What On Earth Should I Wear to This Wedding?

As we discussed last month, we are deep into wedding season and with the arrival of summer the frequency of weddings is only going to compound.  These days, a wedding can have any theme, occur anywhere, and each wedding can look completely different than any other.  You may attend one wedding that is takes place in the traditional church setting and the next wedding you go to takes place at the groom’s cousin’s friend’s distillery and farm.  

Each type of wedding requires a slightly different outfit and it can be difficult to know what to wear in each situation. While it can vary based on the dress code specified on the invite, there are definitely certain types of attire you can generally wear to each new-fangled or old-fashioned wedding type.  Here are my recommendations for a few common wedding types:

Traditional Indoor Wedding

This is your classic church wedding with bridesmaid dresses that actually match and all of the expected wedding traditions observed.  For this type of wedding whether it be at a church or synagogue or temple, it will probably be pretty formal.  You will want to lean towards black tie if that option is available to you. (If you are not sure what “black tie” is, check out my article from last month.)  If not, go for a “simple yet classy” dark suit and solid tie.  

Backyard Wedding

The wedding industry has become this super intense thing and I think the rise of incredibly extravagant weddings has recently been met by a new competitor – the backyard wedding is on the rise.  This more simple type of wedding can still be formal, but it is definitely a more casual and relaxed dress code than a traditional wedding.  A less formal dress code gives you a little more room to show our personality in what you wear.  Try adding a pop of color to one key piece in your ensemble.  I would go for a classic dress pant with a patterned blazer.

Beach Wedding

Similar to a backyard wedding, a beach wedding allows you to be constrained by fewer rules.  Practically, you will want wear something that is durable to ocean breezes and sandy beaches. I would opt for a white dress shirt and a pair of linen dress pants as a solid beach wedding outfit.

Outdoor Farm/Barn Wedding

This is your classic hipster, “non-traditional” wedding.  It probably also includes mason jars and cocktails made with the herbs from somebody’s grandma’s garden.  The attire options for this type of wedding are usually pretty broad.  You can opt for something a bit more formal such as a dress pant and blazer combination with a sharp-looking bow tie or you can even go so casual as a plaid dress shirt and dark dress denim pants with a dress shoes.  This one also depends a lot on what dress code is specified on the invite, so use that as your guide and then make it your own.  

Now, the wedding world is a crazy thing these days.  I have done my best to equip you with basic knowledge of how to dress for a few common types of weddings, but I know you may stumble upon the occasional Star Trek-themed wedding.  For that, I can offer you little advice.  However, if you have any questions about what you should wear to any wedding, let me know.  


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