Heed these expert style tips from Charlotte Jenkins.
These wedding guests did their homework.
When it comes to weddings, nothing compares to the amount of prep work the bride puts in. But the guests aren’t completely off the hook: For every ceremony you’re invited to, be prepared to put some thought into what you wear. Stylist Charlotte Jenkins reveals four helpful questions to ask yourself as you stare into the abyss of your closet (or go-to shopping site).
How formal is the wedding?
“The venue is a helpful hint on the formality of a wedding, so do some research ahead of time—go online or ask friends who live in the area if they’ve ever been to that ballroom or beach,” says Charlotte. “And if the bride and groom specifically note a dress code on their invitation, follow it! Black tie means black tie.”
Is the wedding indoors or outdoors?
This requires a bit of strategizing, too. “Check the start and end time as well as the weather forecast for the wedding day and then dress appropriately,” says Charlotte. “If the wedding is outdoors, know the terrain you are expected to walk on, bring sunscreen for daytime events, and pack bug spray and a sweater or shawl for evening.”
Can you walk in your shoes and sit comfortably in your outfit?
“Weddings are not the time or place to break in a new pair of shoes or debut a dress or pants you can barely sit down in,” says Charlotte. “Weddings can turn into a 10-hour affair, so make sure you’re able to survive a marathon of eating drinking and dancing in your outfit.”
How traditional are the bride and groom’s families?
This is crucial when deciding between tasteful and trendy. When in doubt, says Charlotte, take the route that will endear you most to the bride and groom’s parents. “They are the ones who are most likely paying for the wedding,” she notes.