First dates can be scary enough, not to mention the added stress of trying to pick something to do and what to wear. To say I’ve been on a few first dates is an understatement. My general rule of thumb for a first date, especially with someone you’ve met online, is pick somewhere low key and where there are other people around in case the guy turns out to be a weirdo!

I believe a first date should be a fact finding mission. You want to learn about the other person and find out if there is any connection so it’s best to choose a place where you can easily talk. A movie, a concert, or anywhere loud is a bad idea.

Here are my top three first date ideas (and affordable outfits to go along with them):

– Drinks are great because it’s casual, there’s a lot of other people around, and a little alcohol will loosen you up (just stick to one drink!). For a date like this you could show your fun side. I’ve paired a fun, faux leather skirt, with a more casual and loose mint top, statement necklace and shorter heeled booties (to prevent any trips and falls!).

Quilted Sweater – TOPSHOP // Faux Leather Skirt – Forever 21 // Statement Necklace – Forever 21  // Cross Body Bag – Henri Bendel // Booties – Forever 21

Casual coffee is the first date option I chose the most when I was dating. It’s cheap, easy and there are a lot of people around. Plus, it doesn’t take too long to drink a coffee so if the date is going bad it’s easy to bail. If you’re more adventurous, you could go for a dinner date. The only drawbacks are that you will be stuck with your date for the duration of the meal and there is always that awkward song and dance when the bill comes. The outfit I’ve created below is perfect for coffee or dinner. It’s fun, but also shows maturity and class. It’s important to be a little sexy (think: leopard print tank and sky high heels) but at the same time you don’t give off the wrong impression, so add a blazer to make the outfit more grown up and structured. Cuff the sleeves of the blazer for a more laid back look!

Tank Top – H&M // Jeans – GAP // Blazer – H&M // Shoes – Aldo  // Watch – Michael Kors

A date at a local museum is a great idea if you are a little bit more shy. Since you will be walking around with a lot of things to look at, it will be easy to find something to talk about if there is a lull in the conversation. A lot of major cities offer free museum nights one night a week (Thursdays in Ottawa and Wednesdays in Toronto), which is even better because there is no confusion about who will pay. For this kind of date, you would want to wear a more comfortable shoe as you’ll be doing a lot of walking and bring a cross body bag you can throw on for no fuss.

Denim Top – (similar) Forever 21 // Faux Leather Leggings – H&M // Wedge Sneakers – Forever 21 // Statement Necklace – Forever 21 // Purse – Rebecca Minkoff
I would recommend for all your dates to dress in something you are comfortable in and don’t try to be someone you’re not. It’s important to be your authentic self because this is who your date will fall in love with. Now that you’re equipped with some ideas, get out there and have fun!'
Written by Tracey