skip to content
Girl in short flower dress with cap and gown

College Dresses to Wear to Dances, Formals, Parties

Ace this wardrobe test

Go ahead and wear sweatpants to class. But you’ll need fabulous dresses for college events, like spring fling, sorority parties, and graduation. Keep reading for outfit ideas and tips for dressing for all of your occasions this semester.

School Formals

Collage of green and black short formal dress, black bag and heels

Dresses for school formals don’t have to be ball gowns. An on-trend party dress is a great choice—you can add personality with fun jewelry and shoes. In fall or winter, we love rich jewel tones. In spring, think pastels and bright florals.

Sorority Events

Collage of little white dress with long sleeves for sorority events, gold jewelry and heels

Sorority initiations sometimes call for white—our favorite! Wear a little white dress with beautiful details, like a unique neckline or fabric. You can add a hint of soft color, like blush or rose gold, with your accessories.


Collage of little black dress for weddings, silver earrings and shoe

What to wear to a wedding can be as simple as your favorite LBD or maxi dress. If the invite says black tie or black tie optional, we’d suggest upgrading to something elegant and floor-length. Skip wearing head-to-toe white, but don’t worry if it’s part of a print or appears on a small part of your dress.

Military Balls

Collage of long navy dress for military balls, silver clutch, and shoe

Service members wear their dressiest uniforms to military balls, so you can follow suit! That means a long and sophisticated look, in a color that complements your date’s uniform. Military ball attire tends to be on the conservative side, so bring along a shawl or jacket to wear during dinner then take off when you’re ready to dance.


Collage of little white dress for graduation, silver shoes, and bracelet

Yet another ideal event for the little white dress! Celebrate your achievement in something lovely and ladylike. Don’t forget that you’ll be under your cap and gown at least part of the day, so pick a fabric that’s cool and lightweight.

Shop more dresses for college events (or any upcoming special occasion), accessories, and shoes online or at your local David’s Bridal. Plus see IRL inspiration from our #DavidsBridalU campus ambassadors on Instagram!

Related Posts: