Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"
Jessica Beck
"Director of IELTS Training"

When it comes to IELTS Speaking, you need formal vocabulary!

What kind of vocabulary?

You could be asked about costumes or dressing up for special events on your test, among other topics.

In today’s episode we give you some key vocabulary words to prepare for this kind of question.

The importance of sharing personal details

Bring material from your own life to the IELTS exam, especially for the Speaking and Writing sections.

Share your ideas about the world!

Providing personal details is vital.

  • vital: absolutely necessary

Especially for Speaking Part 1 and Part 2, don’t sound like a brochure!

You don’t want to say generic things that could be stated by anyone.

Avoid these ways of speaking that will keep a score at a 6:

  • Mechanical
  • Robotic
  • Boring
  • Studenty

Think about personal details you can give and be ready to share your own stories!

This will set you apart from IELTS candidates that get a Band 6.

Strategies Created By a Former Examiner

3 Keys IELTS Online Course logo

100% Score Increase Guarantee with our Insider Method

Are you ready to move past IELTS and move forward with your life vision? 

Find out why our strategies are the most powerful in the IELTS world. 

When you use our Insider Method you avoid the BIGGEST MISTAKES that most students make on IELTS. 

Click here to get a score increase on IELTS. It’s 100% guaranteed.

Vocabulary related to dressing up

Attire: smart word for clothes

  • Makes you sound intelligent
  • Clothing that is not overly fancy


The men were all in business attire, and I was wearing shorts, so I felt quite out of place.

She said the attire would be casual for the party, so I wore a summer dress.

Formal wear: clothes that aren’t casual

  • Used to describe more dressy clothes
  • Worn at formal occasions, such as cocktail parties or weddings


He hates wearing formal wear, so he refused to go to prom.

Everyone at the wedding looked very sharp in their formal wear.

Garb: clothes, often a costume

  • Distinctive or different
  • Interchangeable with attire and clothes


The family members all wore black garb to the funeral.

I feel ridiculous dressed in this garb. Nothing fits and I look so frumpy!

  • frumpy: old-fashioned and drab; not stylish

Details to provide when discussing a costume

Describe the different parts of a costume using interesting specifics.

What kind of wig did you wear?

  • What color was it?
  • What was its length?
  • Was it itchy or uncomfortable?

If you were wearing armor, what was it made of?

  • Can be made of metal, plastic or wood.
  • Was it bulky and inconvenient to wear?

Were you wearing face paint or makeup, and what did it look like?

  • Describe the colors
  • What did your face end up looking like?
  • Can use the word hue to talk about the colors that were used.

Hue is a very useful word and can also be used to describe anything colorful, including landscapes and art.


  • As the sun set, the sky lit up with a crimson hue.
  • The hue of her eyes changed when she wore a blue shirt.

Add these new words to your vocabulary journal!

How can you apply this to the IELTS exam?

These unique words about dressing up can be used when discussing so many different topics!

Common topics for Speaking Part 1

  • Celebrations
  • Events
  • Family parties
  • Work parties
  • Cultural traditions and customs

Speaking Part 2

Check out our YouTube video on describing Halloween as a Part 2 topic.

You need two full minutes of material, so all of this vocabulary would help you have enough to say.

Sample IELTS Speaking questions

Think about how you would answer these questions.

Write your answer using the vocabulary from this lesson and additional interesting words, and then practice saying the answers out loud.

Part 1

What is a funny or interesting costume you have worn?

Do you have to wear a certain type of garb to work?

What is your favorite article of clothing?

Part 2

Describe a time you had to dress formally for an event.

Tell me about a time you were dressed inappropriately for an occasion.

Describe a favorite costume you have worn and the event you attended.

Part 3

Do you think it’s important to dress appropriately for specific functions?

What would you do if you arrived at an event and you were dressed too casually?

At the places you have worked, what type of attire did they require?

Helpful vocabulary lists

More than 100 new vocabulary words have been added to the vocabulary lists for the Personal Coach Gold Plan.

The lists are topic-specific so it is easy to find the words you need.

You also get a list of informal vocabulary to use in Speaking Part 1 and Speaking Part 2.

These more casual words can also be used when writing letters and any time you need to sound less formal on the exam.

Customized, organized vocabulary lists can save you so much time!

Use that time to study the vocabulary and be ready to use it on the exam.

Packages can be seen here!


It is so incredibly important to share stories and personal details on the IELTS exam. You need to be ready and have a set of vocabulary words for common topics like clothing and costumes.

For any topic related to clothing, use this interesting vocabulary to catapult your score to a 7 or higher!

Keep focusing on your study plan and work hard. You can achieve that 7 or higher that you are dreaming about.

What questions do you have?

Let us know in the comments section.

  • Badges (1)
  • Badges-1 (1)
  • Badges-2 (1)
  • US_ListenOn_AmazonMusic_button_black_RGB_5X
  • App-Store-Button
  • google-play-badge
  • Badges (1)
  • Badges-1 (1)
  • Badges-2 (1)
  • US_ListenOn_AmazonMusic_button_black_RGB_5X