One of the best things about being retired is the fact we get to explore our area and go to wonderful events. Thus when we attended the Haru spring event at the Japanese Friendship Garden here in Phoenix, Arizona, I figured it was the perfect time to talk about what to wear to an outdoor event.
Quote of the day: “Criticizing is easy and fast. Creating is difficult and slow. The two hours you spent on a book or movie usually took two years to produce. Anyone can tear down someone else’s work. The true test of insights is whether you can help them improve it or build something of your own.” James Clear
Helping you figure out what to wear to an outdoor event is my goal with this article. There are important factors to take into account before you get dressed. Because what you don’t want is to spend the whole day regretting what you wore.
As a fashionista, incorporating these ideas and still looking great is not impossible and hopefully, we will give you inspiration.
The spring day we attended this event was forecasted to be 60 degrees. Realizing that 60 degrees would be high for the day which wouldn’t happen until about 2 pm, and we were going to be at the event at 10 am, was factored into our clothing choices.
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We have showcased our thought about what to wear in certain temperatures in the past. Of course, everyone is very different in how they react to temperatures, and there are other factors involved more than just the degrees, like humidity, and being in the sun among other things.
Stylish & Functional Ideas of What to Wear to an Outdoor Event
We have a lot of experience with what to wear to an outdoor event, so let me break it down into an easy-to-remember list.
1-Comfortable shoes– I think this is one of the most important ideas because even if it is a sit-down event, you may have to walk a bit to get to it from the parking area. Making sure our feet are happy is truly a smart thing to do.
2-Weather-appropriate items- Since most of us vary in what we consider hot, warm, or cold temperatures, I think it’s always advisable to take some kind of topper and/or scarf just in case. Our philosophy is “It’s better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.” Most of the time, if you aren’t sure you will need the extra layer, you can leave it in the car. Or worst case, you carry it around.
3–Sun coverage– With an outdoor event, you most likely need to think about being protected from the sun. Your clothing layers can help with this, but a hat, visor, or chemical sunscreen is essential for your face and neck (don’t forget the back of your neck if you have short hair).
4–Sunnies– And just as important as sun coverage to your skin, is giving your eyes the sun protection they need. For my mother and I, we have progressive glasses that transition to sunglasses. While these aren’t quite as dark as traditional sunglasses, the convenience factor trumps that detail for us on most days.
5–Hands-free purse– It’s not impossible to carry your purse around, but when we think about what to wear to an outdoor event, it’s always easier to have a hands-free option. Whether that’s a cross-body purse or sling bag or even just putting things in your pocket.
Insider tip: Lesley subscribes to the thought of bringing a larger purse/tote but leaving it in the car and just using a smaller purse at the event itself. Then she has all the essentials close by, just in case.
Now let’s see how the three of us styled actual outfits for our trip to the Japanese Friendship Garden.
Lightweight Layers for the Haru Event
Lesley tends to run warmer than Charlotte and I and thus wore lighter layers for this outdoor event. The photo at the top of this post shows her sunglasses which she removed when we took these photos. She also didn’t bring a hat to this event, but let’s hope she is wearing sunscreen, LOL.
Her light layers consist of
1-Linen cropped trousers
2-Sleeveless tank top
You’ll laugh that these are the same linen cropped pants that I bought us from Old Navy last summer. At first, we weren’t sure we would love the style, but Lesley loved them so much that she bought them in olive green too.
And the crazy thing is that Lesley doesn’t like the color green, so that says it all.
Most “rules” will tell you that since the pants are flowy, you need a tighter top. Yet, Lesley’s outfit consists of a flowy kimono and voluminous pants, yet it works wonderfully together.
I think it’s because the focus of the look is the top half with the colorful tee, the print kimono, and the beautiful necklace.
Another factor that could help is the 2/3 to 1/3 proportion for the top half to the bottom half.
Lesley’s comfortable shoes of choice are these perforated Walking Cradles “Orleans” that are not only cute but extremely comfortable. Since they are a tan color, they blend in and put focus on her kimono and accessories instead.
She wore a long beaded necklace down the front of her t-shirt as an extra, and then her orange purse was worn as a cross-body when we walked around the event.
Jeans & a Jacket for What to Wear to an Outdoor Event
My mom is more than likely cold at her age and believes in layering. For her outfit for what to wear to an outdoor event on this March day, she opted for print jeans and a leather jacket over her turtleneck.
I just love that my mom has embraced print jeans and a leather jacket. Tell me this isn’t the coolest 80+-year-old you’ve seen lately.
Being extremely fair-skinned, my mom opted for a visor as her sun protection. Trust me, she also has chemical sunscreen on her face too because I gave her some of mine.
She wore a pair of comfortable sneakers in a color that coordinates with her jacket. These sneakers are the “Erin” from Jambu. All three of us have these same sneakers in different colors, and they are great footwear as what to wear to an outdoor event, especially if the event includes a bunch of walking around.
Wide-Leg Jeans and Long Cardigan
I’ve really been loving the wider silhouette of jeans that all the young girls are wearing. So I decided to try them with a long cardigan and see how it would look.
So basically, I copied the same overall silhouette as Lesley only with different pieces.
The top half to bottom half proportions are the same as Lesley’s and I think it looks good especially because the cardigan is open down the front.
This beautiful cardigan is from a local boutique called Naomi & Ruth. It’s not still available on her site, however, she is shutting down her store so she is having a fabulous sale. Make sure to go check out her sale and get some great treasures at a steal.
Instead of wearing a necklace on the solid-colored turtleneck, I opted to wear my belt bag as a sling purse instead across my body, but under the cardigan. To add a little extra to the look, I attached a small scarf to my belt loop.
The hat is not a sun hat per se since it’s felt, but it still does a good job of keeping the sun off my face. My mom will tell you that I stole this hat from her after she thrifted it, and she would be right. But I have worn it so much that I decided to keep it.
Insider tip: Even when you are wearing a sun hat, it’s good to wear sunscreen (right now, I’m using this one from Dime) because the angle of the sun may be such that your face will still get sun.
Also, notice those small gold balls on the lapel of my cardigan. These are the Glamour Maggie magnets-use code 15Jodiestyle for a discount. I am using them because the lapels were curling up and I wanted them to stay down.
Insider tip: You are the boss of your clothes, so if something about your clothing item is bugging you, there could be a “fix” for it. I wrote about my 5 essentials that help with clothing issues.
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