Home > What To Wear To A Chic Gala Affair

What To Wear To A Chic Gala Affair

As a proud supporter of the Canadian Liver Foundation (CLF), you better believe I scooped up a couple of tickets to the Foundation’s Ottawa LIVERight Gala taking place on November 1, 2019.

You see, liver disease has directly affected both sides of my family. My father suffers from polycystic kidney disease and underwent a kidney transplant two years ago. Sadly, the disease spread to his liver.

Dominique Baker smiling while wearing a black dress

Donating to the CLF assures that the charity has the funds to continue supporting important research…something that it has been succeeding at for 50 years now. FIFTY YEARS! Their efforts have led to breakthroughs in liver research, changes in health policy, on-going education for hematologists and free support services for both patients and caregivers.

So to celebrate their golden anniversary, the Foundation will be holding a fabulous party at Lago… and it will be an affair to remember for sure.

As an occasional stylist, one of the most frequent questions clients ask me is “What exactly do you wear to a gala?”. I thought I’d put together a list to help you get all dolled up for your own formal soirée.

Dominique Baker holding a red rose while wearing a black dress
  1. Etiquette for a gala generally dictates that you wear an evening dress or gown. Black-tie galas call for floor-length dresses, but you can rock that very gala-worthy cocktail-dress to a black-tie optional or semi-formal event. Feeling super stylish? Put on a great tux and forego the shirt underneath…or wear that tuxedo shirt and bow tie too. WARNING: do not wear a bowtie without a shirt. Too Playboy bunny!
  2. When you’re thinking “gala”, grab your hottest pair of sleek heels. Sexy high-heeled sandals will do just fine too.
  3. I love myself a great, luxe clutch with formal wear. Some can get pretty tiny which just doesn’t work for me and I suspect, won’t work for others too unless they have a date with extra pockets! Clutches that are big enough to hold my phone are winners all around. There are so many lovely cutches out there too. Good luck trying to pick just one!
  4. Jewelry – MY FAVOURITE! Now is your chance to rock that statement necklace, heirloom jewels just dying to be taken out of their velvet box or luminescent pearls. There are also tons of really modern options from great homegrown jewelers like Biko and Birks.

My dress, shoes and accessories are all picked out for this fun event, and I cannot wait to see what you choose to dazzle in too!

The Ottawa LIVERight Gala 2019 takes place on Friday, November 1st, 2019 at Lago Bar and Grill, 1001 Queen Elizabeth Driveway, Dow’s Lake, Ottawa.

The reception is from 7pm – 7:30pm and the gala’s program starts at 7:30pm. Tickets are $65 a person up until end of day October 18th, and then the price goes up to $75. Your ticket includes hors d’oeuvres, access to food stations, grazing table, silent auction, entertainment, and more!

The night will also feature great laughs by entertainer and former NFL Miami Dolphins player, Mark Hatfield. You’ll also have a chance to meet the healthcare professionals making a real difference in our community and country, and dance the night away with beats spun by DJ Law, Brian Boswell. Remember him and Tom Green from Check The OR?? Yesssssss….

Get your tickets here. See you November 1st!

*Photography courtesy of Salt ‘n Streets Photography. All jewelry provided by Birks.

Dominique Baker
Dominique Baker

Dominique is a Canadian-based fashion and beauty influencer with a strong voice in Ottawa’s black community. Since launching her blog Style Domination in 2015, she has amassed a global fanbase. Dominique shares her life through beautiful imagery and compelling story-telling that speaks to her fans on a personal level. She’s been featured in The Guardian, Flare, The Kit and Cityline. She also hosts events for Dress for Success, the Gem Conference, and has been named a United Way Person 2 Know for the past three years.

Find me on: Web | Instagram


  1. October 16, 2019 / 8:55 am

    Love this look and a wonderful cause. Thank you for always sharing good content!

    • Dominique
      October 16, 2019 / 9:41 am

      Hi Shirley!

      You’re welcome and thanks for your kind comment!

  2. Dorcas
    October 17, 2019 / 12:07 am

    Wow! This looks beautifully effortless. I love the Rose flower detail. Great piece.

    • Dominique
      October 21, 2019 / 10:01 am

      Thank you, Dorcas! I do love that rose picture.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.