Though the end of the summer is fast approaching, it’s still prime time for weddings. Indeed, many people don’t like the idea of getting married in 95° weather that causes their makeup to run and their groom to have visible sweat marks in photos. So the slightly cooler weather during the end of summer and early fall can actually be ideal and you may have several weddings to attend.
When you’re checking different registries and trying to get shower dates straight, it can be easy to get caught up in a wedding frenzy when you aren’t the one that’s actually getting married. Nobody wants to have the dishonor of being “that wedding guest,” whether that means being the one that caused a nuisance at the reception or the one who committed a serious fashion faux pas. If you follow these tips when your friends and loved ones say “I do” this season, you can just relax and enjoy the event.
Play it safe and avoid white
It’s 2014, and a lot of the conventions about what not to wear to weddings are fading away. Brides are opting for more color in their wedding gowns (or a different color altogether – think of Jessica Biel!), and people are wearing white to weddings . . . sometimes. The thing about weddings is that they can be as traditional or untraditional as the bride, groom, and their families want them to be. So base any clothing decisions you make on your knowledge of the family. If you know them very well and are absolutely sure they won’t mind, a cocktail dress with some white in it may not be a bad idea; if they are traditional or you are unsure, play it safe and avoid white.
Read the invitation for clues
Is there anything worse to showing up to a formal wedding in a semi-formal dress? There is, and it’s neglecting to read the fine print on a wedding invite and showing up in whatever you have lying around. Carefully read every invitation you get and look for keywords that indicate the appropriate attire for the wedding. When in doubt, contact the bride, groom, or family and ask. A black tie wedding will call for your most formal dresses, and will allow you to rock your favorite evening gown. A semi-formal wedding will allow you to wear that somewhat fancy cocktail dress that you just bought for a classy event.
Avoid black (at an afternoon wedding)
You may have a perfect little black dress you’ve been waiting to wear but, if you’re going to a morning or afternoon wedding, you should avoid it. Black dresses really look most appropriate in the dim hues of evening or candlelight, and they are infinitely more appropriate to the setting. In the sun, go for something light, bright, and cheery.
As for the old faux pas about not wearing black to a wedding at all (even in the evening), most people really don’t see it as inappropriate anymore. Just do yourself a favor and make sure it doesn’t look at all funerary – after all, you’re here to celebrate! Make your accessories bright and colorful: for instance, use a standout jeweled or feathered hair pin, a sequined purple clutch or a glittering blue bracelet.
Stay out of the photographer’s way
This one isn’t so much about how to dress as how to show it off – or not. We understand that you put a lot of thought into your wedding outfit, but unless you’re part of the family or part of the wedding party, try to avoid getting into their pictures unless asked. Today, photo bombing can seem like a funny joke but, in a few years, the happily married couple will just wonder why you tried your hardest to get in every picture they have. Also, if you happen to be the date of someone in the wedding party, don’t assume that you’re automatically welcome to be in any picture they’re in.