was always found to be wary of my appropriateness of the dress code. But as I took my allocated seat, in the welcome Black-tie Dinner hosted by Kathy at the majestic Ashmolean Museum, I learnt that Dress Codes do matter in Oxford, ever more than normal life.

I was somewhere in between awestruck and confident at the dinner. The architectural mastery of the Ashmolean Museum rose all the way to the ceiling. The statues and paintings that line the walls are captivating. At eye level, I greatly admired the well-placed knot of the black-tie across from me. It was settled on the throat of a Chinese American gentleman. I was considering the diversity of the crowd when I heard a tapping sound on the floor. I turned and saw a flash of signature red Louboutin heels.

As the learning, our British traditional formal dress code increased so did our acquisitions. Many of our wardrobes got new additions of Velvet Tuxedo or Patent leather shoes, Boutonnière and even Cummerbunds.

Bought my boutonnieres

Over the next two years, there were numerous dinners hosted at different locations. All the buildings were intricately designed and the dinners were decadent. Every occasion was a majestic experience. Although the dinners were intended for more official business, they became more about the fellowship. They were also a great excuse to spruce up our closets. Our closets acquired velvet tuxedos, patent leather shoes, boutonnieres, cummerbunds, and other elegant dress items.

Its the Conversation that matter

Most of our dinners began at the well-appointed Rector’s Garden. The welcome bubbly slid down our throats as we stood among the magical fully bloomed rose bushes and a 500-year-old stone gargoyle looked down on us. The fading of the sun brings with it the tinkling sound of the glass bell, bringing attention to the beginning of the feast in the candle-lit dinner hall.

Food and Fellowship

Each attendee takes a seat at the wooden tables and is served a crystal glass of Pinot Gris from Sussex. The casual conversation about the delivered food transfers to the ethical boundaries of privacy laws and Facebook. Too majestic and grandiose to forget, I capture some of the best aspects of Oxford Life.