What Are the Most Flattering Empire Waist Dress Styles for Business Dinners?

In the world of fashion, empire waist dresses hold a special place. With their cinched waistline just below the bust and a flowing skirt that glides over the body, these dresses celebrate femininity while offering unrivaled comfort. They are versatile, timeless, and can be worn to various occasions. But when it comes to business dinners, which styles of empire waist dresses will make you stand out? How do you choose a dress that accentuates your body shape and communicates your unique style? This article offers an in-depth guide to choosing the most flattering empire waist dress styles for your next business dinner.

Why Empire Waist Dresses are Perfect for Business Dinners

Before delving into the specifics, let’s look at why empire waist dresses are suitable for business dinners. The empire waist dress has a high waistline, usually beginning just under the bust. The rest of the dress then flows down, creating a silhouette that flatters most body shapes. It skims over the stomach and hips, which might be areas of concern for some women, and instead draws attention to the bust. This style is not only comfortable but also exudes a formal, sophisticated vibe that fits perfectly with the ambiance of business dinners.

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The empire waist dress is a versatile piece of clothing. It can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion and accessorized in a variety of ways to suit your personal style. It is easy to wear and does not restrict movement, making it a perfect choice for events like business dinners where you might need to move around, greet people, or even give a presentation.

Choosing the Right Empire Waist Dress for Your Body Shape

We all come in different shapes and sizes, and the same dress can look different on two people. Therefore, when selecting an empire waist dress, it’s essential to consider your body shape and what will best highlight your features.

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For women with a pear shape, a style that skims over the hips and draws attention to the upper body is ideal. A V-neck or scoop neck style can achieve this effect, while a cap sleeve or short sleeve can balance out the lower body.

If you have an apple body shape, go for a dress that doesn’t cling to the waist but rather flows down. A maxi or long dress can work wonders in creating a sleek, elongated silhouette. Opt for a dress with a detailed bust area – think ruffles or embellishments – to draw attention upwards.

For the rectangular body shape, a style that creates curves is the best. Puffed sleeves or a ruched bust area can add volume to the upper body, while a flowing skirt can give the illusion of a defined waist and hips.

An hourglass figure can get away with most styles, but a fitted bodice and a free-flowing skirt can best showcase the waist.

Dressing Up Your Empire Waist Dress

An empire waist dress is like a blank canvas – it can be styled in numerous ways to reflect your fashion sense. Layer it with a structured blazer or a delicate shawl, depending on the occasion and weather. Opt for statement jewelry – a chunky necklace or chandelier earrings – to add a touch of glam.

When it comes to footwear, both high heels and flats work with empire waist dresses. For a business dinner, you might want to opt for something more formal like a pair of strappy sandals or pumps. Remember, the key here is comfort, as you will be on your feet a lot.

Making Your Empire Waist Dress Work for Different Seasons

The beauty of the empire waist dress is that it can be worn all year round, with just a few tweaks. In the summer, go for a sleeveless or short-sleeve style in lighter fabrics like chiffon or silk. Pair it with sandals and a statement necklace for a chic look.

During the colder months, opt for an empire waist dress in a heavier fabric like velvet or brocade. Long sleeves will keep you warm and also add a touch of elegance to your outfit. You can layer your dress with a tailored coat or a stylish pashmina shawl for added warmth and style.

With these tips and insights, choosing the best empire waist dress style for your next business dinner should be a breeze. Remember, the goal is to feel comfortable and confident in what you wear. After all, when you look good, you feel good, and when you feel good, you can take on the world – or in this case, your business dinner – with aplomb.

Choosing the Right Length: Midi, Maxi or Short Empire Waist Dress

The length of your empire waist dress can greatly vary the overall look and feel of your outfit. Midi dresses are ideal for showcasing your shoes and giving a slightly casual yet elegant vibe, while maxi dresses encapsulate sophistication and formality, perfect for a black-tie business dinner. Short empire waist dresses, on the other hand, are playful and fun but might not be the best choice for a formal event like a business dinner.

Midi dress is versatile and can be worn at semi-formal business dinners. It hits anywhere from below the knee to mid-calf, offering a balance between formal and casual. Pair your midi empire waist dress with a strappy sandal or pump to create a chic look.

For more formal business dinners, a maxi dress is your best bet. The long, flowing silhouette of a maxi empire waist dress adds an element of drama and sophistication to your overall look. Pick a maxi dress with a floral print or a navy blue color for an added touch of elegance.

When choosing the length of your dress, always consider the formality of the event, the season, and your comfort. A maxi dress might be more appropriate for formal, winter business dinners, while a midi dress works for less formal, summer dinners. Remember, a well-chosen empire waist dress should highlight your assets, be it your bust, waist, or legs.

Prints and Patterns: How to Choose for Your Empire Waist Dress

Prints and patterns are another crucial aspect to consider when selecting an empire waist dress. They can significantly alter the perception of your body shape and add a splash of personality to your outfit. But remember, not all prints work for all body types, and it’s essential to choose with care.

Floral prints are feminine and timeless and can add visual interest to your empire waist dress. However, the size of the floral print can affect its impact on your body shape. Smaller, more delicate prints tend to flatter petite figures, whereas larger prints can be overwhelming.

Stripes can be particularly flattering on an empire waist dress. Vertical stripes can visually elongate your figure, making you appear taller and slimmer. Conversely, horizontal stripes can create curves and add volume, making them a great choice for women with a rectangular body type.

Polka dots, paisley, and other geometric prints can also work wonders on an empire waist dress. These patterns can add a touch of playfulness and style to your business dinner outfit. Just ensure that the pattern does not overpower the elegant design of the empire waist dress.

Whether you choose a solid color, a floral print, or a geometric pattern, ensure the design complements your body shape and reflects your personal style.


Choosing the perfect empire waist dress for a business dinner isn’t as daunting as it seems. By considering your body shape, the event’s formality, the season, and your personal style, you can find a flattering dress that makes you feel confident and beautiful. Whether it’s a navy blue maxi dress for a winter dinner or a floral print midi dress for a summer event, an empire waist dress is a versatile and stylish choice.

Remember to accessorize appropriately, choose comfortable shoes, and select a dress that makes you feel good about yourself. After all, at a business dinner, you want your confidence and personality to shine, and a well-chosen empire waist dress can do just that. So, go ahead and embrace the feminine elegance of empire waist dresses and make your mark at your next business dinner.