Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Summer Wedding Style

As summer events fill our calendars, the number of weddings we attend seem to increase exponentially. While dress codes used to be clear cut and easy to decipher, today's couples often prefer not to indicate a dress code at all or choose a dress code of their own unique design (how does one accommodate a 'sophisticated creative city casual' dress code, what does that mean?).

Use the nature of the invitation and event details as your cues to choosing an appropriate
outfit for a special occasion . For summer weddings, note the formality of the invitation, and the event time and location as guides. An invite made of layers of beautiful textured papers with embossed printing and caligraphy indicates higher formality than an evite or self-printed invite. Similarly, an evening (if the event begins after 5PM) or banquet hall affair indicates more formality than a daytime or outdoor affair which are more casual.

Daytime or Outdoor Weddings:
  • Choose daytime fabrics such as cotton eyelet, silk jersey, layered chiffon or linen for a daytime dress or non-corporate pant combinations.
  • If the ceremony is taking place in a house of worship, remember to maintain respect for the traditions there. It is customary to keep shoulders covered with a pashmina or delicate cardigan and to keep skin exposure discreet and tasteful.
  • Keep heels lower, or, if you are attending a garden or outdoor ceremony, choose wedges or flats that will keep you from sinking into the ground.
  • Glitter and sheen are generally reserved for evening purposes.
  • Make up should look polished and natural, dramatic make up should be reserved for nights out on the town.
  • Day suits of cotton poplin or cotton blends (with silk or linen) in lighter colours are always appropriate.
  • Have fun with your shirt, this is a great time to wear that patterned shirt that's just a bit too much for the office!
  • Keep shoes polished and fashionable. Monk straps, or a casual cap toe or slip on style in burgundy, honey or cognac...brown and black are just too staid for this type of affair!
  • Ties may be unnecessary for a casual affair, having a suit or sports jacket will complete your look and take you into the cooler weather nicely.
After 5 and Formal Weddings

  • Formal affairs call for formal attire. Classy, fun cocktail and formal gowns (if the invitation stipulates black or white tie) rule here. Keep skin exposure tasteful.
  • Shoes evening shoes (pumps or open toe) go with evening dresses. Flip flops, slip ons and sneakers should be left at home!
  • A small evening bag and delicate shawl or wrap complete your evening look. This is not the place for hoodies, jean jackets or backpacks.
  • Lightweight dark or dressy suits are appropriate for evening, tuxedos if black tie is stipulated exchanging your dinner jacket for a tail-coat with white bow tie and waistcoat if white tie is required (these code of dress are increasingly rare and occur in evening only).
  • Shoes should be more formal, black laceups or tuxedo shoes.
  • Grooming should be neat and clean
Most important is that your attire is suitable as well as comfortable. Make sure that you not only look great, but that you feel confident and happy - and able to dance!

With these notes, it will be easy to enjoy your summer wedding affairs.