full dress

Also found in: Thesaurus, Wikipedia.
Related to full dress: white tie

full dress

Attire appropriate for formal or ceremonial events.

full dress

(Clothing & Fashion)
a. a formal or ceremonial style of dress, such as white tie and tails for a man and a full-length evening dress for a woman
b. (as modifier): full-dress uniform.

full′ dress′

1. the formal attire customarily worn in the evening.
2. a ceremonial style of dress.


1. formal and complete in all details: a full-dress uniform.
2. done or presented completely or thoroughly.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.full dress - formalwear consisting of full evening dress for menfull dress - formalwear consisting of full evening dress for men
evening clothes, evening dress, eveningwear, formalwear - attire to wear on formal occasions in the evening
morning coat, swallowtail, swallow-tailed coat - a man's full-dress jacket with two long tapering tails at the back
References in classic literature ?
He had just been to the cellar, and was in full dress too; that is, he had taken his gaiters off, and showed his little dumpy legs in black worsted stockings.
Beneath these they spread buffalo skins, upon which they stretched themselves in full dress, with caps, cloaks, and moccasins, and covered themselves with numerous blankets; notwithstanding all which they were often severely pinched with the cold.
His Majesty, in full dress, was accompanied by his royal Highness, M.
But when her father saw her in full dress and with all her jewels about her, he said to her in his own language, "What means this, my daughter?
In Marseilles you pay forty dollars for a first-class dress coat made by a good tailor, but in Leghorn you can get a full dress suit for the same money.
My dear Du Vallon," he said, "here you are in full dress most fortunately, for I am going to take you to the cardinal's.
She was in full dress this evening; and her appearance was certainly calculated to impress all beholders.
This head-gear, in conjunction with a pair of gloves worn within doors, she seemed to consider as at once a kind of armour against misfortune (invariably assuming it when in low spirits or difficulties), and as a species of full dress.
All three were habited in strict holiday costume; that is to say, they were wrapped up to the chins, and wore as many clothes as possible, which is, and has been, a stage-coachman's idea of full dress ever since stage- coaches were invented.
Feeling himself in duty bound to offer a copy of each volume, bound in red morocco, to Monsieur Rabourdin, he always came in full dress to present them,-- breeches and silk stockings, and shoes with gold buckles.
Jacquelin, Mariette, and Josette received orders to appear in full dress.
The shop was full of all manner of dresses and turbans, and Kim was apparelled variously as a young Mohammedan of good family, an oilman, and once - which was a joyous evening - as the son of an Oudh landholder in the fullest of full dress.