The Dos and Don’ts of Wedding Guest Attire



Attending a wedding is a gift and a little bit of a labor of love too! Love is in the air and you have the opportunity to witness it. But figuring out the perfect outfit can lead to some stress. Have no fear! Here are some dos and don’ts of wedding guest attire to help guide you to that picture-perfect look.

Do plan for the weather and venue. Have additional items ready that match your outfit. If weather is a concern, come prepared. For a cold-weather wedding consider a coat, shawl, pashmina, or tights to keep you warm. For a beach wedding or a warm location, a hat, hand fan, and sandals may be appropriate. All of this preparation will ensure that you can comfortably enjoy the event.

Don’t wear white or the wedding party color palette (if you know it). Not wearing white as a guest is a timeless rule that still stands. Unless the soon-to-be-weds tell you otherwise, this is one I suggest sticking to. Out of respect for the couple and the people that they chose to stand with them at their ceremony, I recommend that you don’t wear colors too similar to that of the wedding party, if that information is know.

Do read your invitation. The wedding invitation should give you a clue about what to wear. Often times, the couple will directly state the attire that is expected of their guests. For example, black tie, black tie optional, formal, semi-formal, or casual. Always follow the assigned dress code and if you’re not sure what it means, find inspiration. Pinterest or fashion magazines are full of wonderful ideas. These days, couples are getting creative with their attire suggestions so do your best to interpret the dress code respectfully.

Don’t wait until the last minute. Make sure to plan your look well in advance of the event date. Have your alterations scheduled and dry cleaning done weeks ahead of time. This means that your shoes should already be picked out if the length of your garments depends on them. You don’t want to make it to the big day and have to change outfits!

Do coordinate with your plus one. Complementary colors and small accents are ways to avoid clashing or blending in too much with your fellow guest. Color coordination is a wonderful way to prepare for dazzling photos together. You may even walk away with a framed keepsake from the night.

Don’t be afraid to ask what other guests are wearing. If you know other guests and feel comfortable reaching out, it’s always a good idea to have a sense of what others will wear. Knowing that you will match the level of attire as someone else will ease your concerns, bring you inspiration, and help you plan your own outfit.

Do make your necessary appointments. As a wedding guest, you have to not only prepare an outfit, but also an entire look. This may include manicure and pedicure, spray tan, blow out, and makeup. Schedule all necessary appointments well in advance, so you aren’t scrambling last minute.

Don’t forget your own style. Above all else, let your personality show. It’s not every day that you have the opportunity to dress up, so make it count. You’ll feel the absolute best and most comfortable in a look that is you.

By following these dos and don’t of wedding guest attire, you’ll set yourself up to avoid any unnecessary stress, enjoy the big day, and let your style shine. And the couple will thank you for keeping within their theme for their photos too!



Image by Norman & Blake