8 Dos And Don'ts Of Wedding Guest Attire

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8 Dos And Don'ts Of Wedding Guest Attire
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Wondering what to wear to all those summer weddings? Read this quick-and-easy guide.

So, you finally got invited to a wedding. Congratulations! But when it comes to what to wear to a wedding, you may not even know where to start. I mean, you know not to wear white to match the bride, right?

In order to adhere to the rules of the perfect wedding guest attire, there are a few things you should know. After all, you want to have a great time without pissing anyone off, right? You can be as excited as you want... as long as you follow some tips.


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1. DO: Decode the invitation.

Before you can decide what to wear, you have to know what all the invitation lingo means. "Casual" daytime wedding? Sundress or skirt. "Semiformal?" Cocktail dress. "Formal?" A floor-length or dark-shade cocktail dress. "Black tie?" An evening gown or an ultra-luxe cocktail dress. "White tie?" All out: Gowns only, accessorized to the nines.

2. DON'T: Wear brand new shoes.

It's tempting to buy heels specifically for a special occasion like a wedding, but never wear your shiny new kicks without breaking them in first. At a wedding, there's absolutely no escape from your pretty-yet-painful pumps. It would be a real bummer to miss all the dancing because you can't walk!

3. DO: Wear prints or rich brights.

Muted prints, like summery watercolor or soft floral, are okay for a wedding, as are rich brights like magenta or cerulean. Both are acceptable and on-trend. But...

4. DON'T: Ever wear white or red.

You never want to take attention away from the bride. White is her color, as is ivory, eggshell, cream and absolutely any other shade that might remotely resemble white. Just say no, friends.

Also, avoid red — you are not to halt people in their tracks like a glowing stop light. There are many other colors you can wear that are minimal but gorgeous.

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5. DO: Layer or utilize separates.

An A-line skirt with a pretty lace tank or a sheer blouse is a great option, and one you can probably assemble from pieces you already own (huge bonus!). If you're wearing a daytime sundress, choose a pastel cardigan, or you're rocking an evening cocktail dress, choose a feminine shawl.

6. DON'T: Wear anything revealing or flashy.

Sequins? No. Lots of cleavage? Also no. If you look in the mirror and think, Hmm... is this really okay to wear? The answer is no.

7. DO: Choose bold accessories.

Since a muted palette is necessary to be a respectable wedding guest, add color and intrigue with a few gorgeous accessories. Choose a bright turquoise necklace to compliment a strapless dress or work some bold bangles into your skirt-and-shirt look.

8. DON'T: Forget the details.

Pamper yourself pre-wedding! Paint fingernails and toenails a complementary shade. Pick up a tanning lotion for a subtle glow and some skin hydration. Get those locks a healthy trim... the little details go a long way to looking great.

You never know who you'll see at a wedding (exes, frenemies) or who you'll meet (umm, the hot groomsmen, maybe?), so you may as well look your best!


RELATED: 9 Ways To NOT Be The WORST, Most Embarrassing Person At A Wedding


Jenna Birch is a freelance writer, a romantic and a realist. She's a columnist for Smarter.com, and has also written for Girls' Life magazine, MSN Glo, The Grindstone, AND Magazine, Front Row View, TruthinAging.com and Wetpaint.com.

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