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Wedding attire explained

Its Wedding Season! Yes ma’am it is that time we all love/hate and we are here to help you #stayprept as always. We'll cover attire types from casual to black tie, and give you detailed peaks into who to do, and what not to do.

Most invitations will give you a good idea of what sort of attire the Bride and Groom would like to see you in. A good rule of thumb is don’t wear colors the bridal party is in...and don’t wear white! Other than that, you’ll want to follow whatever instructions the invite or wedding website denotes. When in doubt- do not ask the bride! If there is anything you take away from this guide, please for the love of love let it be and “do not ask the bride!” She is overwhelmed and flooded with questions on the daily, so be a doll and ask her Maid of Honor, or Mother, or ...ask our team!

That's right, you can chat with us (the Prept Team) anytime in our app and book your own personalized style sesh to get styled this wedding season so we can take the guesswork out of the equation and curate the perfect looks for you. We also have some shoppable looks per attire type in the Shop section of our app that are worth checking out!

Okay now that we have the baseline covered, lets dive right in and get you ready to be the stylish and most prepared guest at this season’s wedding.


The casual wedding, don’t we all love it? No stress, no shopping necessary, just a good dig through your closet and you most likely will find what you need! So, what do you need? Casual generally means nothing too dressy. Whereas cocktail & up would communicate nothing too laid back. Nonetheless, you’re still attending someone’s special day, so you’ll want to look nice, clean, and tailored! (So maybe no sneakers) Think going to a graduation party, or church on a weekday! You want to be comfortable, everyday, and presentable. A dress isn’t necessary, but you probably don’t want to wear jeans either. Let’s look at some dos and don’ts.

Do: Blouses, (non-denim) pants, sandals, wedges, (non sneaker) shoes, casual sun/summer dresses, skirts, even a denim jacket over top would be appropriate! You don’t want to look too over done, so don’t stress over getting heavy handed with the makeup or hair. Be you! Be comfortable!

Don’t: High stilettos, heavy makeup, professional up-do, gowns, denim, sneakers, t-shirts, sweats, hoodies.


First things first, thank this bride because who doesn’t love an excuse to party on the beach?! Beach weddings are great because it’s pretty niche and gives you a good idea of what the feel of the evening is going to be. Beach weddings tend to be more natural/laid back in nature, but not quite a backyard casual wedding either. You’ll want to wear something breezy, comfortable, and light weight. Think like you’re going to a nice dinner in the Hamptons or on a yacht! You’d dress comfortably, but presentable. Loose dresses, skirts and pants, linen materials or natural fabrics like cottons are great for this kind of event! So lets dive into some dos and don’ts:

Do: Wear light weight, comfortable fabrics, short to long dresses, breezy pants & blouses, wedges, sandals, sun hats, sun glasses Don’t: Jeans, gowns, shorts, bathing suit coverups, bathing suits (you’re not slick with that string bikini peaking out of your dress!), stiletto heals, beach bags, sneakers

Remember, you may be at the beach, but you are not beachin’! You’re there for an event and want to present yourself respectfully, and comfortably for the environment, but not casually.


So, if you haven’t noticed, each category is really a combination of the ones before and after it. So following suite, “cocktail” is going to be more dressy than casual, but not quite formal (which hint hint, is next up.) So, what can you get away with for cocktail wear? Lots! Theres a fun kind of freedom with this category. You’ll want to think anywhere from a dressy holiday event, to your middle school dances. Cute, comfortable, show a little leg & self expression if you like, without being too dressy or casual. You want to aim for flirty and playful and you’ve nailed cocktail! Feel free to take out your knee length dress from the Christmas party, or your LBD for wine night with the girls. Just don’t bring the work slacks. I repeat work slacks- NO GO. Every cocktail bride will thank you for that. So now that we have an idea, lets touch on the dos and donts:

Do: LBD, above the knee dresses, stilettos, block heels, fun jewelry/makeup, non-revealing “club style” dresses, t-length dresses and flats

Don’t: Jeans, slacks, ball gowns, sun dresses


Not to be confused with Black Tie (which is a little dressier) formal attire is a more common theme for weddings. For formal wear you’ll have some options as it’s a combination of cock tail attire and black tie. Meaning you can get away with an evening gown, or an elegant cocktail style! Something like a t-length dress would be perfect! But you’re totally in the green if you’re feeling a full length as well. The formal and up category is about class, elegance and presenting yourself in an expressive, yet still refined way. Heres your dos and don’ts:

Do: Elegant, classy styles, understated jewelry, nicely tailored dresses, heels, evening gowns, below the knee dresses, woman’s tux, fun necklines.

Don’t: Revealing cuts, bold fashion jewelry, sun dresses, sandals/wedges, short (above the knee) dresses, shorts sets.

Black Tie

Black tie is the crème de la crème of elegant dressing. Think back to your prom days (but maybe less glitter and sparkles? No? Just me?) Anyways! Black tie is your free range to go all out like you’re attending to Oscars! Best heels, floor length gown, every hair in it’s place, makeup, lip, earrings! Everything woman! Feel free to be you and find something that makes you feel your best while staying conservative and classy. The Black Tie Wedding is not the wedding you want to spend 30min getting ready for. You’ll want to really reserve time to put your best foot forward. SO! Heres some dos and donts:

Do: Full length gown/tuxedo, high heels, subtle prints or neutrals, classy jewelry & makeup

Don’t: Cropped pants or dresses, above the knee, bold prints, wedges/sandals, plunging necklines

Okay, that's all for now! Download our app to shop some of our picks for this year's Wedding Season and browse inspo below as well.



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