How to Be the Most Elegant Guest
I have always lived the moment when I’m invited to a wedding with great joy, someone close decided to get married and that’s a reason to rejoice. I don’t know if it’s ever happened to you that you know exactly what you’re going to wear, but sometimes inspiration is completely lacking and you don’t know what to wear or you’re not sure if what you have chosen is appropriate or not.
For men, it seems easier to get it right since their options in terms of the dress code are somewhat limited. But for women the great flexibility of our wardrobes is, precisely, what generates doubts since there are different outfits we can use for a wedding and we don’t always get it right or wear it the right way. In any case, the characteristics and the time of the event shall set the guidelines to pick the right outfit.
All About Comfort and Naturalness
What’s most important when picking your outfit for a wedding or any other event requiring a certain protocol, is to dress comfortably. Understanding comfort as the choice of an outfit that, within the protocol of the event, is faithful to our daily style, the idea is to dress appropriately and not feel like we’re wearing a costume. At the end of the day, comfort is an indispensable quality for elegance.
Elegance is able to show naturally the best of each of us, dressing appropriately for each occasion, always selecting the outfits that look best on us, promoting natural beauty and concealing our defects.
In any case, always taking naturalness into account, it is convenient to consider the protocol for guests at an event for some of these occasions, not only to guarantee that we will not fail, but to show respect and consideration towards the host, since it wouldn’t be respectful to attend a wedding in jeans or go to a Sunday family lunch in a cocktail dress, for example.
So, in addition to naturalness and common sense, these recommendations on etiquette for wedding guests will make you an extraordinary guest.
If the wedding is in the morning, even if it extends to mid-afternoon, the protocol indicates that the most appropriate dress is a short suit. Short suits allow for several options that could include a skirt with a blazer or a straight trouser with a jacket, another option is to wear a dress with a matching jacket, coat, shawl or wrap, depending on the time of the year. In the case of a shawl or a wrap, we will always wear one if the dress has a low neckline and it is knee length. With the appropriate accessories, a jumpsuit can be acceptable both for morning and evening weddings.
In the case of morning weddings, it is acceptable to wear a coloured outfit or pieces with different colours, considering that necklines should be discreet and the back must be covered up.
You can wear a smaller hat, headpiece or wide-brimmed hat, but we must consider that, whatever you pick, you will have to wear it during the entire wedding, including the reception, so if you’re not sure if you’re comfortable it is preferable not to wear anything or to pick out something small. In regard to the shoes, they should be preferably leather, elegant and with a slim sole, always closed or open at the back with a medium size heel, although flats are also acceptable.
As accessories, it is advisable to wear jewels or high-quality costume jewellery, that provide more or less style to the outfit, although moderation is always the key. The handbag can be small or medium, it can be crafted from different materials, but should not have gemstones or sequins.
If the wedding is at night, there are two options, you can wear a cocktail dress or a long dress. However, in the case of weddings, it is advisable to pick a cocktail dress, since the long dresses should be reserved for the bride, the matron of honour and the bridesmaids, if there were any. We must ask the bride if we wish to wear a long dress, although currently there is no inconvenience in wearing a long evening dress, as long as it goes down to the floor. The dress must be crafted from high quality fabrics such as natural silk, satin, crepe, lace or velvet, gemstones and sequins are also acceptable, even on accessories such as the handbag, which should be a clutch.
The gown may be low cut, or have straps or a plunging back, but remember that you should cover up with a shawl if the ceremony is religious. In this case, shoes should be stilettos, sandals or mules. At night you can wear bigger jewels, although always with measure.
The most recommendable option for a night-time wedding would be a cocktail suit, which can also be worn during the day on very informal events depending on the dress-code.
The cocktail suit is a blazer and a skirt or a dress with a jacket and the maximum length of this type of dress is between the knee and the ankle. The coat is no longer being used for night-time weddings.
The suit will be made in quality, noble and light fabrics. Since it is a night suit it can have embroidery, gemstone embroideries and other details. It is convenient to avoid black because it is commonly associated with mourning and, obviously avoid white, which is reserved for the bride. However, you can wear a white blouse and a skirt or trousers that are in another colour, but never a total white look.
You can wear a small hat with this sort of outfit, although it’s better if we pick a headpiece, the shoe will have a medium or high heel, you can wear a small metal, tortoiseshell or gemstone clutch and jewels.
These are the basic suggestions to consider when picking the perfect look for a wedding guest, following these dress code recommendations and being natural and using common sense when getting dressed, you will shine as a guest at the next wedding you go to.