Let's say you are currently wearing clothes only appropriate for indoor or should I say ''only good when your at home clothes'', and then your mother has asked you to:

have on outdoor clothes or have on outerwear because you and your immediate family are eating out.

Is this clear?, I mean, to improve your get-up because usually indoor clothes are just shorts, tshirts, and underwear, so you have to change your clothes. What is the correct English word for it?


A useful phrasal verb is to dress up, which is used when people put on formal or fancy clothing for a special occasion. Despite containing the word dress, it is not exclusively associated with the female garment that's also called a dress; a man can dress up in a suit and tie.

An example of this phrasal verb in context:

Are you wearing those shorts to dinner, or do you plan to dress up?

Often, people are said to be all dressed up once they have put on those clothes, so the phrase you were constructing in your question could look like this:

...all dressed up because you and your immediate family are eating out.

The phrase dress up has a second, closely related meaning: it's used when children put on an outfit for fun or to pretend to be someone they are not. In this sense, it can also be a noun: "The little girl was playing dress-up with her mother's clothes."

  • It doesn't have to a formal occassion, so dressing up is not the term I needed, but thx anyway. Do you say: "change to casual wear coz' we're eating out''** in your country? – John Arvin May 23 '18 at 3:24
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    "Dressing up" isn't necessarily formal - it just means "nicer than your typical daily clothes." Casual wear is more of a marketing term than one used in everyday conversation, so while people would understand it, it's not something that most people would say. Instead, dressing down is the opposite of dressing up. – Canadian Yankee May 23 '18 at 12:01
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    You can also use dress without a preposition to mean, "put on appropriate clothes." If you tell your children to "dress for dinner," then that means that they should change out of their play clothes and wear clothes that are appropriate for a restaurant, even if that restaurant is very casual. – Canadian Yankee May 23 '18 at 13:11
  • One more, coz I still doubt it hehe. How about: ''dress up a bit, coz' we're eating out at a restaurant"? – John Arvin May 23 '18 at 13:51
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    Yes, that certainly means to put on slightly nicer clothes. – Canadian Yankee May 23 '18 at 16:51

Attires are broadly divided into two categories


Casuals are what we wear daily. It may include comfortable clothing such as shorts. On the other hand, formals are the ones wore in special events and occasions such as ceremonies and conferences etc.

As the time passed, people started wearing casuals outside as well. In movies, resorts, and other leisure places, you find people wearing comfortable clothes. Then, there was another term introduced for clothes wore at homes - home wear.

A wide range of home wear products are available on the Internet. There is a little difference left between casuals and home wear these days! If I'm in my home wear and asked to go to a shop which is very nearby, I won't bother changing my clothes because they are actually casual! The best example I could think of is pajamas.

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