Wedding season is here! So if you’re attending one of these special occasions – or having one of your own – it’s important to understand dress codes. Yes, we all know the difference between black tie and cocktail attire, but what about white tie? And how casual is “casual” attire? From decoding dress codes to wedding no-nos, we’re here to help you decide what to wear to a wedding!
And be sure to check out the infographic at the end of this blog post for a simple guide on wedding attire.
White tie is the most formal dress code of them all. Think: What would someone wear to a ball at the White House? Floor length evening gowns are a must for a white tie affair. This dress code is a bit less common, as most people just stick to black tie if they’re having a formal event, but now you know what to wear if you ever see this on the invitation!
Black is the more common of the two fancy attires. You will often see this attire for evening events. Wearing a floor length gown is your best bet, but you could also get away with wearing a fancy cocktail dress.
Black Tie Optional
Just a step below black tie, this attire gives guests a bit more flexibility. Want to wear that new fancy gown you have in your closet? Go for it! But a nice cocktail dress or dressy separates is definitely appropriate for black tie optional attire.
Cocktail attire is semi-formal attire, so find a nice balance between fancy and casual. For this attire you can’t go wrong in a cocktail dress – hence the name!
Casual attire is typically the dress code for outdoor or beach weddings, where a long fancy gown would be difficult to manage! A sundress or a nice skirt paired with a blouse are both perfect options.
What Not to Wear
So far we’ve only discussed what to wear to a wedding – depending on the dress code. But there are some outfits you should never wear to a wedding – and we mean never!
- White: White is reserved for the bride, so don’t try to steal her thunder by showing up in the same color!
- Animal Print: While animal print can certainly be fun for certain occasions, it’s too loud to wear to a wedding. Remember: the attention should be on the bride – it’s her big day! So don’t distract with “in-your-face” patterns.
- Glitter: The same goes for glitter. An all-glitter dress can be distracting. But glitter in small doses is definitely acceptable!
- Club Attire: Save those tight, short dresses for the club. There is no place for them at a wedding!
- Bridesmaid Colors: This one can be tricky if you are not close with the bride. And if that is the case, don’t worry about it. But if you do happen to know the color scheme of the wedding party, try to steer clear. That will avoid any confusion on who is a bridesmaid and who is not.
Happy (Wedding Outfit) Planning!