Spring’s events bring a joyful energy that can only be met with an equally dopamine-dosing wardrobe. From horse races and bridal showers to galas, graduations, and fundraisers, spring soirées are a colorful celebration of togetherness — and getting dressed is half the fun.

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The experts at The Cosmetic Market provided all makeup, with expert Leslie Moore, for today’s article.

As you plan your looks, remember that no matter the dress code or theme listed on the invite, there is always an opportunity to honor your own personal style. From ethereal fabrics to pops of lime green and lavender, boutiques are brimming with ways to have fun and personalize the season’s most popular trends.

To showcase some of our favorites, we spent a morning playing dress-up at one of Nashville’s newest and chicest event venues, AB. This space is absolutely gorgeous, as you will see!

three women pose with cocktails

Say hello to our fabulous models! Left to right, meet Jasmine Sweet, digital creator and marketing maven; Carina Jolly, realtor at Zeitlin Sotheby’s; and Mary Breen, website designer at Blueprint.Inc. | Styling by Carson Love + Makeup by The Cosmetic Market + Photography by Mackenzie Ryan

Looking for inspiration for a specific event? Use these links to jump ahead:

A New Take for the Races

You might traditionally think of sweet floral and gingham sundresses for Nashville’s Iroquois Steeplechase and the Kentucky Derby, but this year, color is king. Monochromatic separates and pops of neon and pastel are a fun way to infuse your look with a little extra life.

When the base of your ensemble is a solid color, seize the opportunity to add an unexpected color combination through your hat and accessories. Don’t be afraid to try out a new palette! I love finding new color inspiration from unexpected sources — maybe from a mixed bouquet of flowers or a patterned textile from a favorite pillow.

woman in purple dress and pink accessories poses in front of mural

This knit lavender dress pops with contrasting coral accessories, all available at Gus Mayer. The knit dress can be easily dressed up or down for various occasions.

woman poses in blue outfit and hat with green blazer

Monochromatic separates make a major statement and can be styled in a variety of different ways. Not to mention, it’s often easier to find separates that fit well as opposed to a dress. | Clothing from e.Allen; Blue clutch and fascinator from Gus Mayer

Rather than perfectly matching the color of your fascinator or hat, don’t be afraid to try out a little color-play. I love how we accessorized with different hues of blue here; it adds much more visual interest!

And, while a versatile dress is worth its weight in gold, keep in mind that sometimes, piecing together separates — like the tank top and shorts shown above — can be easier than finding the perfect dress. Not to mention, you can get a lot more use out of them in the future by styling them separately.

Bonus Tip: If you have a hard time finding the right colors for your hat or fascinator, you can always work with a local florist. Many florists can add fresh blooms to make your headwear sing perfectly. 

Patio Season Perfection

Outdoor get-togethers can be dreamy in the springtime but can also come with harsh winds and direct sunlight. From brunches to happy hours, a short-brimmed hat and flowy fabrics will be a girl’s best friend for any daytime affair. Find a hat that flatters your unique face shape. It will add an extra layer to your outfit, and your hair and skin will thank you for it.

Another underrated accessory that can totally transform a silhouette is a great wrap belt. It makes an instant statement, adding interest to a variety of pieces, and it doesn’t rely on holes and buckles to secure, so the fit is customizable.

blonde model in rusty orange colored dress, hat, and belt

Carina is perfectly styled for dressy-casual events in a rust-hued, one-shoulder sun dress, wrap belt, straw Panama hat, and brown leather handbag — all available at Oak Hall.

A Bride’s Shower, In Her Own Style

Wearing all white doesn’t mean your personal style needs to be muted. If a dress doesn’t feel true to you, try the clean lines of a chic jumpsuit. Staying on trend is as simple as adding an ethereal duster and pop-of-green shoe. I love that these pieces come together to create such a striking look, but they can also be worn separately in many other ways. This lightweight, versatile duster could just as easily be dressed down over a tank, a favorite pair of jeans, and flat sandals. 

woman posing in white jumpsuit in front of green background

In our chic bridal look, Carina is wearing a white jumpsuit and sheer duster from Oak Hall paired with a mini gold handbag from Gus Mayer.

Girls’ Night Out

Whether it’s a celebratory bridal event or a girls’ night out, show off your style in this season’s most on-trend palette. Shades of lime and lavender were spotted on all the runways during fashion month and can now be found all over the retail sales floor. I love the idea of going all in with a monochromatic set or suiting; however, pulling in a pop of color can be more approachable. Try adding contrast with your choice of shoe or bag.

candid shot of three women posing at bar in brightly colored outfits

On the left, Jasmine’s silky blue camisole, faux leather shorts, platform sandals, and lime green blazer are all from e.Allen. The bride’s ensemble is from Oak Hall, paired with green sandals from e.Allen. On the right, Mary’s lavender suit and beaded clutch are from e.Allen.

Best-Dressed Guest

Whether you’re attending a spring wedding, dinner party, or company cocktail hour, remember that every accessory is an opportunity to inject your style. Start with a base that fits you great (like this lovely lavender midi dress), then add layers of interest. I always plan on beating chilly air-conditioning with a third piece, such as a blazer, lightweight jacket, or wrap. Evening affairs call for smaller-sized bags, and I love how the cross-body straps can be easily removed from this feathered J.Lowery purse.

woman poses in lavender dress and lime green blazer

A fabulous on-trend dress can be elevated by a third piece — a blazer, lightweight jacket or scarf, and a statement-making bag. | Lavender dress & green blazer from e.Allen; J. Lowery feather bag from Oak Hall

The Star of the Show

Brandon Maxwell is the featured designer at this year’s Nashville Symphony Fashion Show, but his sophisticated yet easy-to-wear designs are ideal for any fabulous fundraising event you have on deck this season.

The billowing fabrication of this silhouette brings such an effortless feel to high-end design. Pale blue is a great base for fun color combinations; who knew that tangerine and lime could be threaded together so well? Polished-yet-relaxed pieces like this one also translate beautifully to weddings, luncheons, graduations, and more.

blonde woman walks in pale blue dress

This powder blue Brandon Maxwell dress, along with the woven lime green purse, can be found in Nashville at Gus Mayer. The strappy tangerine heels can be found at e.Allen!

A Real-Life ‘Holly Golightly’ Moment

Go full-on Breakfast At Tiffany’s-level chic at your next gala or black-tie wedding! We couldn’t help but think of that opening scene and the iconic cinematic moment when looking at the old Hollywood glamour of this gown. I’m personally in favor of long white gloves making a comeback! This timeless silhouette gets a modern makeover in one of spring’s favorite colors: robin’s egg blue. An off-the-shoulder neckline is a perfect canvas to showcase a touch of sparkle with delicate drop earrings. 

woman posing in formal pale blue gown at bar

Jasmine is the picture of timeless elegance in an off-the-shoulder formal gown and white gloves, while the robin’s egg blue brings her look “into the now.” Everything she’s wearing can be found at Gus Mayer.

Woman in off-the-shoulder dress, holding a cup of coffee.

Jasmine was channeling Audrey Hepburn in this Southern spin on Breakfast at Tiffany’s, complete with coffee and a croissant. We couldn’t resist!

woman getting makeup done

Read up on this spring’s makeup trends HERE — all products are available at The Cosmetic Market! Image: Mary Kathryn Hudson

Photographer: Mackenzie Ryan Photography
Stylist: Carson Love
Makeup artist: Leslie Moore of The Cosmetic Market
Wardrobe and accessories: Oak Hall, e.Allen, and Gus Mayer

And a special thanks to AB for hosting us in their beautiful event space!


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Carson Love
About the Author
Carson Love

Carson Love is a Nashville fashion stylist and wardrobe consultant who helps clients find their own unique style and encourages them to be unapologetically authentic.