have begun. We are doing a trip the USA in a couple of weeks where I hope to pickup a few different things. Can’t wait. I have a traditional style but am adding in the rustic look with it. ( in our family room and bonus room)
    Cheers Karen

  14. Oh my goodness, I have not been to one of my class reunions since the 10th, when I decided they just weren’t for me, and it will soon be 40 years since I graduated from high school! I’m with you, they are awkward! For some reason, I enjoy my husand’s class reunions, the people seem more friendly and I actually feel as if I know them better/have more in common with them. My sister is the same way, she goes to her husband’s. 
    Still not getting your emails 😭

  15. Lol, it’s amazing to me how many people feel the same way that I do about class reunions. I too have no desire to go to mine. My 40th is this year, and they actually are calling people to get addresses, I’m assuming to try to get a big turnout. Still not interested. As others have mentioned, I keep in touch with those people that I’m friends with, and that’s enough for me. 🙂 Great outfits though! I love booties, and am strangely drawn to neutral tan ones. Even at Nordstroms today I had to make myself move on from several pairs because i already have multiple pairs of tan booties. 😀

  16. Such a coincidence! I have a big one coming up next summer and I’ve already started thinking about what to wear. I’ve been to a couple reunions years ago but like you, I’ve never really wanted to go. But since it’s the 50, I think I will go! I do want to keep it classy but at the same time look cute, maybe even turn a few heads. I’ve been single for 20+ years.. Wouldn’t it be funny to reunite with an old friend and hit it off!

  17. I just realized my 40th high school reunion is this year. I have no desire to attend other than the motivation to lose about ten pounds.

  18. No desire for high school or college reunions but I did go to one for my sorority celebrating 40 years on campus.  Loved it but these are different friends than just classmates – it was women from 18 to 60 and we all immediately had something in common. 

  19. I’ve worn everything from shorts to a cocktail dress to my high school reunions. It always depends where it’s being held. We all were very close in high school, so it’s always fun to get together. Everyone went to different colleges after high school, ( different states) so, it’s like coming home when we have a reunion. I like your choices for a class reunion though! 

  20. I was wondering if you or anyone has tried THRIVE cosmetics   They pop up on my Instagram and have great reviews with their mascara   Thank you!

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