What To Wear To A Poetry Slam

Events leading to Poetry Slam

Poetry slam is an event which is the latest trend amongst poets and the literary lovers. The event simply consists of reciting a poem and showcasing it in front of other participants and the audience. It has been going on for decades and it is still continuing. It is the newest form of entertainment wherein poets can express themselves and can share their work with the others. The poets usually compete against each other by reciting their poems and then the audience decide who is the winner. The poets are judged on the basis of their performance, the poem’s content, delivery, and emotional impact.

What to Wear?

So, if you are into this type of poetry, you must be wondering what to wear at such an event. A poetry slam is a bit informal as compared to a formal gathering. So, it is always better to keep it casual. You must always remember that you are not attending a school or office, so don’t get too dressed up. However, it is suggested to not overdo it and keep it either elegant or casual. It is better to avoid bright and loud clothes and opt for outfits in darker shades.
If you choose to go elegant, you can opt for a long skirt, kurta, or dress shirt in moderate tones such as beige, blue or black. A light blazer, overcoat or wrap can make the whole look more classy and graceful. Pairing it with some nice heels or loafers would complete the look. You can also go for some eye makeup and a blusher.
On the other hand, for those who want to keep it casual, you can select a nice pair of jeans, khaki pants, or a skirt, and pair it with a basic tank top or plain t-shirt. Heels are not needed here, and you can opt for sneakers instead. You can add accessories if you want to create an impact. But try to keep the makeup minimum as you don’t want to look too overdressed for the event.

Appropriate Fabrics

Cotton, silk, wool, and other fabrics in plain designs are always great options for a music slam. For a more formal look, you can opt for chiffon and organza, which have a shiny look and they can add some glamor to your look. For those who prefer a more laid-back style, a good pair of jeans, a leather jacket and a loose-fitting top would work. If you want to stay warm, you can opt for jackets made of fabrics such as velvet, suede, and polyester.


Shoes and other foot accessories play an important role in dressing up for a poetry slam. While high heels and wedges may look elegant, they may not be comfortable for long hours at the event. So it is better to opt for flats, wedges, slip-ons for a more relaxed look. You can also choose to go for boots with an ankle length for those chilly evenings.

Jewellery & Accessories

If you want to accessorize, avoid heavy jewellery and opt for lighter, minimalist pieces such as earrings and necklaces. You can also add a scarf to enhance your look and also add a bit of warmth if it’s cold outside. A nice pair of shades can also add to your look.

Hair & Makeup

It is best to keep your makeup minimalistic and simple. You can opt for a light blush and mascara to accentuate your features. You can also use a tinted moisturizer or a foundation. A light lipstick and eye shadow would work too. Keep the lipstick in nude tones or any other subtle shades.
For the hair, straighten your hair or do a loose braid and leave some wavy strands across your forehead. You can also opt for a messy bun or left open your tresses if you have long hair.

Outfit Ideas

If you are attending a poetry slam with a group of friends, then you can opt for a classic denim and tee combo. Denim looks cool and chic and can be teamed up with a plaid tucked shirt and boots. For summer months, you can choose a basic tank top and a skirt and pair it with a light scarf or a stole.
If you want to opt for a more elegant look, you can select an A-line dress and pair it with an off-shoulder top or a plaid shirt. You can pair it with classic loafers or pumps.

Style Tips

When dressing up for a poetry slam, it is always better to stick to basic colors. Black and white can be timeless choices and they look good with almost anything.
Also, keep your look classy but comfortable. Poetry slams are generally long and exhausting, so you need to make sure that you can be comfortable in your outfit throughout the entire event.
It is also important to keep your jewels and accessories minimalistic. Go for lighter pieces so that you don’t end up looking overdone.

Final Thoughts

Attending a poetry slam is a great way to showcase your talent and share your work with others. When getting dressed, you should always try to look classy and stylish, yet comfortable. Opt for light and subtle colors to make a statement. You can also add accessories but make sure to keep them minimalistic. And always remember, it is not the clothes but the poem that will make the biggest impression.

Dannah Hannah is an established poet and author who loves to write about the beauty and power of poetry. She has published several collections of her own works, as well as articles and reviews on poets she admires. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English, with a specialization in poetics, from the University of Toronto. Hannah was also a panelist for the 2017 Futurepoem book Poetry + Social Justice, which aimed to bring attention to activism through poetry. She lives in Toronto, Canada, where she continues to write and explore the depths of poetry and its influence on our lives.

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