Translating the dress code for Wedding season

If you ever receive a wedding invitation with a specified dress code, then know that it is required of you to make it right and meet your hosts’ expectations. Don’t panic, you don’t need to sign up for a crash course of royal etiquette before you start picking your outfit. Dress codes can be fun and it all comes down to a few simple rules that can serve you as guidelines, so that you can be appropriately dressed and stylish at the same time.


Let’s start at the bottom. Casual means informal dressing in life, but mind that if it’s a wedding you’re attending, it doesn’t mean that you can just throw on a pair of jeans and a shirt, and be good to go. That being said, jeans, shorts and sneakers are not a good idea. Your outfit should be a nice dress, a jumpsuit is a good idea also, or you can wear a two-piece outfit (wide leg pants and a crop top), which you can accompany with a statement necklace, sunglasses and a clutch.



Usually popular around holidays. It would be most suitable to wear cocktail party dresses, including short dresses that are party ready – a little black dress is always a good option – but with a holiday twist. For example, you can go for sequin details around winter holidays.



Outdoorsy, garden wedding is a perfect opportunity for floral (how convenient) dresses or cocktail dresses that you can pair with a nice hat. You can even opt for a maxi boho dress with a seasonal floral pattern. Add a modern touch to this ensemble with a circle clutch bag or an artsy brooch.


Semiformal and Formal

This is a middle way between casual and highly formal, and it’s the most frequent dress code at weddings. Semiformal events are usually happening in day time, so opt for a light colour cocktail dress, whereas formal events are night time events. A good choice is tea-length or full length formal dresses paired with strappy sandals and daring accessories – go with an interesting pair of earrings.


Black Tie and White Tie

White tie is at the top of the list as the most formal dress code. For gents, it includes a tuxedo with tails and a white tie. Black tie is also very formal, but a tuxedo can be replaced with a black suit. In this case, a tie should be black; and gentlemen, you better wear it as there are not many exceptions to the dress code rules. For ladies, however, this is a chance to channel their inner Hollywood star going to the Oscars reception. The dress has to be floor length, non-flashy and elegant and even if you opt for a ball gown, you won’t be overdressed. Who wouldn’t want to go to a wedding that fancy? Don’t forget to accessorize with subtle, sophisticated jewellery.


Now, if you find yourself at the other end of the invitation, that is, if you’re planning a wedding and you’re not sure about the dress code or whether you should have one, go through these tips a few more times and decide on one. Your guests will be grateful to know what exactly is expected from them and your wedding theme will be more coherent. Remember, when you’re printing the invitations, if the ceremony and reception are happening at the same location, the dress code should be stated at the bottom right corner. If they are happening at two separate locations, the dress code is printed on the reception card. You’re welcome!

Roxana is a travel enthusiast and lifestyle consultant from Sydney and she loves to write about her adventures. She is all about the healthy lifestyle, loves to run with her husband and dogs and has fun cooking exotic meals for her family. Being a typical Aussie, she often hits the waves and loves beaches and sunshine! You can find out more about her writing following her on twitter and facebook. She is also one of the editors at Highstylife Magazine.

Posted in Guests, Planning by wedded wonderland

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