Also found in: Dictionary.
Dressed or decorated fancifully or attractively, especially in a showy, garish, or tawdry manner. You sure got gussied up for the occasion! A tuxedo and everything! Samantha's always going around town all gussied up in those tacky dresses and cheap makeup.
1. To improve one's appearance, as by wearing fancy clothing and/or make-up. In this usage, a noun, pronoun, or reflexive pronoun can be used between "gussy" and "up." Why are you all gussied up? Is your boyfriend coming to visit today? I need to gussy myself up for the big event tonight.
2. To add something to something to make it fancier or more appealing. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "gussy" and "up." This room is so plain. How can we gussy it up for the big event?
Rur. dressed up fancy. All the girls got gussied up for the dance, but the guys wore their regular clothes. Mary really got gussied up. She even curled her hair.
gussy someone or something up
Rur. to dress someone or something up; to make someone or something fancy. She gussied the kids up for the wedding. See if you can gussy up this room a little before folks get here.
Also, all gussied up. Dressed up, as in Dana loves to get all gussied up and go to a fine restaurant. The origin of this expression is not clear, though possibly it relates to the earlier use of the noun gussie (derived from a proper name) for an effeminate man. [Slang; mid-1900s]
1. To dress someone in special or fancy clothes. Used chiefly in the passive or with a reflexive: We were gussied up in ball gowns. I gussied myself up for the party.
2. To add embellishing details to something in order to make it more attractive: The chef gussied up the meat loaf with a truffle sauce. The decorators gussied the room up for the ceremony.
mod. dressed up in one’s best clothing. (Folksy.) I like to get gussied up and go out on the town.
gussied up, to get (all)
To be dressed or to dress in one’s best clothes. This Americanism from the first half of the twentieth century is of uncertain origin. One theory is that it comes from gusset, a triangular piece of material put into a garment so that it fits better; this word in turn comes from the French gousset and dates from the Middle Ages, when such pieces were put into mail armor so that the knight it enclosed could move better. Because gussets might be considered a bit of fancy dressmaking, the theory holds, one’s best clothes would have more of them than everyday attire.