WHAT IS WEDDING ATTIRE DRESS CODE? WHAT IS WEDDING ATTIRE DRESS CODE?

Posted by Galleria Brands

As you continue to climb through your adulthood, you’re finding that your closest friends and family members are beginning to get married and invite you to their wedding celebrations. With each invitation received via snail mail comes a different dress code that you’re asked to follow when the big day rolls around. But what exactly do all of these different dress codes mean? You could ask the bride and groom or a close member of the bridal party who is aware of what is being planned, or you could learn about the seven most common wedding dress code requests and what wardrobe pieces best fit the description of “cocktail” or “island casual”.

The least common requested dress code today, white tie is considered to be the most sophisticated, classy, fancy attire for a wedding. Dating back to the late 1820s where color on a male’s formal apparel was unthinkable, men traditionally wore black and white pieces as their most formal clothing. Unless the bride and groom are Hollywood stars, multi-millionaires, or straight royalty, it is unlikely that you’d receive an invitation stressing this specific dress code. But, in the off-chance that you do, male guests should prepare to wear a coat with a tail, a white wing-collared shirt, a white vest and white bow tie. You should expect your shoes to really shine, and may even consider a silk top hat on your head.

Not quite as fancy as white tie, black tie, also known as the “dinner jacket,” made its debut around 1928 when Edward VIII, Prince of Wales, decided to wear a short evening jacket, rather than his coat with tail, to a dinner. From then on, the high-class, formal white tie dress code began to slowly fade. If an invitation stresses black tie, male guests should expect to wear a tuxedo adorned with a black bow tie. Either a cummerbund or tuxedo-and-vest combination are acceptable for this attire.

Black tie optional, commonly referred to as “formal,” came into use when it was realized that most people did not own tuxedos and evening gowns. Still meant to be a formal event, ‘black tie optional’ allows guests to dress more comfortably and gives greater leeway on the outfit pieces of choice. If men feel most comfortable in a full tuxedo, they’re free to go for it. However, if a male prefers to wear a dark suit and tie, people wouldn’t question why he wasn’t following the dress code. However, men should still shy away from light colored pieces or clothing that is covered in a print.

Known for being the party dress, cocktail attire was first introduced for ladies in the early 1900s when women indulging in some pre-dinner drinks became acceptable. And since cocktails were considered drinks before dinner, women began to sport shorter dresses to wear during this part of the evening. Cocktail dresses continued to be worn and have since become the most popular party attire in fashion history. For men, this is where they can leave the tuxedos behind and comfortably sport a simple suit and tie. Rather than having to stick to black and dark colors, though, men should feel free to wear brighter colors and patterns, jackets or no jackets, a formal vest, bowtie or tie. There is a lot of flexibility in this dress code, which is great for those feeling a bit more daring.

Less straightforward than all of the rest, daytime semi-formal is considered to be the most confusing dress code for both men and women. Are you supposed to wear a suit and tie, or is something way more casual acceptable? The name in itself is an oxymoron, and most of the time, people are underdressed when they are asked to follow the semi-formal code. While this dress code lies somewhere between black tie and informal, men should expect to wear a jacket, regardless of what else they pair with it. This look is minimal and simple, so a light plain colored shirt should be paired with your jacket. However, your pants and jacket do not necessarily have to match. If you choose to wear a tie, choose a slim one to keep things less formal. Texture, color, and patterns are okay here, too! Leave your tuxedo at home to avoid being overdressed, but be sure to not show up in jeans, either.

Like daytime semi-formal, dressy casual is another dress code that often leaves people confused. How casual is too casual? Note immediately that ‘wedding casual’ and ‘casual-casual’ are two drastically different things. This dress code does not mean the bride and groom want you to show up in jeans and a t-shirt to their wedding celebration, but they also don’t expect you to go buy a full suit, either. Unless specifically instructed, men should avoid jeans, workout clothes, and sneakers. A collared button-down or polo shirt would be a more acceptable choice for the dressy casual code. A jacket isn’t required, but it’s always a nice touch when attending a wedding. And while slacks are always a good pant option, a khaki or chino bottom would also pair well for this attire.

If you’re heading to a tropical place for a wedding, the island dress code should automatically have you envisioning floral patterns, lightweight clothes, and a comfortable pair of loafers. If you wish to still wear a suit, keep it lightweight or choose to just wear a sport coat over a light top. Again, chino or khaki bottoms are common for this dress code, and boat shoes and loafers are popular footwear choices. Don’t stress about a neck tie, either. You won’t be the only one who isn’t sporting one.

As you continue to climb through your adulthood, you’re finding that your closest friends and family members are beginning to get married and invite you to their wedding celebrations. With each invitation received via snail mail comes a different dress code that you’re asked to follow when the big day rolls around. But what exactly do all of these different dress codes mean? You could ask the bride and groom or a close member of the bridal party who is aware of what is being planned, or you could learn about the seven most common wedding dress code requests and what wardrobe pieces best fit the description of “cocktail” or “island casual”.

The least common requested dress code today, white tie is considered to be the most sophisticated, classy, fancy attire for a wedding. Dating back to the late 1820s where color on a male’s formal apparel was unthinkable, men traditionally wore black and white pieces as their most formal clothing. Unless the bride and groom are Hollywood stars, multi-millionaires, or straight royalty, it is unlikely that you’d receive an invitation stressing this specific dress code. But, in the off-chance that you do, male guests should prepare to wear a coat with a tail, a white wing-collared shirt, a white vest and white bow tie. You should expect your shoes to really shine, and may even consider a silk top hat on your head.

Not quite as fancy as white tie, black tie, also known as the “dinner jacket,” made its debut around 1928 when Edward VIII, Prince of Wales, decided to wear a short evening jacket, rather than his coat with tail, to a dinner. From then on, the high-class, formal white tie dress code began to slowly fade. If an invitation stresses black tie, male guests should expect to wear a tuxedo adorned with a black bow tie. Either a cummerbund or tuxedo-and-vest combination are acceptable for this attire.

Black tie optional, commonly referred to as “formal,” came into use when it was realized that most people did not own tuxedos and evening gowns. Still meant to be a formal event, ‘black tie optional’ allows guests to dress more comfortably and gives greater leeway on the outfit pieces of choice. If men feel most comfortable in a full tuxedo, they’re free to go for it. However, if a male prefers to wear a dark suit and tie, people wouldn’t question why he wasn’t following the dress code. However, men should still shy away from light colored pieces or clothing that is covered in a print.

Known for being the party dress, cocktail attire was first introduced for ladies in the early 1900s when women indulging in some pre-dinner drinks became acceptable. And since cocktails were considered drinks before dinner, women began to sport shorter dresses to wear during this part of the evening. Cocktail dresses continued to be worn and have since become the most popular party attire in fashion history. For men, this is where they can leave the tuxedos behind and comfortably sport a simple suit and tie. Rather than having to stick to black and dark colors, though, men should feel free to wear brighter colors and patterns, jackets or no jackets, a formal vest, bowtie or tie. There is a lot of flexibility in this dress code, which is great for those feeling a bit more daring.

Less straightforward than all of the rest, daytime semi-formal is considered to be the most confusing dress code for both men and women. Are you supposed to wear a suit and tie, or is something way more casual acceptable? The name in itself is an oxymoron, and most of the time, people are underdressed when they are asked to follow the semi-formal code. While this dress code lies somewhere between black tie and informal, men should expect to wear a jacket, regardless of what else they pair with it. This look is minimal and simple, so a light plain colored shirt should be paired with your jacket. However, your pants and jacket do not necessarily have to match. If you choose to wear a tie, choose a slim one to keep things less formal. Texture, color, and patterns are okay here, too! Leave your tuxedo at home to avoid being overdressed, but be sure to not show up in jeans, either.

Like daytime semi-formal, dressy casual is another dress code that often leaves people confused. How casual is too casual? Note immediately that ‘wedding casual’ and ‘casual-casual’ are two drastically different things. This dress code does not mean the bride and groom want you to show up in jeans and a t-shirt to their wedding celebration, but they also don’t expect you to go buy a full suit, either. Unless specifically instructed, men should avoid jeans, workout clothes, and sneakers. A collared button-down or polo shirt would be a more acceptable choice for the dressy casual code. A jacket isn’t required, but it’s always a nice touch when attending a wedding. And while slacks are always a good pant option, a khaki or chino bottom would also pair well for this attire.

If you’re heading to a tropical place for a wedding, the island dress code should automatically have you envisioning floral patterns, lightweight clothes, and a comfortable pair of loafers. If you wish to still wear a suit, keep it lightweight or choose to just wear a sport coat over a light top. Again, chino or khaki bottoms are common for this dress code, and boat shoes and loafers are popular footwear choices. Don’t stress about a neck tie, either. You won’t be the only one who isn’t sporting one.