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*2023 15 looks!*What to REALLY wear to Kennedy Center? (all formality)

*2023 15 looks!*What to REALLY wear to Kennedy Center? (all formality)

Wondering what to wear to Kennedy Centre? Here’s the right place if you are looking for 15 real-life outfit inspo and pro tips!

Known as one of the most prestigious and busiest art Centres in the US, you can enjoy a wide range of performances from concerts, and comedy shows to Broadway productions in Kennedy Center.

And guess what, even if you are not interested in performing arts, there‘s a free docent-led tour for you to get a taste of exploring the story behind the Kennedy Center.

what to wear kennedy center
Source: Pinterest

And for the people who just want a nice place to chill and relax, well, Kennedy Centre is the perfect spot as well!

So yes, regardless of your purpose, a visit to the Kennedy Centre is always a lovely idea for a well-spent weekend.

That said, I’ve gathered 15 looks depending on the activities and formality. Enjoy!

1. What to wear to the Kennedy Center symphony

While there’s no specific dress code, you should dress accordingly for the event you attend.

If you’re going to a Broadway show or symphony at night, feel free to dress up to show your respect to the performers.

For gentlemen, a nice suit and loafers can never go wrong.

To add an extra pop of fun to this artsy night, go for a bold red blazer as a statement piece!

2. What to wear to the Kennedy Center opera house?

For ladies, an LBD or nice midi dress is always a safe bet. Together with nice pumps and a dainty clutch, this musical show get-up is a 10/10.

3. Wear jeans to Kennedy Center

So here’s the most asked question: Can I wear jeans to Kennedy Center?

Yes, you can.

However, there’s something you should always keep in mind.

First thing first, no ripped and distressed jeans that can appear too casual.

Second, pay attention to the color.

Stay away from the light-wash mom jeans and gravitate towards darker shades like black and dark blue jeans for a decent look.

Or else, you can go for the classic white and cream jeans – they look effortlessly elegant.

To finish the look on a dressier end, team it with a chiffon blouse or peplum top together with pointy shoes and Viola– this is how you wear jeans in a classy way!

4. What to wear to Kennedy Center Rooftop Bar

Even if you are not here for the performing art show, let’s not forget Kennedy Center is a nice spot for some Instagrammable shots!

For a cool-girl look, make sure you have your sunglasses and biker jackets with you ♡♡♡

5. Go matchy with your girl pals

If you are running out of ideas, dress according to the show!

For example, many ladies wear pink when they watch the Mean Girl musical because pink is the signature color of the main characters.

How cute!

6. Bring outerwear to the Kennedy Center

Regardless of the season, bring outerwear with you to ward off the air-co chill.

Depending on the formality, choices like a formal bolero jacket, light cardigan, and scarf are all doable.

Trust me, you just can’t fully enjoy the show if you’re freezing cold for 2.5 hours straight.

Such a nightmare.

7. What to wear to the Kennedy Center in winter?

When the days are chilly out there, feel free to layer up your summer cami dress with a cropped sweater for a fresh look!

8. What to wear to the Kennedy Center opera?

For a formal look, a maxi coat just works wonders to elevate the whole look.

To dress for a prestigious place like Kennedy Center, opt for jewel tones like violet, ruby, and emerald to match the theme.

9. Kennedy center casual dress code

If one piece is not your cup of tea, pair up a high-neck top with a pattern maxi skirt and boots to look equally chic and flattering.

If you are petite like me, definitely try the monochromatic style.

Wearing similar shades just elongates the figure and makes you appear to be taller and slimmer.


10. What to wear to the Kennedy Center in winter

If you are watching a musical during winter, a velvet dress just screams the best vibes.

Featuring the butter-soft and shimmery fabric, you just look effortlessly polished and feminine.

I’m loving this affordable velvet dress that is super flattering and leg-elongating ♥♥♥

A big V-neck, belly-forgiving ruching design and inverted hemline ALL IN ONE? Such a dream.

Update (NOV 18): Woah I’m overwhelmed by how many of you clicked and bought this dress!

This is so random… BUT

hey ladies, why not quickly do an affirmation and feel instantly better?

This new year, I’m trying not only to share fashion tips but come up with ways to instill body positivity in all women who are reading my articles – aka YOU!

Instead of just reading it, say it loud or murmur the quotes (if you are in public) to maximize the effect.

Ready? Here we go.

I love my body. She is my forever home and sanctuary.

Sassy isn’t a shape, it’s an attitude.

Work out because I love my body – not because I hate it.

I can love myself and change my body at the same time. No guilt about that.

It is completely normal to have tummy rolls. I come to realize that social media isn’t showing the reality… at all.

My happiest moments in life had nothing to do with the way my body looked.

I don’t have to be pretty like her, I can be pretty like …ME.

I AM perfect imperfection.

What are your thoughts on that? I hope that makes you feel better (as you deserved).

Please help me pass the body positivity message in your community. #womenhelpwomen

Alright, now keep on reading!

11. What to wear to the Kennedy Center Honors

If you are invited to Kennedy Center Honors, slipped into the best black tie for a glamourous Saturday night.

For ladies, go for a gown and a nice hair-updo to feel the best. To finish off the look on a dressier end, a nice pair of statement earrings will make you feel the best.

For guys, think black bow-tie, white formal shirt with wing collar, leather shoes as a failproof.

( ´ ▽ ` )ノ MY OCT PICKS !! ʕ•̬͡•ʔ

(Continue scrolling for the article!)

ysl clutch
This YSL clutch screams the IT girl vibes. The best part? The price is *so forgiving*
pheromone perfume
Obviously, this pheromone perfume (Amazon bestseller) is for the ladies who wanna spice things up (Got you gal!)
black girl dark skin makeup
Get a FENTY BEAUTY contour stick on Sephora ♡ (REAL inclusivity brand)
ysl mini shoulder bag
Get this YSL mini shoulder bag on Net-A-porter

12. Forgiving peplum dress for the broadway show night

As a girl with food baby 24/7, a peplum dress is such a god sent to make me feel put-together.

Featuring the extra stripe of fabrics gather around the waist, it just completely covers my belly and fakes an hourglass shape for me.

This high-collared dress below is just as sexy as it looks forgiving. Check it out!

13. What to wear to Kennedy Center plus size

Of course, here’s my pick for my plus-size queens. Enjoy!

14. What to wear to the Kennedy Center Honors

You will never overdress for the Kennedy Center Honors.

Go all in with sequins ladies!

15. What NOT to wear to Kennedy Center

What NOT to wear to Kennedy Center
Source: 1,2,3

Last but not least, let’s talk about what NOT to wear to the Kennedy Center.

  • NO big hat that will possibly block the view of the people behind you
  • NO tight bodycon dress: The show can last for hours and that’s a real torture to sit in a restrictive dress
  • No mini dress – Save them for the Friday clubbing nights with your besties
  • Bring a scarf or poncho ALL YEAR ROUND: Survival tip

Side note, if you are wondering about the bag policy, you don’t need to have your bags checked to attend shows at the Kennedy Center.


So there you go – the 15 outfit ideas if you wonder what to wear to Kennedy Center.

What are your thoughts on that? I hope these outfits get you inspired!

If you are looking for more specific styling tips, check out the articles below! See you there loves!

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