Summer is the most popular time of year for weddings, and if you’ve been invited to one (or several!) chances are you’re wondering what on earth you’re going to wear.
If you’re the bride or groom, you have it relatively easy— 99% of the time, wedding attire is pretty straightforward.
But for guests, the rules are a little less clear.
Do you go formal? Casual? Something in between?
I’m here to help you navigate the often-confusing world of summer wedding guest attire.
Let’s explore some tips on what to wear (and not to wear) to summer nuptials.
When it comes to wedding guest attire, there are really only three things you need to keep in mind:
- Personal style
As long as your outfit meets those three criteria, you’ll be good to go!
With that said, here are a few specific items that make great summer wedding guest attire:
A sundress is always a good option for a summer wedding. Look for a dress that falls somewhere between casual and formal— something that you could easily see yourself wearing to a nice dinner out with friends. You’ll be comfortable yet stunning for the summer wedding and have a beautiful dress you can utilize afterwards.
Khaki pants or skirt
Khaki is an incredibly versatile fabric and it can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. This goes for men too. For a summer wedding, I would suggest pairing khaki pants or a skirt with a nicer blouse or top.
A long, flowing maxi dress is another great option for summer wedding attire. And who couldn’t use another maxi in her wardrobe? Again, you’ll want to look for something that strikes the perfect balance between casual and formal, then pull it out again whenever it suits you!
Dressy shorts are another great option for both men and women. Pair them with a nice blouse or polo shirt and you’re good to go! Just be sure that your shorts are tailored and fall at or just above the knee— no one wants to see your cheeks hanging out at a wedding!
When it comes down to it, shoes are really just an extension of your personal style. So if you normally opt for sneakers over heels, don’t feel like you need to break out the stilettos just because it’s a wedding!
However, if you do choose to wear heels, pick something that’s comfortable but still stylish. No one wants sore feet while dancing the night away!
The 5 Dos and Don’ts of Summer Wedding Guest Style
Looking for a quick list of do’s and don’ts for easy preparation as a summer wedding guest? Let’s run through the a few to get your ideas flowing.
If the wedding is taking place outdoors, you’ll want to dress accordingly. A beach wedding calls for something a little more casual than a formal church ceremony. On the other hand, if the reception is being held at a fancy country club, you may want to consider dressing up a bit more. The key is to be comfortable — you don’t want to be tugging at your clothes all night long.
This one should be a no-brainer, but we still see it happen from time to time. Unless you’re specifically asked to wear white (in which case, congratulations — you’re probably a close friend or family member of the couple!), steer clear of this color.
The last thing you want to do is upstage the bride on her big day!
A great way to add a pop of personality to your wedding guest outfit is through your accessories. If you’re wearing a simple black dress, jazz it up with some fun earrings or a statement necklace.
Just be careful not to go too overboard — you don’t want your accessories to overshadow your outfit as a whole.
4. Don’t: Feel you need to wear heels
We know, we know — you just bought those fabulous new stilettos and you desperately want an excuse to show them off. But believe us when we say that those shoes are not worth it if you have to spend the entire night teetering around on your toes.
Opt for a nice pair of flats or wedges instead — your feet will thank you later!
5. Do: Wear light colors
Light-colored clothing is perfect for summer because it reflects light instead of absorbing it. White, cream, pale pink, light blue, and other similar colors are all great choices for summer wedding guest attire.
6. Stick to breathable fabrics
When it comes to summer wedding guest attire, fabrics such as linen, cotton, and silk are your best bet.
These natural fabrics are light and airy, which will help you stay cool and comfortable even in the hottest weather. Plus, they tend to be more wrinkle-resistant than other fabrics, which is always a bonus when you’re packing for a trip.
7. Choose comfortable shoes
Let’s be honest — most women would rather be comfortable than stylish when it comes to footwear.
Luckily, there are plenty of cute and comfortable shoes that are perfect for summer weddings. A classic pair of white sneakers or canvas slip-ons can be dressed up or down depending on the rest of your outfit, while sandals or ballet flats are ideal for more formal affairs.
Just make sure your shoes are comfortable enough to last all night — there’s nothing worse than being stuck in heels when all you want to do is dance the night away!
8. Don’t: Wear anything too tight or revealing
Remember that you’re going to a summer wedding, not a nightclub — so leave the bodycon dresses and skimpy shorts at home.
Instead, opt for something that’s both chic and modest.
A flowy maxi dress or an off-the-shoulder midi dress are always good choices.
9.Don’t Go overboard with the jewelry
We get it — you want to look glamorous at the wedding! But there’s such thing as too much jewelry, especially in the heat of summer.
A statement necklace or a pair of earrings is all you need to take your outfit from day to night. Anything more than that runs the risk of looking tacky or over-the-top.
At the end of the day, it’s important to remember that fashion should be fun!
If you feel beautiful and confident in what you’re wearing, that confidence will shine through — no matter what you have on.
So go ahead and try out that new trend you’ve been dying to try — who knows, it might just become your new favorite thing!
Now, don’t get us wrong! We aren’t saying you can’t get dolled up for a beautiful summer wedding. But there are still plenty of ways to make statement with your outfit while staying comfortable in the summer heat. Here are a few tips:
Choose a stand-out color
Summer is the perfect time to experiment with bold, vibrant colors — so don’t be afraid to go for something eye-catching!
Opt for a fun print or pattern
Floral prints, gingham, stripes, and polka dots are all great choices for summer wedding guest attire. Just be sure to avoid anything that’s too loud or busy — you want your outfit to make a statement, not overwhelm the rest of your look.
When it comes to accessories, more is definitely more. Statement earrings, oversize sunhats, and colorful scarves are all great ways to add a pop of personality to your outfit.
Go for an unexpected silhouette
If you’re looking to stand out from the crowd, choose an unexpected silhouette for your summer wedding guest attire.
A voluminous skirt, a one-shoulder dress, or wide-leg pants are all great choices. Just make sure whatever you choose is still comfortable — you don’t want to be stuck in something that’s too tight or constricting!
Summer Wedding Attire for Men
Men also have an array of items to choose from when dressing for a summer wedding. There are lots of ways to show up well put together for the big event while still staying cool and comfortable in the heat. We suggest considering:
1. A light colored suit
2. A dress shirt in a light fabric
3. Khaki trousers
5. Linen pants
6. Polished shoes
7. A Panama hat or fedora
8. Sunglasses (can’t forget those!)
Summer weddings are the perfect opportunity to have some fun with your fashion choices — so don’t be afraid to experiment!
Just remember to keep the venue and dress code in mind, and to choose something that makes you feel confident and comfortable. With these tips, you’ll be sure to find the perfect summer wedding guest outfit in no time.
Plus with the dos and don’ts of summer wedding guest style, you should have no problem nailing that perfect look for any occasion!
Just remember to stay true to yourself, have fun with it, and most importantly —enjoy yourself!