While the bride or groom typically has the most decisions to make about their wedding day attire, guests feel the pressure too! When invited to attend a close friend or family member’s wedding, you will want to look your absolute best and not stick out like a sore thumb. Here are some tips on how to choose the perfect wedding guest attire.
One of the most important things to find out before selecting your outfit is the wedding’s overall style. Is it formal, semi-formal, or casual? Wedding invitations will often note the dress code, especially if it is a very formal event. Black tie is a more formal affair, where you might be expected to dress like you’re on a red carpet.
It’s also important to note the location and time of day. A daytime ceremony at a church and an evening wedding at an art gallery might both be considered semi-formal, but you probably won’t choose the same outfit for both.
Tradition and Customs
You should find out the traditions or customs of the wedding when planning your outfit. For example, some cultures find it disrespectful to wear black to a wedding, as it is typically the color for a funeral. In some cultures, the bride wears white and guests are expected to avoid it, while in others, she’ll be donned in red.
You should also see if guests are expected or invited to dress in the bride and groom’s cultural attire. For example, suppose you are attending an Indian wedding. In that case, you might want to pick up a sari from Nihal Fashions, or wear a modest outfit that covers your arms if you are attending a religious ceremony.
Picking the Right Colour
Aside from avoiding the colors traditionally worn by the bride and groom, you should also make sure not to choose the same or similar color outfit as the wedding party. If the groomsmen are wearing navy tuxes and the bridesmaids are blush, both those colors should be off your list. This is to avoid confusion and make sure you don’t pull focus from the bridal party.
Other than that, you can choose your outfit’s color based on seasonality. Spring weddings are the perfect chance to wear pastels, while winter weddings are better for deeper hues like maroon or forest green. Summer can be bright and bold with purples or pinks, and fall outfits can include burnt orange and mustard yellow.
How Much Skin Should You Show?
For women, one question to think about when picking your outfit is how revealing it should be. This is something that will vary based on the couple and the wedding. Some couples are more modest and traditional, and you should respect their beliefs and dress appropriately. Don’t wear anything too short and keep your arms and chest covered. Other weddings are laxer and you can get away with a sleeveless or strapless dress.
If you’re not sure, err on the side of caution and dress more conservatively. You can also bring a wrap or shawl to cover your shoulders with a sleeveless dress during the ceremony, and then lose it when it’s time to hit the dance floor.
Don’t Forget The Accessories!
Your outfit won’t be complete without wedding-appropriate accessories. Wear comfortable shoes if you’re planning on hitting the dance floor at the reception! You can opt for flats or sturdy heels, or bring a pair of flats in your bag to switch into when you’re ready to dance.
For the bag itself, stick with a small clutch or evening bag. Something large or with a massive strap will distract from your overall look, not to mention taking up extra space at your table.
For men, accessories are just as important! With your suit, you can add lapel pins or cufflinks to dress it up, or colorful socks and suspenders to make the outfit more playful.
Dress to Impress
While your presence at the wedding will always be most important to the happy couple, your appearance still matters. You need to dress in a way that shows respect to the couple, but always lets you feel comfortable and free to enjoy the night!