The Ultimate 2024 Guide to What to Wear to a Picnic

outfit ideas for a picnic

Last updated on December 31st, 2023 at 09:09 pm

There are no specific rules for what to wear to a picnic. However, there are a few things to consider when picking an outfit. In this guide for women, we are sharing some picnic outfit ideas, as well as things to consider when choosing an outfit. The key is to stay true to your personal style and preferences when deciding what to wear to a picnic. 

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Key Things to Consider When Deciding What to Wear on a Picnic 

The first thing to note is that you have the freedom to express yourself in the way you dress for a picnic. That being said, the following are a few important things to consider when figuring out the best outfit choices for you. 

Consider the Style of Clothing 

Dressing for the occasion is important. Most picnic setups lean on the casual or semi-casual side. Therefore, it is safe to say that a  picnic would not be the perfect time to wear a more elaborate style of outfit such as a ball gown, right? An outfit that allows for movability and maximum comfort is a perfect choice for a picnic. 

Consider the Type of Fabric

Given that most picnics are held outdoors, it is a great idea to consider the type of fabric that will allow you to withstand the elements. Spring and summer picnics will call for loose-fitting, lightweight fabrics for a breezy outfit. Fall and Winter picnics will call for heavier fabrics. 

Consider the Picnic Activities 

If your picnic will involve outdoor games that include physical activities like playing frisbee, running, etc, you may want to choose an outfit that allows for this. Additionally, it is a great idea to choose footwear that is sturdy and comfortable. 

Consider the Picnic Location

The picnic location will also determine your outfit choice. An al fresco (outdoors) picnic may call for certain outfit considerations. For example, consider layering clothes for a beach picnic given the ocean breeze. You may need a jacket for a mountain/hilltop picnic. If at a local park, you may want to keep your outfit simple as fancy embellishments can get stuck in a deck chair. 

Consider the Time of Year

Different outfit choices will apply for the various seasons of the year. Spring and Summer picnic outfits will differ from fall picnic outfits, given the change in outdoor temperatures. 

Consider the Time of Day 

In the spring or fall months, you may need warmer clothing for a picnic that is later in the day. In the summertime, known for super hot days, a couple of hours outside can leave you exposed to harsh sun rays. Therefore, accessories such as sunglasses and floppy hats for sun protection are important.

Consider the Picnic Setup Style and Aesthetic 

There may be a specific picnic theme such as rustic, luxe, etc. Or perhaps it is a bridal shower, baby shower, etc picnic with a specific color scheme. If that is the case, it is a good idea to choose an outfit that is in alignment with the picnic theme.

Additionally, consider the picnic setup. You would choose a different outfit for a picnic that is set up on the ground compared to one set up on a picnic bench.  For example,  if your outfit has embellishments, these could get stuck on picnic benches. If your picnic setup is on the ground, you may want to choose an outfit that will allow you to comfortably sit on the ground. 

Consider the Occasion

Certain occasions call for a specific dress code. For example, for a corporate work picnic, mini skirts, mini dresses, tight skirts, short shorts would not be appropriate. Whereas the same outfit choices would be perfectly fine for casual gatherings. 

What to Wear to a Picnic: Picnic Outfit Styles To Consider 

We all have different styles and outfit preferences—that is the beauty of it all. The following are some great options to style a cute outfit for a picnic date or just a general picnic day.

Tip: have an emergency stain remover handy for any food or drinks spills.

Boho Picnic Style

An option to consider for a Boho stylish picnic outfit is a printed picnic dress for sunny days. Earth tones are also great options for boho looks.

Boho style outfit

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Vintage Picnic Style

A gingham dress can be the perfect picnic outfit for a vintage vibe. Additional options can be a midi dress, midi skirt, as well as puff-sleeve dresses, etc. The best part about vintage style is that it never goes out of style!

Tip you can source vintage items that are in good condition from resale stores.

vintage picnic outfit

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 Minimalist Picnic Style

Minimalist outfits may be simple, but they can still make a powerful style statement. Some options include white dresses and white sneakers, a white tee, neutral hue tank tops, linen shorts, flat shoes, etc.   

minimalist outfit idea

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Elegant Picnic Style

An example of an elegant picnic style would be a maxi dress paired with comfortable heels. It makes for a chic picnic outfit.

elegant picnic outfit idea

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Casual Picnic Style

For a casual day picnic, a simple look can still be a cute picnic outfit. Some casual outfit ideas that can be a good choice include a linen shirt dress paired with ballet flats, basic tees and comfy sandals or flip flops, etc.

casual picnic outfit

Preppy Picnic Style

The preppy style could be considered business casual with a dash of extra sassiness. Some outfit options include straight-leg pants as well as lightweight blazers, etc.

preppy outfit idea

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Sporty Picnic Style

Some examples of outfit choices can include a plaid shirt, denim jacket, white tank, basic tees, Bermuda shorts, crop top, etc.

sporty picnic outfit

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Artsy Picnic Style

The beauty of an artsy style is that you can be as creative as you want to be. You can transform items such as a cute top and shorts combo, maxi skirt, etc into a unique artsy style.

Artsy style outfit

Western Inspired Picnic Style

For a western-inspired style, some style options you can consider include sleeveless tops, denim shorts, as well as cowboy boots, and more.

western inspired outfit for women

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Vibrant Picnic Style

Some options for a vibrant style can include a floral dress or other bright colored maxi style summer dresses, bold prints and so much more.

Vibrant picnic outfit for women

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Romantic Picnic Style

For a romantic style, you can create a cute outfit with pieces such as fitted dresses, short skirts, comfortable high heels, and much more.

romantic picnic outfit idea

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Final Thoughts About What to Wear to a Picnic 

To reiterate, the best way to style a picnic outfit is to create a unique picnic look that is true to you. The bottom line is, fashion is what you buy, and style is what you do with it.

In conclusion, it is our hope that you have found these picnic outfit ideas helpful. Whether you’re dressing for a family picnic, corporate company picnic, a casual gathering, and everything in between. May this guide help you on your journey to find what to wear on a picnic. Also, may your next picnic be the stuff dreams are made of!

P.S. If you found this post helpful or want to save it for later, please pin it on Pinterest! Thank you. 🙂

picnic outfit idea
summer outfit ideas for a picnic

One last thing, check out our other picnic guides. 

Find ideas for a picnic date in our Picnic Date Ideas Guide

Check out our What to Bring on a Picnic Guide

Find picnic spots in our Best Picnic Spots in Dallas Fort Worth Guide

Read our Top Luxury Picnic Companies Guide before you book your next picnic

Happy Picnicking!

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