Wedding season is starting to wind down just a bit, but it’ll definitely pick back up in the Fall. And, just like in the Spring, I expect we’ll see a lot of weddings this Autumn. Being a wedding guest is a ton of fun, but you should also dress appropriately. There’s nothing more embarrassing than showing up to an event over–or under–dressed.
So, with that in mind, here’s your ultimate guide for what to wear to a wedding.
Basic Wedding Guest Attire Do’s and Don’ts
First, let’s start off with some simple do’s and don’ts which go for any type of wedding you attend.
Wedding Guest Attire For Every Type of Wedding
Most of the time, the dress code for a wedding will be listed on the invitation. Even then, it can be hard to know what you should actually wear as a wedding guest. So, here’s a simple explanation of the various dress codes and what you should wear to every type of wedding.
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A casual dress code suggests a more laid-back affair. You can wear something lighter and more comfortable, like a simple sundress. Men can wear khakis and a dress shirt.
Unless the invitation specifically says semi-formal or formal, a beach wedding usually indicates a casual dress code.
The only real difference, then, is the location. For a beach wedding, you’ll want to wear something light and breezy. Brighter colors or florals are also a good option. And finally, since you’ll be outdoors, you can choose an elegant romper.
A semi-formal dress code suggests something in between “casual” and “formal.” You wouldn’t wear a sundress for this dress code, but you don’t need to go all out either.
Another common dress code you might see is Cocktail (sometimes referred to as “festive”). For many, semi-formal and cocktail are interchangeable, but others consider cocktail attire slightly dressier. Men, though, should opt for a suit and tie with this one.
A Formal or Black-Tie Optional dress code is one step above the cocktail dress code. Women should wear a floor-length gown or elegant cocktail dress. You can wear an ankle-length dress, but you should stay away from anything above the knee.
If you’re going to a Black-Tie Wedding, it’s a pretty fancy affair. Women should wear a floor-length evening gown. Ankles should not be shown. Men will need to wear a tuxedo.
White-Tie is the most formal dress code there is. It’s fairly rare, but it means you need to be as elegant as possible. For women, a floor-length evening gown is the norm. Men will wear a tuxedo with tails, a white shirt, white vest, and bow tie.