The Ultimate Guide to Summer Wedding Dress Codes

Wedding season is upon us, and while the bonds of holy matrimony certainly call for plenty of joy and celebration, figuring out what to wear can pose a bit of a challenge. Dress codes often leave guests wondering how to strike the right balance between looking stylish and adhering to formalities, but it doesn’t have to be so complicated. To help you navigate any upcoming weddings you may have on your calendar, we’ve put together a guide for some of the most common dress codes. 


A cocktail dress code calls for attire that’s a step above casual but not as formal as black-tie. For women, knee-length or midi dresses in fabrics like silk or chiffon are a safe choice. Style yours with stylish heels and tasteful accessories to tie everything together. Men can opt for a tailored suit in a dark color, such as charcoal or navy, paired with a dress shirt, tie, and dress shoes.


Black-tie weddings are typically held in the evening and are considered to be more formal than other events. Women should wear floor-length gowns or sophisticated cocktail dresses in luxurious fabrics like satin or velvet. Heels and statement jewelry can also be used to add a touch of elegance. Men should don a tuxedo with a black bowtie, a crisp white dress shirt, and black patent leather shoes.


Semi-formal dress codes offer a bit more flexibility. Women can wear dresses that fall anywhere between knee-length and full-length with shoes and jewelry of any style. Men can wear tailored suits in neutral colors, paired with a dress shirt and dress shoes. With a semi-formal dress code, ties and bow ties are generally optional.

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