Is it just me, or do you also start planning what you are going to wear to an event before you have finished reading the invitation? "We cordially invite you to celebrate the engagement of - - " and you are off, either to a store, a catalog or a website, maybe even your own closet, in search of the perfect dress, outfit, culottes (I wouldn't write it if I hadn't seen them on the mother of the bride). I do recommend at least skipping to the bottom of the invite to check for some version of the phrase "black tie attire requested" before hitting the store /catalog /internet /closet. If you are really good at delaying gratification, you might even read the middle of the invite to see whose event it is your festive attire will ostensibly be helping to celebrate. But you can go back and do that later, really.
So here is what I have chosen for someone's upcoming engagement party. I do love Antrhoplogie, but I can so very rarely afford their stuff and so I spend more time with their younger, less-heeled sister, Urban Outfitters. But when you need a dress for an event, sometimes you do need to kick it up a notch. This one is only $60. I plan to pair it with some jet beads and retro funky shoes. What's-her-name and her fiance will be so pleased!