There are over 3 million weddings performed in the United States on the yearly basis. Even though many wedding invitations include a dress code most people are seriously on prepared. Let’s face facts, not many people today goal to formal events of any kind. While many own a nice suit or a very nice dress, wedding formal wear and attire are in an entirely different league. Before you attempt to purchase something special to wear to a wedding it would help to have some inside information.
What is White Tie?
This type of formal wear is at the very top of the dress code hierarchy. Tuxedos – white cummerbund, coat with tails and a white bowtie makes up the ensemble. For women this means a full length formal ball gown in a neutral color.
What is Black Tie?
This is the next wrung down from extremely formal white tie. These weddings are generally held in the evenings and the attire for men consists of a dark tux with a black bowtie. Women are expected to wear a cocktail dress or evening gown.
Formal/Black Tie Optional
This mystifies a lot of people. While a tux is not required it is acceptable. Men can wear a nice formal dark suit instead whereas women are expected to present themselves in a dressy suit, stylish long dress or formal cocktail dress in a neutral color.
This is a hard one but understand that it is an elegant affair and flip flops are not proper attire nor short shorts and jeans. Think instead elegant sundress and lightweight khaki men’s wear. Linen suits work well for this type of wedding.
This is a cross between office chic and dinner at the boss’s mansion. Think dark colors for men with buttoned down shirts in the evening. Dressy skirts and tops for ladies or sundresses for an early afternoon wedding.
This does not mean jeans and a tee, dress pants and a polo shirt for men and a dressy summer dress, skirt or slacks for women.
The bride and groom is the focal point of any wedding so when you choose your own formal attire keep that in mind. Wear nothing that will draw the attention from the guests of honor. One last thought and that is to make sure you consider the length of time that you will be wearing the items you choose, this includes shoes.