Just curious if pretty sundresses and mules were good enough for casual dining. They sound so easy and lightweight and makes for simple packing.
Sundresses are fine for casual evenings. If "mules" are some sort of casual shoes, they undoubtedly also will be fine.
Now, if you are thinking of going to your ship's alternative casual dining on formal evenings so you don't have to bring dress clothes, I would encorage you to reconsider such a decision in the strongest terms possible. Here's why.
>> 1. On the formal evenings, the dining staff really pulls out all the stops. Those evenings consistently have not only the best menus of the whole cruise, but also special touches like the sorbet intermezzo between courses that even the main dining room does not serve on other evenings. On many ships, the casual dining option has its own menu and may even be a buffet rather than full service. If you skip the formal evenings, you'll miss out..
>> 2. On most cruise lines, "the prescribed evening dress is required throughout the ship, except in designated casual areas" -- and the "designated casual areas" are the alternative casual restaurant, the pool area (where one cruise line does offer "movies under the stars"), the gym, and perhaps the disco nightclub. If you don't dress for the formal evening, your options for entertainment will be very limited. Of course, there's always the dozen or so channels on your cabin television... that is, if the ship has satellite reception....
>> 3. Most cruise lines also hold classy events on each of the formal evenings that really do require formal attire. The Captain's "Welcome Aboard" Reception is always on the first formal evening. The events for other formal evenings may vary from line to line, but Princess has a really classy "after hours" event called the "Champagne Waterfall" where the waiters serve crepes souzettes and there's complimentary champagne on the last formal evening. Again, you'll miss out on some of the real highlights of a cruise if you don't dress for the occasion.
So do yourself a favor and bring your fancy dud's, too!
Yes Seabeacon, sundresses are perfectly OK, with mules, sandals or whatever. I would suggest a sweater or a shawl though, because I always find the dining room and theatres too cool for sundresses, or any dress without sleeves!