Decoding Dress Codes

For the Guest

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May 1, 2017

Kelly Strong Events: Decoding Dress Codes

image via A Bryan Photo

As we approach the summer months, it’s time to start planning your attire for each wedding you’ll attend as a guest. If you’re wondering what is most appropriate to wear for the various dress codes, here’s a little guide (for the ladies) listed from most formal to least formal…

  • Black Tie: Evening gown or formal cocktail dress. If you’re going with a cocktail dress, make sure it’s on the dressier side, usually dark colors are your safest bet.
  • Black Tie Optional or Formal: Long dress or formal cocktail dress. You’ll see a range of dress lengths at these weddings but I usually opt for a long dress.
  • Cocktail (or Semi-Formal): Most weddings will fall into this category and if no attire is listed on the invitation, this is the category you will want to dress according to. Cocktail dresses or a “maxi”/full-length dresses are the way to go but you could also wear separates (especially right now, they’re so popular!) Prior to the wedding, take a look at the ceremony & reception location and consider the time of day to help determine the style you’ll feel most comfortable in.
  • Beach/Destination Weddings: Bright colored cocktail dresses or more casual maxi dresses work well at a seaside ceremony. I avoid black but that’s a personal preference because I see it as a time to have a little fun with color. Wear flat shoes/sandals or a wedge heel to ensure you can get around on the sand or grass.
  • Casual: Don’t take this too literally! Stick to sundresses, more casual cocktail dresses, or a nice skirt and blouse.

Always remember to avoid ivory/white/cream..one would think I wouldn’t have to mention this but I’ve seen it!  Stay tuned for real dress ideas to shop this summer!

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Hi, I’m Kelly and I love to inspire clients to celebrate what matters most - life’s greatest moments - through carefully curated event design & flawless execution. I specialize in creating completely custom events that are a beautiful reflection of the couples I serve.

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