Well, we are in the midst of summer, and you know what that means… wedding season is in full swing. Chances are most of you will be attending at least one wedding this summer, maybe more. And while it’s a magical time of love, romance, togetherness and (hopefully) an open bar or two – it also means you need a dress.
We know finding a dress that’s appropriate to wear to a wedding isn’t always the easiest task women face. Trust, we’ve helped many a woman on her dress-for-a-wedding hunt and know it’s not nearly as easy as the boyfriends or husbands waiting for them seem to think it should be. There are many things women have to consider when purchasing a dress for any event, but weddings have a checklist all their own. Here are a few things you should to keep in mind when choosing a dress to wear to a wedding:
- Wedding location: Is the wedding in a church? On the beach? On a farm? In a park? At a country club? The setting of the wedding obviously effects what styles of dress would be appropriate. A bohemian style that would look perfect on the beach would seem somewhat out of place at a formal church wedding.
- How formal is the wedding? Cocktail dress or sundress? Somewhere in between? If you’re not sure, never underestimate the ability of accessories to dress an outfit up or down. Just like a cardigan can make a cocktail dress more casual, killer heels and some sparkle can make a sundress more formal.
- Colour: This one depends on the bride and what her preferences are, but as a general rule, avoid all white or off-white dresses – that colour is usually reserved for the bride. Same thing goes for a completely black outfit for a summer wedding – you can get away with it and look fabulous in the process, but make sure to add some colourful accessories. That being said, we encourage you to wear colour – it’s warm outside, the sun is (hopefully) shining and it’s a celebration, so dress the part!
- Does it look good? Don’t settle for just any dress – you want it to look good! There is often a chance that you will bump in to an ex (or future!) boyfriend at a wedding, so dressing to impress is always a good idea. Even if you couldn’t care less about impressing the people at the wedding, remember: photos are forever, and you just might care one day (most likely the day you get tagged in one of those pictures on facebook).
- Will this dress scandalize Grandma? Sometimes people don’t consider this as much as they perhaps should in their quest to find a dress that looks good on them. You don’t have to be completely chaste, but choose a dress that’s not too short or revealing – especially if it’s a church wedding. Do yourself a favour and try not to test the pacemakers of the elderly guests in attendance.
- Price: However, all the above doesn’t matter if the dress isn’t within your price range. Weddings are wonderful, but not known for their inexpensive nature. Once you factor in all the costs associated with them, buying a whole new outfit can seem a bit daunting (just imagine how the bride must feel!) especially if you have more than one wedding to go to. Luckily there are a ton of fabulous budget-friendly options out there right now as most stores are having their summer sales. We for one, have several lovely dresses in stock (some sale, some regular priced) ranging from $30 – $100 that would be perfect for a wedding – it’s just a matter of finding the one that’s right for you and the occasion.
And because some of us are visual learners, we thought we would include a few pictures to illustrate our points above. Here are a few of our top wedding guest dress picks:
(left-right) Blue/Grey Little Flower Print --- Multi Peonies Print --- Lavender Little Flowers Print (all $96)
The above dresses are all the same style and cut, but just in different prints (can you tell we loved it?)
This style is perfect to wear to a wedding – it’s knee length, has wide straps so you can still wear a bra and a neckline that’s flattering without being too low-cut. It’s also dressy, without being too dressy, which makes it easy to dress up or down to match the feel of the wedding. Plus, since the cut of the dress is vintage inspired, it’s very feminine and romantic. All in all, pretty much perfect wedding attire.
(left-right) Apricot Fan Dress ($125) --- Apricot One-Shoulder Dress (SALE $89) --- Apricot Lace Dress ($135)
One of the things we love most about summer are the yummy bright colours that make their way in to the stores. One of our favourite colours for dresses this season is apricot (or coral, or melon… whatever you call it, we like it). Although brighter colours are perfectly acceptable all year round, they’re far more commonplace in the summer when the sun is shining, the mood is relaxed and, well, people are more tanned.
(left-right) Tropical Belted Dress in Black ($69) --- St Tropez Dress ($96) --- Tropical Belted Dress in Coral ($69)
For those of you who tend to shy away from colour, a print can be a great solution. Although the first two dresses above are black and white, and navy and white, their tropical prints make them great for a summer wedding. We’ve also included the third dress (which is the same dress as the first, but in a lovely coral colour) as an example of how a bright colour seems less daunting when it’s balanced out in a print by a more neutral colour.
These are just a few basic tips we came up with, but we would love to hear from you as well – what are your wedding dress shopping tips? What has worked (or not worked) for you in the past?