How To Decipher What To Wear To A Wedding

How To Decipher What To Wear To A Wedding

What could be more fun than looking forward to attending a wedding?  It has all the components of a great time; food, dancing, socializing, and of course romance!  There’s not many dry eyes when it comes to seeing two people celebrating their love with beautiful vows and a commitment to become “one”.  But wait!  The invitation says “Black Tie Optional” or “Beach Formal”, or perhaps it doesn’t even give you an idea of dress but just the type of venue such as, “Ceremony followed by Brunch”, or maybe it is a wedding being held outdoors under a tent!?  First question every woman asks is “WHAT DO I WEAR?”

Keep in mind that daytime weddings are usually less formal so a brunch will probably not be black tie!  A pretty dress, shoes, and minimal jewelry would work for a brunch reception.  If it’s under a tent, is it evening?  If so, it’s most likely more formal. For Black Tie Optional, some brides prefer guests to be mostly in long gowns and for others a short cocktail dress is perfectly suitable. Read on for more advice but it’s always a good idea to speak with the Mother of the Bride or Mother of the Groom so you show up looking perfect for the venue!


White Tie 

White tie is the most formal of all and requires the dressiest and most glamorous look.

LADIES:  This requires a formal full length ball gown, glamorous makeup and hair along with dramatic jewels.


Wear it with:

Crystal Evening Clutch with Tassel $130.

MEN:  He is required to wear a tux with tail, a white pique vest and bow tie, formal shoes and even white gloves are appropriate for dancing.

Black Tie

Black tie affairs are always evening affairs and require proper attire.

MEN:  This means a tuxedo, cummerbund and black patent leather shoes.

LADIES:  A cocktail dress or long gown, beautiful hair, makeup and accessories are always a must.. 

Wear with:

Pelle Moda Alia Kitten Heel Sandal – available in black, pewter or silver (shown here in silver). Available in sizes 6 to 11. $165.

Formal or Black Tie Optional 

This is great for the guy who happens to own a tuxedo of his own, but also takes the pressure off of renting a tux if your man doesn’t.  If no tuxedo, then a dark formal suit is fitting for the occasion.  It also gives women some choices as well.  She can wear a long evening gown, a formal cocktail length dress or a dressy suit.  

LADIES:  If your guy is going to wear a tux then go all out with a formal long gown.  If not choose a formal cocktail dress like the one below.  

Shorter Length Cocktail Dress with Cold Shoulder. Available in Black, Fuchsia, or Royal, Sizes 2 to 22. Buy it here.

Sabororma Long Cold Shoulder Gown. Perfect for pairing with your guy’s tuxedo! Add the accessories and jewels and you’re ready to shine! Available in Black, Blush, Fuchsia, Green, Navy, Royal or Red. Available in sizes 4 to 14. $685. Buy it here.

Beach Formal 

LADIES:  Think light and flowing with flat sandals 

Available in 25 beautiful colors, this ruffle gown is light and breezy. Pair with sandals and pretty jewels. $600, available in sizes 2 to 22. Buy it here.

MEN:  Khaki pants, white button down and tie.

We hope this little guide has helped to point you in the right direction.  If you live near our store, please visit us and allow us to show you the kind of service and advice that has made us a winner year after year for Best of The Gold Coast!  We look forward to seeing you soon!

xo  The Helen Ainson Style Team

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