By Maureen Mancini Amaturo


Exams, college applications, acceptances, and internships are settled. Now, for the important stuff. What to wear to graduation? And the parties? 


Wear what expresses your personal style, is comfortable, appropriate for the occasion, and works under your grad gown. Girls, a dress in any classic silhouette will work. Light colors and white are top choices. If you prefer color, remember GREENERY, a cross between lime and peridot, is the 2017 color of the year–a fresh, crisp tone right for the temp and season. Guys: khaki, solid color, or dark dress pants, light dress shirt and tie (try the 2017 Greenery shade.) Short sleeves, or rolled up sleeves. The goal: smart, casual, and comfortable. An expressive tie can mean everything to your look. Remember, ankles and feet are visible. Flip-flops or torn-up sneakers just take the whole look down.  

You’ll be taking lots of pictures. Wear what makes you feel good and what you’ll feel good about when you look back at the pics someday.  


Guests, dress for the surroundings — indoor, auditorium, outdoor, stadium, the weather. Choose fabrics that won’t wrinkle, so you’ll look crisp in the after-ceremony photos. A classic, neutral palette is always right, i.e., white and gold. Wearing pants? Consider dark pants and shoes.    


The Dress Under The Grad Gown  

What’s underneath represents you. To help you decide: 

• The A-Line: Flatters every figure and is classic. It’s smooth under a grad gown and is versatile enough for any event. 

Interesting Necklines: Find options that will add style and not compete with the cap and gown. Anything too complicated could be distracting. 


• Sheath: The robe is billowy enough. Avoid adding bulk. A sleek-fit dress works perfectly.  


•A Loose Midi will move with the robe and be comfortable. Great for all body types. Won’t cling.   




• Prints: Neutral, pastel, or white backgrounds work best. Avoid overwhelming patterns. Printed borders or subtle, classic all-over prints are best. 


• Maxi or Jumpsuit: Both are so trendy and will be sleek and comfortable under your robe. Or try a long skirt and cold-shoulder top. They’ll look hot in photos…but may also feel hot while you’re sitting through the ceremony. Check the forecast first.


•The Party: Ideally, find one dress that works for ceremony and celebrations. If not, choose a dress for the daytime/ceremony and a more wow-packed dress for partying with friends.  


<<The Shoes>> 

With everyone wearing the same grad gown, shoes can define your look. They’ll be visible, especially when you walk to receive your diploma. 


Be able to stand in them for hours.                                                             

Be sure you can walk on grass or dirt. (Or try Solemates heel protectors.)                                                                              

Don’t wear new shoes for the first time that day.                                                     

High heels add elegance and stature and make you feel confident. BUT, in this case, ballet flats or adorned slides may be better. If you want height, try    wedges (won’t sink into grass or sidewalk cracks.)                                                                                                       



• Leave bags at home. Wear something with pockets to carry small items, keys, and cell phone. Consider a wristlet or small clutch if you must. 

• Dress comfortably. Graduation ceremonies are a combination of standing and sitting…and are long.

• Consider light layers instead of a jacket.



• Don’t think that because you’re wearing a robe it doesn’t matter what you’re wearing underneath.     

• Don’t wear new shoes. Avoid shoes you’re not used to walking in (and heels if on grass or climbing stadium steps.) Your walk across the stage should be confident, no worries about slipping or tripping.  

• Don’t spend tons of time styling your hair. You’ll be wearing that cap. Try your hairstyle with your cap prior to graduation.   


All fashions at Great Stuff in downtown Rye.


• Flats/low heel










Dimensional floral lace with deep-V back from Sea

Norma Kamali jumpsuit with trench coat details 

True blue Remy Brook lightweight mini 

Remy Brook minis in alternate colors, including a trendy green

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