Gowns and Guests

The Rules for Wedding Attire and How to Break Them

The traditional wedding attire, a white dress for the bride with complementary dresses for the bridesmaids, a tuxedo or morning suit for the groom, and the groomsman, is still standard for most weddings. To accompany the formalwear of the bridal party, guests are usually expected to dress accordingly.

But, as more and more people opt for themed weddings, or weddings at different times of the day, we are seeing brides and grooms asking guests to wear some different creative outfits.

Just a recap of the terms for levels of formal wear. You can save your guests a lot of worry by making the expected attire very clear on the invitation:

  • Black Tie means a formal or evening gown for women, and a tuxedo for men
  • Formal means an evening gown for women, and a black suit for men with tie
  • Semi-formal can include a shorter dress for women, and a colored suit for men, still with a tie
  • Casual in a wedding generally means something close to business casual. Still a dress for women, although it can be short, and nice trousers and a shirt for men

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