Wedding dress codes can be hard to... decode. Have you ever received a wedding invitation that left you completely clueless about the wedding guest dress code? Between "black-tie optional" and "semi-formal," the language can be tricky to decipher.
As I get deeper into wedding planning, I'm noticing all the little nuocenses with wedding guest dress codes and I wanted to share with you what I know!
Not only am I going to help you decode what you should wear to the next wedding you have, but I'm linking my favorite options in each category. You might have something in your closet that works great, but if you're looking for something new and fun, I've got you covered with my linked photos below.
You can use this list below as a table of contents to skip right to the dress code you need next:
Wowww you're about to go to a noice event. White-tie is just about as fancy as you can get when it comes to wedding attire. Not too many weddings these days are white-but if you find yourself going to one, think long ball gowns and ready to a royal! Check out some of my favorite options below:
This is the next most formal wedding dress code, so you should typically wear a formal floor-length gown. If the wedding seems a bit less formal, an elevated cocktail dress or a badass pantsuit could work!
Formal or Black-Tie Optional
The choices are the same as with black-tie: a floor-length gown, a fancy cocktail dress, or a dressy pantsuit. As far as women are concerned, there's not much of a difference between black-tie attire and black-tie optional attire, so think about the fabric, texture, and patterns when it comes to being a step up or down here.
This is one of the most popular dress codes (especially for spring/summer weddings). It's a balance between elegant and comfortable, and typically is more formal than a day wedding but more casual than a night celebration. Instead of a floor-length dress, go for a tea-length, knee-length, or midi dress.
Semi-Formal or Dressy Casual
Part of dressing for a semi-formal or dressy casual wedding is taking the time of the wedding into account. Wear darker, more formal colors for an evening wedding; opt for light colors and fabrics for a daytime event. Try a below-the-knee dress or a dressy skirt and top.
This dress code is relatively new and will leave many guests questioning... what's festive?! Basically, guests are given the go-ahead to have fun and play with their look (and y'all know I love that!) This could also be theme-specific based on the style of the wedding! Roaring 20s, bright colors from a color scheme card, or NYE weddings typically fall in this category. Bride's will typically give more details if they want you to dress for a theme, but a safe bet is to opt for cocktail-party attire featuring bolder colors and playful accessories.
This indicates the wedding will likely be held outdoors or on the beach, meaning the event will be much more laid-back, especially when it comes to attire. With that said, jeans, shorts, and tank tops are probably not appropriate unless they're specifically noted as acceptable. A summer sundress is appropriate (just make sure the fabric isn't overly formal).
Tropical or Destination
Tropical weddings are usually humid and hot affairs, and you have to dress accordingly. Remember, always err on the dressier side of caution. This is a fun opportunity to play with bold, tropical prints like the ones below! As with a casual wedding, look for cotton sundresses and nice sandals or wedges.
Did you find some fun pieces to wear to the next wedding you've got? I sure hope so, and I hope this was helpful for you to feel confident and rock that look as you celebrate the newlyweds at the big celebration.
Have a blast and keep a lookout for more wedding fun from this engaged gal!