A Guide to Choosing What to Wear in a Wedding

A wedding is a special day, not only to the couple who is getting married but also to everyone who will attend the said occasion. It’s a time to dress up and most people love dressing up. They will want to look their best and it is not every day that they can do so. The wedding guests will really appreciate it if they were informed ahead of time of such event so they will have time to find the best dress to wear, which is why sending out invitations on the proper time is important.

However, not everybody really looks forward into dressing up for an event like a wedding. Most probably, it is because they do not know what to wear or how to dress up for, say, a black-tie wedding, or a creative formal one. So, let this article help you find that perfect wedding guest attire.

The invitation tells it all

If you do not what to wear to a wedding, take your cue in the information written in the wedding invitation itself. What you will wear actually depends on the time of the wedding ceremonies and the dress code, as stated in the wedding invitation.

bride and groom

A wedding which will be held during daytime calls for more casual attire and lighter fabrics, as well as colors. On the other hand, dressier attire is a perfect match for a wedding held in the evening.

The second thing you will need to find out is whether or not the wedding invitation states if there is a dress code. However, if the wedding invitation does not include a dress code, your best bet depends on the time of the wedding ceremonies.

General rules to observe

bride and groom

As a basic guide, a wedding calls for a woman to wear a dress while a man wears a suit. The dress should not be white while the suit should not be black unless the dress code specifies such. Women are not supposed to wear white, off-white, or ivory, in general. These are the usual color of a wedding gown and female guests would not want to upstage the bride on her special day.

Out of respect for the occasion, ladies should opt-out of low-cut, revealing, or sexy outfits.

Ladies, please…

For a daytime wedding, ladies should avoid wearing black or sequined outfits. Black suits occasions held at night while sequined clothing will make you look overdressed. Weddings held at this time of the day favors lighter tones.

Informal daytime weddings allow female guests to wear a sundress, skirt, a top and a pair of pants (but never jeans). The occasion does not require women to wear high-heeled shoes.

A semi-formal wedding held in the daytime, on the other hand, will have female guests wearing cocktail dress and heels or dressy separates.

If the wedding is in the evening, this is a cue that guests should wear the more formal outfit on darker colors and in silk or satin fabrics. If the wedding is informal, a woman may wear a maxi-dress and a flat shoe. Wearing a little black dress, or LBD, with heels is also a good choice for an informal evening wedding. It is also a good choice for a semi-formal evening wedding.

evening wedding

For a ‘black-tie’ wedding, women may wear a formal dress or a dressier cocktail dress. However, if the dress code says ‘black-tie optional’, women have the option to wear a cocktail dress and heels or a formal dress. Some may opt for a jumpsuit, and that is also a good choice.

If it is a ‘white-tie’ wedding, women will have to wear a long, floor-length gown, together with their best jewelry.

In terms of accessories, one can wear necklaces, pendants, and rings to a more formal event. The quantity must be kept in moderation.

High-heeled shoes or sandals will never go wrong as well as a small clutch or cross body bag.

Men, listen.

As a general rule, men will look dashing in a suit. But they have other options, as well, depending on the time the wedding ceremonies will be held.

Men may wear slacks or chinos and a tucked-in shirt for an informal, daytime wedding. Pair it with oxfords or loafers but not with sneakers. Gentlemen may wear the same on an informal, evening wedding, with the addition of a jacket.

groom in tuxedo

A suit and a dress shoe is a good choice for men attending a semi-formal evening wedding. Wearing a tie is optional, but will look smart on a guy, if the wedding ceremonies will start after 6:00 PM.

If it is a black-tie party, a male wedding guest may wear a tuxedo or a black suit with a black tie. But if it is a black-tie optional, he has a choice between wearing a tuxedo or a dark suit and tie, with dress shoes.

A more formal white tie party will require a male guest to wear a tuxedo with a white bow tie and vest, with a jacket that may have a long tail at the back. Dress shoes should be made of patent leather.