Trip Planning - 12 min read

What to Wear for a Boat Party (Top Outfit Ideas!)

Cait Kontalis

Cait Kontalis, Updated October 15, 2022

If you are invited to a boat party, the pressure is on you to find the perfect outfit. It can be tricky to dress for a boat party because you want to look stylish but also be comfortable and practical.

For women, wear comfortable flat shoes like Toms, sandals, or flip flops. For an outfit, women should wear a romper, wide leg pants, a skirt, or a jumpsuit. Accessorize with a hat or bandana. Guys should wear a light jacket or blazer, off-white trousers, with a button down or a polo shirt.

However, you may want to dress up a bit more for an evening boat party. A maxi dress or formal jumpsuit is always a good choice. A cute clutch and some statement jewelry will finish off your look perfectly. Gentlemen will look sharp with sports coats and dress pants.

This blog post will give you tips on what to wear for a boat or yacht party. We will help you choose clothes that will make you look and feel your best!

How Do You Choose the Right Outfit for a Boat Party?

There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing your outfit for a boat party. First, you will want to consider the location of the party. If it is taking place on a yacht in the middle of summer, you will want to dress differently than if the party is taking place on a small boat in the fall.

The season and location will help you determine what kind of clothing to wear. You will also want to think about the activities that will be taking place at the party. If it is a more laid-back gathering, you can dress casually. But if there will be dancing or other activities, you will want to choose an outfit that is comfortable and will not get in the way.

Finally, you will  want to make sure your clothing is appropriate for the weather. You will want to wear light, airy fabrics if it is hot outside. But if it is cold or windy, you will want to dress in layers to stay warm.

What to Wear to a Boat or Yacht Party – General Daytime Pieces

Daytime looks for a boat or yacht party are all about being chic and stylish but also practical. You will want to choose clothes that are comfortable and will not get in the way if you need to move around.

Linen

Anything made of linen will be perfect for a boat party as it is a natural fiber that breathes well. It is also wrinkle-resistant, so you will look good even if you have been dancing or moving around a lot. Linen is the absolute staple look of “fun on the water.”

Hats

A hat is a great way to protect your face from the sun and also add a bit of style to your outfit. If you are not used to wearing hats, now is the time to start! Choose a hat that matches your personal style, and do not be afraid to experiment.

Light-Colored Items

Wearing light colors will reflect the sunlight, which is perfect for days spent on the water. Plus, the lighter coloring pairs with the overall aesthetic of partying on a boat. White is always a good choice, but feel free to experiment with other bright colors as well.

Preppy Pieces

It is no secret that boat parties invoke a sense of “preppy style fashion” This can be anything from a seersucker dress to Panama hats. If you do not normally dress preppy, now is the time to try it out!

Sunglasses

Polarized sunglasses are a must for any boat party. Not only do they protect your eyes from the sun, but they also help you look cool and mysterious. Choose a pair of sunglasses that is comfortable to wear and that goes with your outfit.

Sweater or Stylish Windbreaker

Even if it is warm out, it can get chilly on the water. Bring along a sweater or windbreaker to keep you comfortable. Choose a style that matches your outfit so you will still look good, even if you have to layer up.

Daytime Boat Party Looks for Women:

Daytime boat party looks for women can  be anything from casual to preppy to chic. It all depends on the vibe of the party and what you are comfortable wearing.

Rompers and Jumpsuits

Rompers and jumpsuits are great options for a boat party because they are both fashionable and comfortable. They also will not get in the way if you want to dance or move around. Choose a romper or jumpsuit that is made of light, airy fabric to keep you cool in the summer heat.

A Matching Set

A matching set is another great option for a boat party. It is easy to put together, and you will look put-together and on trend. Choose a set that is comfortable and made of light, airy fabric. Matching sets can be anything from a crop top and skirt to shorts and a button-down combo.

Long and Flowy Dresses

Long, flowy dresses are perfect for a boat party. They also will not get in the way if you want to dance or move around. Plus, a longer dress will help avoid any unwarranted “Marilyn Monroe” moments on the windy open water.

Linen Pants

If you are feeling the “cool girl” vibe on your boat party day, linen pants are the way to go. They are extremely comfortable while still giving an air of confidence and fashion.

Blue Striped Shirt (Women)

There is something very nautical about pairing a horizontal blue-striped shirt with white pants. This is a timeless boat look that can be accessorized in many ways.

Wrap Skirts

Pair a wrap skirt with your bikini top or a cute fitted tank for a boat party-ready look. Wrap skirts are easy to wear and are very flattering on most body types. They can also easily transition to evening wear with the right blouse. 

Flat Shoes

Wearing high heels on a boat is a recipe for disaster. Not only will you be more likely to trip and fall, but you will also sink into the deck or dock. Instead, opt for flat shoes like sandals, espadrilles, or ballet flats. They will be more comfortable and practical, and you will not have to worry about losing your balance.

Swimsuit

Even if you do not go for a swim, having your swimsuit on hand is always a good idea. You never know when you might want to jump in the water or take a dip in the pool. Most importantly, choose a swimsuit that you feel confident in. Depending on the look, you can pair it perfectly with your on-deck outfit with a stylish cover up or as a shirt.

Waterproof Makeup

No one wants their makeup to melt or wash away while they are out on the water. Waterproof makeup is a must for any boat party. Choose products that will stay put in the heat and humidity and that will not come off if you get wet.

Oversized Straw Hats

Straw hats are a summertime staple, and they are perfect for boat parties (while protecting your skin!). Choose an oversized hat for maximum sun protection and style.

Woven Purse

A woven purse is a perfect accessory for a boat party. It is the perfect aesthetic for a daytime boat party; plus, it is big enough to fit all your essentials, like sunscreen, sunglasses, and waterproof makeup.

Daytime Boat Party Looks for Men:

Women do not get to have all the fun! There are plenty of top-notch daytime boat party looks for men.  

A Seersucker

A Seersucker, also known as “railroad stripe,” is a puckered fabric that’s perfect for summertime. A seersucker shirt is light and airy, which will keep you cool in the summer heat. Plus, it has a preppy look that is perfect for boat parties.

Chinos and Jacket

This is a great option for men who want to look stylish but also be comfortable. The chinos will keep you cool, and the jacket will protect you from the sun or wind. Choose a light-colored chino so you do not get too hot, and make sure the jacket fits well, so it does not blow around in the wind.

While light-colored options are generally preferred, a navy chino also works in a boat environment. Just be sure to pair it with a lighter colored top. 

Cropped Trousers and V-Neck T-shirt

Cropped trousers are another iconic boat party look for men. It is comfortable and stylish, and it will not get in the way if you want to move around or dance. Pair it with a V-neck T-shirt for a relaxed yet put-together look.

Tailored Shorts and a Polo Shirt

Choose light-colored and fitted shorts for a more “preppy” look. This is a particularly popular look for summer boat parties on the United State’s northeast coast (i.e., The Hamptons, Martha’s Vineyard, etc.). Choose a polo shirt that fits well and is made of breathable fabric. You do not want to be too hot while you are out on the water.

Half-Sleeved T-Shirt

This is a bit more casual take on the previous look. However, you can also roll up the sleeves for an even more relaxed look. Half-sleeved T-shirts generally pair well with chinos or cropped trousers.

Loafers or Boat Shoes

When attending a boat or yacht party, opt for loafers or boat shoes. They will be more comfortable and practical than your day-to-day shoes, and you will nt have to worry about losing your balance. Plus, they will help you look stylish and put-together. They are called “boat shoes” for a reason!

Panama Hats

A Panama hat is a must for any summer boat party. These hats can easily be styled with casual shorts and a polo, or go “Riviera style with a linen suit.

These are some great looks for a daytime boat party. Whether you are going for a preppy look, or something more casual, make sure you choose comfortable and stylish clothing that will keep you cool in the summer heat. Do not forget to accessorize with Panama hats, straw hats, and boat shoes!

What to Wear to a Boat or Yacht Party – Evening

Evening looks for a boat or yacht party are a bit more formal, but that does not mean you can not have fun with your outfit. Look your best while still being comfortable at sea.

Evening Boat Party Looks for Women:

When the sun sets, it is time to step up your fashion game.  

A Cocktail Dress

If you are attending a more formal evening event, opt for a cocktail dress. Choose a style that flatters your figure, and that is made of light, airy fabric. You do not want to be too hot while you are out on the water.

A Little Black Dress

A classic little black dress is always a good choice for an evening event. It is elegant and timeless, and it can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion.

Pearl Jewelry

Nothing says “out to sea” like a set of pearls. They are elegant and classic, and they will help you look put together. You can even wear casual pieces with your daytime yacht look. Just make sure they are real pearls!

Statement Earrings

If you are looking to add a little bit of sparkle to your outfit, opt for statement earrings. They will dress up any outfit, and they will help you stand out in a crowd. Just make sure they are not too heavy or bulky, so they do not weigh you down.

A Cute Clutch

Evening boat parties are the perfect opportunity to bust out that cute clutch you have been dying to use. Choose a color or pattern that compliments your outfit, and make sure it is big enough to hold your essentials (phone, lip gloss, etc.).

Evening Boat Party Looks for Men:

​​Gentlemen, it is time to step up your style game with your evening boat party looks. 

A Sport Coat or Blazer

For a more upscale boat party, you can not go wrong with a sports coat or blazer. It is the perfect way to dress up your look without being too formal. You can even pair a blazer with a well-fitted T-shirt for a more stylish yet casual look.

Dress Pants and Jacket

If you are attending a more formal evening event, opt for dress pants and a jacket. Choose light-colored pants, so you do not get too hot, and make sure the jacket fits well, so it does not blow around in the strong seaside wind. You can even pair a blazer with a well-fitted T-shirt for a more stylish yet casual appearance.

Button-Down Shirt

A button-down shirt is a classic choice for a boat party. It is comfortable and stylish, and it can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. Choose a light-colored shirt to stay cool in the summer heat, or go for a darker shade if you are attending a more formal event.

Khakis

You can not go wrong with a nice pair of khaki pants. They are comfortable and versatile, and they will help you look put-together. Choose a well-fitted pair of pants, so you do not look like you are swimming in them, and pair them with a button-down shirt or polo.

A Statement Belt

Whether you are wearing shorts or pants, a statement belt is a great way to add a pop of style to your look.

You can not go wrong with any of these evening boat party looks. Simply make sure you are comfortable and that you choose an outfit that compliments your figure. With the right outfit, you will be sure to turn heads at your next event. 

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