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Etiquette

Attire

So, I know we are not supposed to "tell people what to wear" but I've been having trouble with people asking me and I am not sure what is best. To clarify, my venue is a farm, the ceremony is "outdoors" but inside one of the barns, and the reception is inside a building on the property in the evening. Should I indicate anything on my invitations or just handle each inquiry as they come up? 

Re: Attire

  • Do not indicate anything about attire, your guests will likely look up the venue and get a sense of the event. If people ask, you can let them know what the wedding party will be wearing to give them an even clearer idea.

    If guests will be walking on grass or in barns with straw, that may be something to mention on your website (if you have one) or spread by word of mouth as it could impact their choice of footwear.

    OurWildKingdomshort+sassy
  • Ok, so if I indicate something on my website such as "About the venue" is it ok to put my website on my invites or my save the dates? I was planning on putting it on the save the dates.

  • ellamber said:

    Ok, so if I indicate something on my website such as "About the venue" is it ok to put my website on my invites or my save the dates? I was planning on putting it on the save the dates.


    The STD is a great place to list the website.  I love reading them, but not all guests do, so if there's anything important for them to know (certain type of footwear required for outdoor terrain, ceremony with religious required dress code), an FYI email or word of mouth would also be good.
    OurWildKingdom
  • Ok, so Save the dates it is! Thanks!
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    edited July 2017
    I go against the grain on this one.

    I use to work at a 5-star resort in the islands.   We did over 100 weddings a year.   Some wedding were black tie.  Others were casual.  Most were somewhere in the middle.

      The venue did NOT dictate how formal the wedding was.    We had $300 a plate wedding that were casual, $50 a plate weddings that were more formal.  The vibe and attire were all based on the couple's interpretation. 

    So I'm of the believe if your wedding is outside of your standard church and reception hall,country club wedding there is nothing wrong with steering the guests in the direction you would prefer.  Prefer meaning, you are not telling them what to wear, just the overall vibe of the wedding.

    For example, we had a beach wedding.  I was in a gown, but my husband flat out refused to wear a jacket or tie.   Both our families had never been to a beach wedding.  Pretty much only Catholic church weddings.   They are dresses and suit attire wedding guests.    Add in we had a formal meal.  I.e  raw bar, 10+ apps, sit down meal, full premium open bar, etc plus it was a  Saturday night.  

     Well, we sent mixed signals.    They were all confused.  So on our FAQ insert in the wedding we said something like

    The ceremony is on the actual beach.  There will be a shoe valet available.    Jackets and ties are not necessary.  


    We felt this let the guests know that they most likely would want to take off their shoes.  Jackets and ties would be too hot.   Thus women would understand not to wearing formal gear.   

    Verbally when asked I often said the groom wearing a Tommy Bahama button down and linen pants.   So the guests understood the vibe we were going for.


    I feel like your barn wedding is like ours.  Most of your guests might not have attended one.   And quite frankly one couple might have a more causal barn wedding when another has a more formal one.   I've seen it happen here.


    So, I would do what we did.   Let them know on the website and verbally.  Plus tell the big mouths of your group.  Every group has one.

    Our guests were appreciative of the information.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    short+sassyahoywedding
  • In the last 10 years, getting married in a barn has become way more common. Something about burlap and mason jars.....

    Anyway....I don't think you need to provide a ton of information unless it's going to help people. What I mean by that is telling them that the wedding will be outside on grass is helpful for people considering heels. Telling people it's "laid back casual" is moreso telling people what to wear than it is helpful. KWIM? 
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    STARMOON44InLoveInQueensSP29
  • SP29SP29 member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers


    In the last 10 years, getting married in a barn has become way more common. Something about burlap and mason jars.....

    Anyway....I don't think you need to provide a ton of information unless it's going to help people. What I mean by that is telling them that the wedding will be outside on grass is helpful for people considering heels. Telling people it's "laid back casual" is moreso telling people what to wear than it is helpful. KWIM? 


    Agreed. You can be helpful as to the venue and location without telling your guests what to wear.

    Which is exactly what I think you did @lyndausvi.

    "Ceremony is on the beach. Shoe valet available. Jackets not required."
    "Ceremony on grass. Reception outdoors under a tent".

    All very different than "rustic country chic" (no one knows what these phrases really mean- we had a topic on here recently where an OP said "church clothes" and it was quite evident that various posters had various ideas on what constituted church clothes), or saying, "Don't wear heels", "don't wear long dresses", etc. Guests can wear what they want, you just want to helpful so they can figure out how THEY will be most comfortable.
    short+sassy

  • ellamber said:

    That is what I have been doing. People have been asking me what to wear, so I just tell them what the venue is like and say "whatever is most comfortable" or "heres what I would wear as a guest." My confusion came from people asking what my "theme" was which.. is wedding. In a barn. No theme, not rustic country chic or burlap and babys breath or whatever. So what i'm going to do is put a blurb on the website about the venue.  I will let them know what aspects would be outdoors (weather permitting). 

    I don't know if its just me, but I feel like people are trying to make my wedding more complicated than it needs to be. They want to know my color scheme and my theme and what getting ready outfits I'm going to wear. I'm just trying to have a wedding.



    That's how I felt- people kept asking what my theme and colors were... I was like uh, I don't have colors and I'm getting married is my theme?
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    DrillSergeantCatSP29PrettyGirlLost[Deleted User]
  • I have never been to a themed wedding in my life.

    SP29PrettyGirlLost
  • DrillSergeantCatDrillSergeantCat Oklahoma City, OK member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary First Answer

    ellamber said:

    That is what I have been doing. People have been asking me what to wear, so I just tell them what the venue is like and say "whatever is most comfortable" or "heres what I would wear as a guest." My confusion came from people asking what my "theme" was which.. is wedding. In a barn. No theme, not rustic country chic or burlap and babys breath or whatever. So what i'm going to do is put a blurb on the website about the venue.  I will let them know what aspects would be outdoors (weather permitting). 

    I don't know if its just me, but I feel like people are trying to make my wedding more complicated than it needs to be. They want to know my color scheme and my theme and what getting ready outfits I'm going to wear. I'm just trying to have a wedding.


    I didn't have a theme either. It's a wedding, not a kid's birthday party. 

    I posted pictures of the venues on our website and if anyone asked me what to wear, I just told them to remember that the ceremony venue was on grass. 
  • Meh, I've seen some themes and some are looser than others.   We got engaged at a state park on the water.   Our loose theme was just the local beach area.   Favors were glass tea light holders that looked like sail boats and colors were the blues and greens you'd find in hydrangeas.   Hydrangeas were a flower in all the bouquets and centerpieces.

    A few years ago a Chinese friend incorporated his heritage not just into the cuisine but into the decor / favors of the reception.   

    I've never seen any theme extend into something where guests were asked to dress differently but I've definitely seen themes in some regard. 
  • The time of day, the venue, and the formality of the invitation typically tell a guest what to wear to a wedding (or any event). If for some reason these aren't adequate to convey they type of event you're going for, you can spread info by word of mouth or on the website as others have suggested. 

    If I'm asking someone what I should wear to an event it's because I don't want to stand out. I don't want to show up in a sundress when everyone else is in formal gowns, or wear a formal gown when everyone else is in nice pants and tank tops. 
    SP29

  • MandyMost said:

    The time of day, the venue, and the formality of the invitation typically tell a guest what to wear to a wedding (or any event). If for some reason these aren't adequate to convey they type of event you're going for, you can spread info by word of mouth or on the website as others have suggested. 

    If I'm asking someone what I should wear to an event it's because I don't want to stand out. I don't want to show up in a sundress when everyone else is in formal gowns, or wear a formal gown when everyone else is in nice pants and tank tops. 


    This is what I was thinking as well, but it seems people are more concerned about fitting into my "theme" rather than just dressing how they would like to attend a wedding. I did put a little blurb about the wedding venue on my site so hopefully that will help. Most of my guests are from a very metro area so I could see how they might not have an idea of what to wear to a wedding on a farm/in a barn.

    My wedding dress seems especially fancy to me so if someone did "overdress" they wouldn't necessarily look out of place. 
  • I think people may want to know your theme and they may also want to make sure that they're dressed appropriately for the area.

    Will your barn have air conditioning?   Will it have any ability to be cool?  

    I think a blurb on the wedding website and possibly an enclosure card can help.  I'd want to know right away if your barn wasn't going to be air conditioned in summer.  That changes my attire right away. 
    MandyMostSP29
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