Wedding Guest Dress Code Guide

There’s nothing like getting a wedding invitation in the mail and feeling the excitement of knowing you get to see two of your loved ones get married. Naturally, there’s always planning that goes into attending a wedding, especially if you need to travel, but a key part of attending a wedding is finding the right thing to wear! Weddings typically follow set dress codes, so we’re breaking down each different wedding dress code so you know what to look for when choosing your wedding guest outfit!



Starting with the least formal dress code, casual dress codes are just that: casual! This is one of the easiest dress codes to wear, and you likely already have something for this in your closet. The main rule for casual weddings is that although they’re “casual,” there are still a few rules. Jeans, tank tops, and shorts are still typically not accepted. If you’re unsure what to wear, khakis, sundresses, and collared shirts are typically the go-to wardrobe for this type of wedding. 

Semi-Formal or Cocktail


The mid-way point between full-on formal and casual, cocktail or semi-formal attire is an incredibly common dress code at weddings. Shorter formal dresses are encouraged, whether you prefer midi dresses or knee length. A floor-length dress would be too formal for the occasion, so avoid something full-length. For men, a dress shirt and slacks are perfect, and a tie is optional based on the time of day the wedding takes place. 

Black Tie-Optional


This dress code is often the most confusing, as it leaves plenty of room for interpretation. If you’re going to a black-tie optional wedding, it’s good to keep in mind that this dress code is only one step down from black tie. Tuxedos and full-length formal dresses are acceptable, but optional! Dark suits and dressy cocktail attire (think midi dresses and pantsuits) are typical, giving you plenty of options to choose from. 

Black Tie


This dress code is formal. Tuxedos, floor-length gowns, and formal pantsuits are the go-to dress code for this type of wedding. A nice cocktail dress is acceptable depending on the wedding, but it’s always safe to opt for a floor-length gown. 

If you’re looking for the perfect wedding guest dress, book an appointment at Grand Bridal and let us help you find something perfect for your next wedding invitation!