Femme Brunch Style: Casual Glam to Fancy Formal

Hold onto your eggs, we’re getting ready for Autostraddle’s International Brunch Weekend 8/23-24! Find a brunch meetup in your city or create your own by heading over to our events page. You can also load up on all things brunch by watching this space. From playlists to recommendations to personal essays, we’re writing all about the brunch experience. Get excited! BRUNCH.

Alright. You’ve found the brunch meet-up in your city, you are super excited to eat (and eat and eat) but one MAJOR thing stands in your way. You. Still. Need. To. Get. Dressed.

What does one wear to brunch? Considering how many different options there are as far as eating brunch, it’s no surprise that brunch style is what you make it. Whether you’re headed for high tea (and crumpets) or a greasy spoon affair followed by a hair of the dog Caesar, it’s your prerogative to look the part. We’ve sourced a myriad of femme of center options for you to stuff your face with hashbrowns and free-range eggs benny in! Just try not to spill on your fly outfit!

From Lydia (me!): My personal take on brunch dressing is fancy shoes + adjustable waist. Chances are you’ll be seated for an extended period of time, so your feet will have recovery time once you make it into brunch venue of choice. Punchy patterns and colors are a must because brunch is like, totally fun. Please note: this is not the time for body-con anything. You’ll regret any sort of tight, restrictive clothing. My secret? A breezy skirt with a drawstring waist. You want room for your food babies, don’t you?

brunch style 2014 1
I’m wearing: A thrifted duster coat, vintage skirt and tee, ASOS sunglasses and Swedish Hasbeens clogs

Nina G. gives us some Downton brunchin’ vibes for a fancy dining experience.

downton brunch

Dresses (1 and 2) and hat from Modcloth.

Okay so I’m one of those lazy people that gets up WAY too late to go to brunch, so I’ve created this whole mythology around it as something that fancy British people do in Masterpiece Theater period pieces. Shows like Downton Abbey come to mind, with the seriously drop dead gorgeous Lady Mary Crawley who always had a persnickety look to match her delicate white lawn dresses. If I ever wake up early enough to attend brunch, I’m going full out turn of the century realness. I’m talking white lace maxi dress, a straw hat and major inheritance drama.

Next up, Bevin has a casual take for late morning eats.

brunch style 2014 2

Brunch style to me is all about comfort and casual glamour. Right now I use scarves tied around my head with a big bow as a method of being super stylish without having to do my hair. I just put my hair up in a top knot bun, wrap a long scarf and tie it in a bow and use a couple of big bobby pins to secure it in place.

For outfits I like to use sheer vintage lingerie as an overlay. In this outfit I have a sheer yellow vintage polyester nightie over a black body con hip length shirt from Target maternity, a tight black skirt, a pair of leopard lace leggings and easy strappy sandals from crocs. They are very comfortable and I can walk really well in them.

Lastly, Tayler serves up sheer breakfast goodness!

I’ve lovingly termed this look “BB” or “Brunch Bitch.” I actually pieced this look together out of my real wardrobe with full intention to wear it out to brunch. I bought the Agent Provocateur Whitney bra for myself a few weeks ago by holding one hand over the price tag and using my other hand to hit “send payment” but that doesn’t mean BB has to be inaccessible! There are tons of strappy black bras out there right now like this Choux one I found for only $25. Keep it sleek with a sheer top to show off your fab bra and I like to pair it with a nice trouser. Add a simple black or white shoe and show up to brunch looking like a million bucks. Maybe a babe will buy you a mimosa or two.

Stay tuned for the dapper/masculine counterpart to getting snazzy for brunch!

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Lydia O

Lydia Okello is a feminist, body positive, queer personal style blogger. On her website Style is Style, she showcases her panache for bright colors and power clashing. When she isn't pawing over Samantha Pleet collections on Tumblr, she's dreaming about havin' a kitten of her own one day. You can find her on Twitter, Tumblr and on her personal blog.

Lydia has written 64 articles for us.


  1. IN LOVE with Bevin’s outfit. I would never have known those pink strappy sandals are crocs!

  2. Omg, Downton style. My hope is to have a brunch that’s a) all queer and b) entirely dressed in Downton Abbey costume-repros.

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