With wedding season in full swing, and guest restrictions being lifted, it's likely that you've received one if not more invitations to be part of someone's special day. But being part of that day also brings up the anxiety of knowing what to wear and what not to wear, after all, it's not your big day and all eyes need to be on the bride. While wedding rules and formalities have definitely changed over the years there are still some do's and don'ts that wedding guests need to navigate to find the outfit that's perfect for the occasion and won't distract the attention from the bride and groom.
So here's the lowdown on wedding guest etiquette that will get you through wedding season in style and not in trouble:
1. Pay attention to the invitation! Many couples make things easier for their guests by providing dress guidelines on the invitation. If they state 'black tie' then you need to wear evening wear and not a flowery sundress.
2. Pay attention to the venue! The type of venue for the wedding and reception dictates the attire that is expected. If the wedding is on a beach then the dress won't be as formal as if the wedding were in a hotel ballroom. If the ceremony is a religious service that takes place in a place of worship then it's important to respect any dress requirements that there may be. Some religions require specific headwear, and others require shoulders to be covered. Check with the bride and groom if you are unsure and those dress codes will be expected of the guests too.
3. Pay attention to the time of day! If the wedding is in the evening then the expectation is semi-formal or formal evening wear, whereas for a morning wedding, think sophisticated day wear.
1. Don't wear white unless the bride asks you to! This may seem like an old rule, but it still applies! The only person wearing white should be the bride unless she decides otherwise. This even includes head-to-toe off-white or cream. Let the bride have her day and choose another color.
2. Don't go overboard with the hat! Hats are still very popular for daytime weddings, and while you can wear a hat to a wedding you need to make sure it's not too OTT. Keep it simple, after all, it's a wedding, not Royal Ascot or the Kentucky Derby. You don't want to distract everyone's attention from the bride or block anyone's view of the proceedings.
3. Don't go too casual! Even if the wedding is a more low-key event or being held in a barn, there is still an expectation of a certain level of dress. Casual weddings do not mean that jeans and a t-shirt are acceptable! While you won't want to throw on an evening gown you'll still need to make sure what you wear is not your everyday wear.
If in doubt, ask! It's much better to check the expectations (if any) with the bride and groom rather than risk a faux-pas on the day.
Here's to keeping all eyes on the bride this wedding season!
P.S. If you need help finding the perfect wedding outfit or need help with your overall style then book a free consultation with one of our certified personal stylists.