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What Dress Code is right for your wedding?

A lot of thought goes into what you, your fiancé and the bridal party wear on your wedding day. But the attire of the rest of your guests can do a lot to set the vibe of your dream day, too. Before you choose your wedding-guest dress code, consider what these common dress codes entail so you can plan appropriately for your venue, your vision and even the weather!

Black Tie Do you daydream of a glamorous wedding? If you and your bridal party will be dressed to the nines, asking your guests to do the same will continue that formal vibe throughout your entire wedding day. A Black Tie wedding typically includes tuxedoes for men and floor-length gowns for women. It does require giving your guests time to plan their outfits, so stating “Black Tie” on your invites is a must.

Formal/Black Tie Optional Want to keep things fancy, but give your guests a bit more flexibility? This dress code tells your guests that they should wear and look their best, but don’t necessarily need to rent a tux or buy a brand new gown. A dark suit will fly here for men, and a long gown or formal cocktail dress are both options for the ladies. This should also be included on your invitation, so guests know what to expect and can run an outfit by you in advance if they have questions.

Semiformal Perhaps the most common wedding dress code, Semiformal attire offers a range of options for your guests. The season and time of day will both play a role in helping your guests decide the styles and colors of their ensembles. Suits in various colors work well for the guys, and dresses or dressy skirts will fit the bill for women. If you do not include a dress code on your invitations, this is likely the style that most guests will assume on your wedding day.

Casual This style attire at a wedding typically suggests something about the venue, like that the ceremony will be held on the beach or that there will be a backyard reception. Despite the informal nature of this style, it still suggests something nicer than jeans and sneakers. If you are writing “casual attire” on your invitations, be prepared to answer some questions from guests who might be unsure what is appropriate. For guys, khakis or dress pants and a button down is a good suggestion, and sundresses or flowing skirts offer a good inspiration for ladies.

Picture your wedding day. Do you see coattails and jewels, or boat shoes and sundresses? Using these wedding dress codes will help your guests to see exactly what you envision, and to fit in picture-perfectly on the big day.

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