Wedding Attire Simplified

With summer on its way and wedding season in full swing, I was inspired by this article on The Knot to (hopefully) help people choose the correct outfits for Spring and Summer weddings.  Let’s face it, some of the attire requirements can get a little confusing!  Hopefully, this article will clarify some of that confusion and help you look your best!

If the invitation says…

“White Tie”White TIe

This is the most formal of all dress requirements.  Consider the Royal wedding of Prince William & Duchess Kate and the upcoming nuptials of Prince Harry & Meghan Markle on May 19th.

For Him:  A tuxedo and long black jacket with tails. A white bow tie is a must with black formal shoes and white gloves for dancing.

For Her:  A full length formal ball gown in a neutral color like black or dark brown. Dramatic jewelry, hair, and make-up are appropriate.

“Black Tie”Black Tie

This is almost as dressy as white tie and it usually means that the wedding is an evening affair.

For Him:  A tuxedo with black bow tie

For Her: A long evening gown or chic cocktail dress with plenty of embellishments

“Formal” or “Black Tie Optional”

Formal or Black Tie Optional

This is somewhat less formal than black tie, but still quite dressy for both him and her.

For Him:  A formal dark suit and tie are a good choice but a tuxedo is acceptable

For Her:  A long dress or formal cocktail length dress in a dark or neutral color

“Beach Formal”

Beach Formal

This suggests an elegant beach wedding so dress to impress while also considering the elements.

For Him:  A linen suit or light summer suit with linen shirt, tie optional

For Her:  A formal tea or knee-length summer dress with flats or wedges.  A long dress would also be appropriate, but be sure it is a lighter color and flowy and that you wear flats

“Dressy Casual”

Dressy Casual

Pay attention to the time of the event. This wedding dress code is somewhere between semi-formal and casual. Wear darker colors for evening and lighter for a daytime wedding.

For Him: A suit and tie. Color choice is dependent on the time of day

For Her: A cocktail dress or a dressy top and skirt


Casual Sundress

Casual means casual. However, I would not suggest wearing jeans and a tank top, but I would suggest feeling comfortable wearing something you would wear to a nice dinner out with family and friends.

For Him: Dress pants with a polo shirt

For Her: A summer sundress or skirt and top


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    Love these tips!!! That “dressy casual” dress is amazing!!!

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      Thank you, Ruth! I love that dress too! It’s appropriate for a lot of weddings! 🙂 xo

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    This was so helpful! For the longest time I didn’t know the difference between some of these.

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    Woow what a great blog! Just love it <3!

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    Wow it’s incredible all the different considerations you have to factor in when you need to go to a wedding. In fact I didn’t know many of these except dress up and dont wear white.

    • Avatar

      I’m glad you found the blog post useful! Some of the dress code can be confusing! 🙂 xo

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    This is such a good reference for what to wear for the upcoming wedding seasons! Love the selections too!

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    This has to be one of the most useful blogs on wedding attire I’ve read! Well done, thank you.

    • Avatar

      Wow, I appreciate the compliment and I’m glad to be of help!! 🙂 xo

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    This post is super helpful! I’ve never been to a wedding, but I know it’ll start happening soon as my friends and I grow up and get engaged, and I would hate to be over or underdressed!

    • Avatar

      Thank you, Indya! I’m so glad that you found it helpful 🙂 xo

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