Appropriate Dress Lengths for Wedding Guests

Appropriate Dress Lengths for Wedding Guests

How to Pick the Right Dress Style

Picture this: you totally forgot that your friend’s wedding is this weekend and you have no clue what to wear. You are not close enough to the bride to ask her what you should be wearing but you also don’t want to be under dressed. What do you do?

In this article I will be discussing how you can use the time of day, venue location, and invitation design to help you dress for the occasion.

Mini dress

Mini dresses can be fun and show off your curves. Though they are becoming more popular, they are still typically not appropriate for weddings unless the bride specifically says to it is okay. If not, it can be seen as disrespectful and tacky.

Appropriate dress length for weddings

Above the knee and knee length dresses

Above the knee dresses can be perfect for informal occasions and can be an especially good idea for an outdoor wedding in the spring/summer seasons. If the wedding is a little more formal or in the fall or winter season, you may want to go with a knee length option. These dress lengths work better for day-time weddings, but can be an option for an evening wedding depending on the fabric.

Cocktail dress

A cocktail dress is a great option if you are unsure of how formal an event is. They can be any length between above the knee and a midi, but in most cases, the longer the cocktail dress, the more elegant it appears. Cocktail dresses are perfect for afternoon or evening weddings, but can also be worn earlier in the day if the wedding or event is more formal or if the venue is upscale.

Midi dress

Midi dresses are very similar to most cocktail dresses in length and structure, but are usually made of less formal fabric, such as cotton or polyester and are viewed as more elegant and charming than a knee length or above the knee dress without being as formal as a cocktail dress. This is usually the perfect dress for a garden party style wedding and the daytime version of a cocktail dress for earthy, vintage style weddings.

Maxi dress

Maxi dresses are easily the most versatile type of dress offered when it comes to season. They can also be perfect for indoor and outdoor locations and are worn mainly for morning, midday, and some afternoon weddings. If the event is relatively informal or semiĀ  formal, a maxi dress can be the perfect dress option.

Floor length dress

Floor length and evening gowns are typically reserved for very formal evening weddings, but could also work for afternoon weddings. Most wedding invitations for an event of this nature will inform you that black tie attire is expected.

When in doubt, you can always phone a friend and ask them how formal they believe the event will be based on the venue, time of day, and any hints that the invitation may have given.

If you aren’t sure what color your dress should be, check out my post on Popular Color Palettes of 2019!

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