Do you hear the wedding bells? I certainly do! Over the past 18 months, things have been well, interesting. One of the things I think we can all agree on is how hard it must be on those who had to cancel, push back or alter their wedding. On the bright side, those weddings that were put on pause are now on the calendar! With that being said, every weekend has now been filled with events with specific dress codes. I am here to help untangle the confusion of what the dress code means!
When you first start planning your outfit, there are a few things to consider and research. You first need to distinguish the location. Are you on a beach, outdoors, or at a traditional wedding? Keeping the location and the climate of the wedding you are attending in mind is essential! When considering the climate, remember the terrain you will be walking in also! Finally, you need to look at the attire specified on the invitation and do not go outside of them. The dress code is not a suggestion. Now, let’s get into what to wear!
As the weddings we are discussing are in the summer, the weather will most likely be warmer. If you are wearing a strapless or sleeveless dress, conder taking a shawl with you to cover your shoulders and protect you from the sun. I recommend a light cotton or linen material! If you will be walking on a beach or at an outdoor area, stick to block heels and elegant sandals. Absolutely no flip-flops! To stay cool and looking stylish in the season, stay away from dark, heavy fabrics. Search for a light and bright dress, jumpsuit, or pantsuit that will not stick to you and that is appropriate for the season. A great place to look for dresses is Rent the Runway! You can get a high-end dress for a fraction of the cost!
Alrighty, now where are we are headed? For a beach wedding, the attire can be pretty confusing, so I recommend doing your research first. Once you have determined if the ceremony is on the actual beach or on a rooftop or patio, you can then begin to plan out your outfit. If the wedding takes place on a rooftop or patio, you do not need to change what you are wearing. If the attire simply says beach attire, then assume the dress is semi-formal. Go for a maxi dress that is a fun print, breathable and flowy. However, be sure to avoid a loud pattern that distracts from the bride! Beach wedding vibes are fun, comfy, and casual so choose an outfit accordingly. Some great dress styles include wrap dresses, high low dresses, long dresses that just barely drag against the sand.
If the wedding takes place directly on the beach, it is essential you get the shoes correct! Do not wear pumps or stilettos! Go for a block heel or a dressy sandal. Short one-to-two-inch block heels are very on-trend this year and are perfect for not sinking into the sand. To dress up a sandal, go for a design such as a bow on the front or metallic color. A great brand to consider is Gianni Bini from Dillard’s. Additionally, when dressing for a beach wedding, pick fun accessories! Try a woven or beaded purse, and consider adding a braid to your hair! After all, you are at the beach!
If the wedding is outdoors, you have more wiggle room on what you can wear. Similar to a beach wedding, you will most likely have to do some walking on unsteady terrain. In preparation for this, make sure not to wear a tight or long dress. Slip dresses and midi dresses are great options. Also, a floral print brings in a nice pop that allows you to showcase your style without looking like you are battling for attention with the bride. To make sure you don’t break an ankle, find a block heel or a wedge to complete the look. This will give you more surface area to balance on!
So the wedding is downtown and they specify the dress code. No worries, let us break it down! Formal or Black Tie is the most dressed up a bride and groom will ask you to get. You are expected to show up in a long gown that does not show your ankles. If the venue and vibe of the wedding appears to be less sophisticated, a dressy cocktail dress may be appropriate. Long shimmery fabric is a great dress material to keep it formal yet cool. Make sure not to wear black or anything too sparkly. Heels are expected to be worn, but try a block heel or a small one-inch heel if you are not comfortable in them. This will still allow you to dress the part but remain confident as you walk around!
Black Tie optional is just barely a step down from black Tie. Gowns going below the ankle are not a requirement, and cocktail dresses are more acceptable, but do be sure to make sure they are dressy. Jumpsuits and high-low dresses are also great options. If you want to have fun, a wide-leg pantsuit set is a modern take on formal attire! Although more freedom is given to guests on what they can wear as far as fabrics and patterns, this can still be a tricky category to navigate. If you are unsure of what to wear, always dress on the nicer end! Heels are also still requiring and as said previously but they do not have to be tall!
Accessories can be a saver in a Black-Tie optional wedding. It is effortless to wear a neutral dress that could quickly go fancy or casual with earrings! If you are really struggling with how formal you should dress, put a backup pair of earrings in your purse and switch them out if you feel like you should be dressed differently. Cocktail rings and statement necklaces are also great additions to bring elegance to any outfit! Gold drop earrings with a bit of bling are always classic and chic!
A semi-formal wedding is the most straightforward, in my opinion. The length of the dress is not as important as long as the dress is classy. Remember, this is a wedding and not a night on the town. Cocktail dresses or midi dresses paired with a heel or wedge are right on par. Jumpsuits and pantsuits are also fantastic pieces to wear to spice up the attire! Fun jewelry and fun prints are acceptable for a semi-formal wedding. Especially since it is summer, yellow, orange, or pink bring a fun vibe! To complete the outfit, add a hoop earring and a purse!
Personally, I think that casual can seem intimidating but ultimately is the easiest to wear. As long as you don’t wear any denim or cotton, you are good! I love casual weddings because this is when you get to pull out all of those dresses that you have been saving for brunch with the girls and put them to good use! Floral and flowy are two standards to stick to. Sandals and flats are acceptable, as long as they are not flip-flops, and wedges would be highly encouraged. Looking light and bright is key for a casual wedding!
Here’s to dancing the night away at your next wedding!
If you have ever been hesitant to branch out, add some variety to an outfit or walk out of your door with the mentality of ‘who cares I like the outfit,’ summer is the time to do so! For the past few seasons and continuing into this summer, vibrant and neon colors are very much in style! Yes, it’s not for everyone, and don’t worry, I have the classic looks covered as well. No matter if you choose classic or vibrant, you will look amazing with the following tips this summer!
A key to accessorizing, is outfit sandwiches! An “outfit sandwich” is the idea is that you want to alternate colors. For instance, if you have a pink top, you will also want to wear pink shoes. In-between the two would be a different color, the color of your choosing! Now let’s take this idea to accessories. If you are wearing white earrings with a pink top, you would want to have a white purse. Making sandwiches allows you to wear color, patterns, and fun accessories in a cohesive, stylish way!
Let’s talk about statement earrings. Many people, especially with the current trends, are fearful of statement earrings because they think of large, chunky pieces of jewelry that can be heavy and take away from an outfit. However, statement earrings are defined as an earring that grabs someone’s attention. The size, color, or pattern is not mentioned. With that being said, if you are ever in a situation where you need to be a showstopper, I would head straight for the statement earring department. Whether it be colorful, sparkly, or vintage, a statement earring will grab people’s attention and leave you destined for a compliment!
I am a leading fan of colorful earrings! Nothing brings me more joy than spicing up a bland outfit with hot pink earrings! The wonderful thing about colorful earrings is there are so many affordable options. A simple google search will bring you a plethora of unique, colorful, and beautiful pieces that look custom made for your outfit! To create a cohesive look, bring in the earrings’ colors throughout the outfit using outfit sandwiches. If your earrings are pink, try pink nail polish or pink accented bracelets, purses, or shoes!
Classic earrings are everything! No, that does not mean boring studs or plain hoops! A great way to show style is by differentiating yourself in a subtle way, such as in a classic earring. Opposed to choosing a basic hoop or huggee for your everyday earring, go for one with your birthstone, a pearl, or maybe one with artisanship in the design. Not only do these small variant details set you apart from the masses, but they give you a unique style and uniform. Additionally, although gold is trendy, silver is just as acceptable to be worn every day; just make sure that the style is contemporary!
Necklaces are an accessory that people are very opinionated about. Some only like to wear one, and some like to layer three or more. The good thing is that there is no wrong way to wear necklaces! If you want to wear more than one, I have a couple of tips. To begin, a positive is that if your necklaces are minimalist, you can never wear too much. Try a necklace separator to avoid them getting tanged if you struggle. If you desire something more substantial, opt for a chain or herringbone. A bonus with these thicker materials is that they help prevent other necklaces from tangling. Altogether, just make sure that all of your chains are different lengths and that the smaller pendants are at the top!
If you like to wear one necklace (that’s me because it is the easiest, no care option), I have a few tips to make it count. Bringing in a touch of personality or something meaningful to you makes it unique and allows it to pop. If you are looking for a simple go-to necklace, try one with a small jewel such as your birthstone. If you are looking for a pendant, look on Etsy for one to personalize with your name or initials. Personalizing the one necklace gives it meaning and allows it to be a statement!
As with everything this summer, color, and 90s vibes are in style! If you want to jump on the trend, I recommend tying it in with all your other necklaces. If you layer necklaces, maybe switch one out for a blue pendant. If you are going to the beach, try the beaded or pearl necklaces. You can pick and choose the amount you want to dabble in this trend, but it can be fun to bring something new into your wardrobe!
One, three, or five is the umbrella rule to live by! If you go beyond five, well, you already broke the rule, so knock yourself out! The one, three, or five rule is pulled from interior design and is the principle of what attracts and draws the eye’s attention. Have you ever noticed how when bracelets are sold, they are typically sold individually or in packs of three or five? When wearing multiple bracelets, do not be afraid to mix colors, sizes, and metals. Part of the fun is the novelty that it can bring! However, I do have a few tips for you.
To begin, you do not want to cover more than 1/3 of your forearm. Wear the fitted pieces such as your watch close to your hand and stack the bracelets and bangles behind. If you have pieces that you never take off, try mixing in a trendy beaded bracelet or a colorful rope bracelet with a pendant. There is nothing wrong with having jewelry you never take off but bringing in new pieces can pull an outfit together!
Have you noticed how hair accessories are all the rage this year? Around every corner is claw clips, ponytail covers, barrettes, headbands, and many more! If you are generally hesitant to jump on a trend, this is the best one to join! All of these can be found at Amazon, Walmart, Target, or any other store you frequent (like your grocery store). Additionally, there are so many variations. All clips come in an elegant gold or silver, a bold color, or embellished with pearls. The headbands come in bold patterns or solid colors, a knot on top, or a weave texture and can come embellished!
If you are ever in a rush and are throwing on an outfit, I recommend adding a simple hair accessory! They do wonders for pulling outfits together and making you look polished with little to no effort. If you have a bad hair day, a claw clip will save you and look like you put more effort in than a ponytail. Additionally, if it’s humid (like it has been recently), go for a barrette or clip to help keep the hair contained. To add the ‘something’s missing’ element of an outfit, pull out a headband to complete it!
My personal opinion is that you can never have enough purses. They are like shoes; you wear them with every outfit, and you need a new one for every outfit combination. This summer, beaded bags are everywhere. They have been rising as a trend for the last couple of seasons, but they are the most prevalent this summer. Many stores carry them; however, why would you want one that is mass-produced when you can have a custom one? Etsy is stocked with shops that custom make purse straps, clutches, and totes!
For football games, I ordered a custom one that says Hook ’em! Trust me when I say that you feel so special when you can hear people talking about how cool and unique your purse is. On many occasions, I have seen clutches gifted for graduations, weddings, and bridesmaids! They are the perfect personalized gift. For lake or beach days or simply running around town, a beaded monogram on your tote can help you appear stylish!
I hope this post helps you pick out the perfect summer accessories!