Wedding season is upon us! With our calendars already filling up, we can’t help but wonder about what to wear! It starts as a fun task, but can sometimes leave us feeling frustrated and uttering the phrase “I have nothing to wear.” But not anymore! With these simple guidelines, you’ll eliminate the stress and end the nightmare. You will be the ultimate best-dressed guest!
First, let’s go over the ground rules:
- No white! Or ivory! Or champagne! Regardless if it is a day or evening wedding, let the bride have her day and avoid these hues.
- No lace! I know, I know, so many dresses today are covered in lace but again, the bride may wear an all lace dress.
- If you know what color the bridesmaid dresses are, stay away from anything too matchy matchy.
- Don’t wear anything inappropriate, too short, or too low cut; a wedding is a classy affair. If it’s shorter than your fingertips when placing your arms at your sides, then it’s too short!
- Pay attention to the dress code mentioned on the invitation (if there is one)
Now you may ask what those dress codes actually mean and how that translates to how you should plan your attire? Let’s cover the basics so that you are prepared.
Black Tie (the most formal dress code you will ever face). It is customary to wear floor length gowns, however in this day and age some exceptions can be made. It is acceptable wear a cocktail dress, however if you go this route make sure to keep the colors rich (black, jewel tones, chic metallics, brown) so as to not look too casual. Women can wear a floor-length gown in a lighter shade since the silhouette is inherently dressy. Choose a dress that will hold up alongside a room full of men in formal tuxedos. White gloves are even appropriate! Think ultra fancy ball.
Formal or business formal a long dress or formal cocktail dress usually in a dark or neutral tone. No need for long gowns or gloves, but no dresses should hit above the knee. Also, stay away from anything low cut or skin bearing. A nice blazer or sweater is a perfect idea for cool weather weddings.
Semi formal or casual dressy or business casual a dressy skirt and top or cocktail dress. Have fun with bright colors and exciting prints. Hemlines can be shorter, but still stay away from anything too inappropriate. I always stick to the “bend over” rule. Try bending over and see if your anything shows under your dress that shouldn’t. If it does, then say no because you won’t be comfortable either.
Casual a summer sundress, skirt, or pants and a top. But no jeans or denim shorts! Black shorts (think dressy) are acceptable if styled with the right jewelry and heels.
If no dress code is stated, consider where the wedding is being held. If it’s a church, that might mean a pashmina to cover up during the ceremony. If it’s outside, prepare according to the weather predictions and layers are always a good idea! Don’t show up in black tie, but also don’t assume it’s casual. Choose a good in-between outfit.
Now that you know the do’s and don’ts, let’s talk about what’s trending now!
Floral is always a safe choice for spring and summer daytime weddings!
Midi dresses are the perfect mix between formal and casual. These hit mid-calf. Remember nothing above the knee for formal weddings!
If the dress code is dressy casual or casual, a maxi dress is a fun way to mix it up. Make it look dressier by adding bold jewelry and a wedge or heel.
A light and airy dress will be perfect for dancing the night away!
If budget is an issue, think about having a dress swap party with your friends! Everyone brings a couple of dresses they’ve already worn and then you all switch with each other so you never run out of new options.