Etiquette

Black tie optional

245

Re: Black tie optional

  • cindyn9178cindyn9178 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011

    I find it interesting that everybody on this board finds this so rude and forbidden, yet nearly everyone on the NJ board sees no problem with it. So does that mean ALL of the NJ girls are completely lacking manners and etiquette?

    In any case, I have seen "black tie optional" a couple times on an invite and never found it rude whatsoever. I wouldn't take it as the bride "telling me what to wear". I would take it as a clear indication that it was going to be a more formal wedding. I would understand it to mean "no jeans, khakis, and if I wanted to wear a floor length gown, or  a guy wanted to wear a tuxedo, he wouldn't be out of place". In fact, if I received an invitation that didn't say "black tie optional" and wanted to wear a floor length gown, that's when I would be worried I'd be the only one.

    In my area at least, it is customary to wear a cocktail dress to a wedding, whether it is on a Friday night, Saturday night, Sunday afternoon or whatever. I have attended weddings in other states and areas where people dressed drastically more casual (wearing jeans, sneakers, etc). So there is definitely a clear difference in how people typically dress for a wedding.

    @Kalpi108 - you said "that includes a fully stocked bar all night, a seated 3 or 4 course meal with tableside service, and a live band. If you want your guests to go all out with their clothing, the hosts have to go all out for the event".
    I don't know specifically about OP's wedding, but at least in my experience, MOST weddings in NJ include all of items  that you specified. So therefore, we "go all out for the event", so our guests should be dressed appropriately. If a wedding included all of those things, and someone showed up wearing jeans, wouldn't THAT be rude to the bride and groom? Are they going to kick them out or say something to them? No, they're not. But it is still rude.

    Also, some PPs said that is is extremely rude to say "black tie optional" because you are telling your guests how to dress, then others said "black tie" is ok, because it is either one or the other. So which is it? Is one rude but the other isn't? Just out of curiosity, what does etiquette say, since this is the E-board?

    The common theme on this board seems to be about what is rude/isn't rude. So why is it that most people who ask one of those questions are given such rude responses?

    LibertyinmyLife
  • cindyn9178cindyn9178 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Nevermind, I answered my own question.
    According to Martha Stewart Wedding Etiquette Advisor: Clicky
    "If your event won't include a full meal, it's courteous to inform your guests. Use phrasing such as "and afterward for cocktails" instead of the classic "at the reception."

    If you want to stress the importance of the style of dress -- black tie, for instance, or casual attire -- place that information in the lower right corner, or on the reception card.

    The only thing that should not be included anywhere on your invitation -- not even as an insert -- is your registry information."

    Also, from Martha Stewart (Clicky)
    "For a black tie optional event, guests can always wear the same attire as for a black tie event. For guests who want to go a bit more casual, gentleman can wear a dark suit with a white shirt and conservative tie. (Note: Not every etiquette expert thinks the "optional" phraseology is necessary, but it does serve to emphasize that a tux is not required.) Women can feel free to wear dressy separates if they choose."

    ETA: I apologize, my links above aren't working correcty.
    Here are the links:

    Invites - http://www.marthastewartweddings.com/228634/wedding-invitation-wording/@center/272440/wedding-etiquette-adviser#/148046

    Attire - http://www.marthastewartweddings.com/228438/wedding-guest-attire/@center/272440/wedding-etiquette-adviser#/144361

  • redheadfsuredheadfsu member
    2500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:f347443f-71d0-4ac4-abba-a28385a569ea">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]I find it interesting that everybody on this board finds this so rude and forbidden, yet nearly everyone on the NJ board sees no problem with it. So does that mean ALL of the NJ girls are completely lacking manners and etiquette? In any case, I have seen "black tie optional" a couple times on an invite and never found it rude whatsoever. I wouldn't take it as the bride "telling me what to wear". I would take it as a clear indication that it was going to be a more formal wedding. I would understand it to mean "no jeans, khakis, and if I wanted to wear a floor length gown, or  a guy wanted to wear a tuxedo, he wouldn't be out of place". In fact, if I received an invitation that didn't say "black tie optional" and wanted to wear a floor length gown, that's when I would be worried I'd be the only one. In my area at least, it is customary to wear a cocktail dress to a wedding, whether it is on a Friday night, Saturday night, Sunday afternoon or whatever. I have attended weddings in other states and areas where people dressed drastically more casual (wearing jeans, sneakers, etc). So there is definitely a clear difference in how people typically dress for a wedding. @Kalpi108 - you said " that includes a fully stocked bar all night, a seated 3 or 4 course meal with tableside service, and a live band. If you want your guests to go all out with their clothing, the hosts have to go all out for the event". I don't know specifically about OP's wedding, but at least in my experience, MOST weddings in NJ include all of items  that you specified. So therefore, we "go all out for the event", so our guests should be dressed appropriately. If a wedding included all of those things, and someone showed up wearing jeans, wouldn't THAT be rude to the bride and groom? Are they going to kick them out or say something to them? No, they're not. But it is still rude. Also, some PPs said that is is extremely rude to say "black tie optional" because you are telling your guests how to dress, then others said "black tie" is ok, because it is either one or the other. So which is it? Is one rude but the other isn't? Just out of curiosity, what does etiquette say, since this is the E-board?
    Posted by cindyn9178[/QUOTE]

    Because black tie optional isn't a dress code. <strong>Black tie or the more formal white tie is an actual dress code</strong>. However, saying "you don't have to wear a tux" is unnecessary and is deemed rude because you are telling people to just wear <strong>normal</strong> wedding attire, thus you are assuming guests can't dress themselves.

    Black tie optional actually confuses me...because I would dress black tie so as not to be embarrassed since I would assume that the host is actually saying "please dress black tie, but we won't kick you out if you don't."

    If the host is actually saying just wear normal wedding attire, I would be pissed at them for making me assume I should wear black tie (H in a tux & me in a new long formal gown).

    ETA: <strong>and if I dressed black tie...the wedding better be a black tie (open top shelf bar, white glove service, live band, etc)</strong>

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  • cindyn9178cindyn9178 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:cd44962d-808d-4d2d-b897-b387a0cd70fc">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : <strong>Because black tie optional isn't a dress code. </strong>Black tie or the more formal white tie is an actual dress code . However, saying "you don't have to wear a tux" is unnecessary and is deemed rude because you are telling people to just wear normal wedding attire, thus you are assuming guests can't dress themselves. Black tie optional actually confuses me...because I would dress black tie so as not to be embarrassed since I would assume that the host is actually saying "please dress black tie, but we won't kick you out if you don't." If the host is actually saying just wear normal wedding attire, I would be pissed at them for making me assume I should wear black tie (H in a tux & me in a new long formal gown). ETA: and if I dressed black tie...the wedding better be a black tie (open top shelf bar, white glove service, live band, etc)
    Posted by redheadfsu[/QUOTE]

    Well sorry, but you are wrong. Black tie optional IS a dress code.
    <strong>From Emily Post: (<strong><a href="www.emilypost.com/social-life/formal-dinners-and-parties/860-dressing-for-the-occasion" target="_blank"><strong>CLICKY</strong></a></strong></strong><strong>)
    </strong><table border="1" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0"><tbody><tr><td width="82" valign="top"><p><em>Black </em></p><p><em>Tie Optional</em></p></td><td width="180" valign="top"><p>- Tuxedo</p><p>- Dark suit, white dress shirt, conservative tie</p><p>- Leather dress shoes and dark dress socks</p></td><td width="181" valign="top"><p>- Formal (floor-length) evening gown</p><p>- Dressy cocktail dress</p><p>- A “little black dress”</p><p>- Dressy separates</p></td></tr></tbody></table>
    Actually, if you dressed Black Tie, you don't have to wear a long gown, according to etiquette. So if you did, that would be your own fault.
    From Emily Post, Black tie for female guests:
    Formal (floor-length) evening gown <p>- Dressy cocktail dress</p><p>- Your dressiest “little black dress”

    And yes, it would be a little silly to request black tie and not have a " black tie wedding". But again, as I said above, most NJ weddings, or at least the ones I have attended (about 25) have provided all of those things you mentioned, and were not "black tie" dress.

    ETA: I apologize, it looks like my link isn't working correctly.
    Here is the link: <a href="http://www.emilypost.com/social-life/formal-dinners-and-parties/860-dressing-for-the-occasion">http://www.emilypost.com/social-life/formal-dinners-and-parties/860-dressing-for-the-occasion</a></p>
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:2958b3ca-7c53-4d84-8a32-d933c4e714a0">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : Well sorry, but you are wrong. Black tie optional IS a dress code. From Emily Post: ( CLICKY ) Black Tie Optional - Tuxedo - Dark suit, white dress shirt, conservative tie - Leather dress shoes and dark dress socks - Formal (floor-length) evening gown - Dressy cocktail dress - A “little black dress” - Dressy separates Actually, if you dressed Black Tie, you don't have to wear a long gown, according to etiquette. So if you did, that would be your own fault. From Emily Post, Black tie for female guests: Formal (floor-length) evening gown - Dressy cocktail dress - Your dressiest “little black dress” And yes, it would be a little silly to request black tie and not have a " black tie wedding". But again, as I said above, most NJ weddings, or at least the ones I have attended (about 25) have provided all of those things you mentioned, and were not "black tie" dress. ETA: I apologize, it looks like my link isn't working correctly. Here is the link: <a href="http://www.emilypost.com/weddings/a-guide-for-guests/846-guest-attire" rel="nofollow">http://www.emilypost.com/weddings/a-guide-for-guests/846-guest-attire</a>
    Posted by cindyn9178[/QUOTE]

    My circle doesn't do white tie anymore. It is outdated in my circle.

    If your circle does white tie, then yes a long gown isn't require for black tie.

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  • redheadfsuredheadfsu member
    2500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Does anyone (except maybe royals) do white tie anymore? I thought tails were no longer in style?

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  • cindyn9178cindyn9178 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:e0f649e6-0370-46fc-8140-36de422e14b5">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]CindyN: Martha Stewart is not an etiquette guru. She is a professional home-maker.  It is rude to tell your guests how to dress on an invitation, no matter where you live (I had my wedding in NJ with out of state guests, and everyone was dressed appropriately). If you read the posts on the NJ board you will notice 2 things: 1. People who say I don't mind or it is common, so it is not rude. But, that is just not true. People do rude things all the time. Lots of people talk with their mouth full, it doesn't make it polite or okay. Of course not everyone will be offended, but that doesn't make it not rude. I am not offended by foul language, but that doesn't make it polite. 2. The "it's your day people". These people think it is okay to make demands of guests to get the wedding "vibe" they are going for. They know it is rude to tell people how to dress, but are going to do it anyway because they have the silly idea that an underdressed person will ruin their perfectly elegant wedding. Well, they day stops being all about you when you decide to host other people. Once you have guests it is about them too, and avoiding insulting them should be top priority. Especially if you are insulting them about their clothes, which can't ruin your wedding. Jacky asked for etiquette advice and got it, but she didn't like hearing that "black tie optional" is not okay to put on invitations. She wanted validation, not advice, and she got it from the Jersey brides, who while well-meaning, are not following etiquette. We are etiquette sticklers here because we don't want brides to embarrass themselves in front of friends and family. 
    Posted by Liatris2010[/QUOTE]
    Ok, and who made you an etiquette guru? What are you basing this rudeness on? Your personal opinion or Emily Post? I have to say that Emily Post is pretty outdated for today's society. Martha Stewart is much more appropriate for today's society.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:77142c36-812d-452f-9387-03e2c173428f">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : My circle doesn't do white tie anymore. It is outdated in my circle. If your circle does white tie, then yes a long gown isn't require for black tie.
    Posted by redheadfsu[/QUOTE]

    I"m sorry, but where does it say that the dress for black tie is dependent on whether or not your circle does white tie??
  • Martha Stewart is not an etiquette guru.  She is a home maker with a RETAIL LINE.  Which means, she sells wedding shiit.  She sells a lot of it and brides think it's okay because it's by Martha.  A lot of her stuff she sells is against etiquette, but it makes her money. 
    [url=http://www.thebump.com/?utm_source=ticker&utm_medium=UBB&utm_campaign=tickers][img]http://global.thebump.com/tickers/tt13e8c6.aspx[/img][/url]
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:e0f649e6-0370-46fc-8140-36de422e14b5">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]  EDIT: Do I think if you put "Black Tie Optional" on your invite you are a bad person who is trying to insult guests? No of course not. But if someone asks if they should I am always going to say no, because it is not polite and I don't want you to risk offending some guests.
    Posted by Liatris2010[/QUOTE]
    But that is your opinion. You think it is rude, others don't think it is rude.
    I don't see any etiquette rule that says it is bad etiquette to do this. Do you have a link or something to share?

    People can be offended by ANYTHING. You cannot consume every detail of everything you do worrying about if one or two people MIGHT be offended by something you do concerning your wedding.

    Maybe this IS bad etiquette, but I haven't found any information to prove that so far, other than personal opinions.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:d01f93f9-7a35-4afb-82c1-a05c4e37428d">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]Martha Stewart is not an etiquette guru.  She is a home maker with a RETAIL LINE.  Which means, she sells wedding shiit.  She sells a lot of it and brides think it's okay because it's by Martha.  A lot of her stuff she sells is against etiquette, but it makes her money. 
    Posted by Habs2Hart[/QUOTE]

    Ok, and what would be her reason for saying that black tie optional printed on a wedding invitation is ok? How is that benefiting her in any way? That makes absolutely no sense. If Emily Post started selling wedding stuff ( I know this isn't possible), would that suddenly make all etiquette rules null and void?
  • Quoting Martha Stewart as an etiquette source is like using Wikipedia for a research paper.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:743315bc-3c9f-4140-9193-fb8d6d30aa66">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]<strong>It is rude to presume your guests are too dumb to dress themselves appropriately for a wedding. I don't need to be a guru or ask one to know that</strong>. It falls in the same category as putting "adults only" on invitations (everyone knows mail is for the people listed on the envelope, I don't need to be reminded). Martha Stewart gives tons on bad etiquette advice. Emily Post is OK, and not so outdated as her grand-daughter now writes her columns and books. Personally, I like Miss Manners. She is contemporary, like Martha Stewart, but gives more correct advice.
    Posted by Liatris2010[/QUOTE]

    Again, this is ENTIRELY based on your opinion. Many of us don't agree with that reasoning, so to US it is not rude.

    And it sounds to me like you are picking who's etiquette advice you want to listen to, based on what you find appropriate or agree with?

    You might think Martha's etiquette is bad, but again, that is based on your opinion.
  • redheadfsuredheadfsu member
    2500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    <div align="left">In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:cdee8c6d-47fc-4b3a-b178-7befe14e03fc">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : I"m sorry, but where does it say that the dress for black tie is dependent on whether or not your circle does white tie??
    Posted by cindyn9178[/QUOTE]

    Because if black tie is the most formal in my circle than I would wear a floor length gown. I was responding to your you don't have to wear a floor length gown.

    The guides you posted have such large ranges because different circles interpret it differently.

    But black tie optional isn't a dress code it is just formal attire.

    ETA: Does your circle do white tie? I really want to know if people still do white tie anymore.</div>

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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:359721a4-0597-4499-9b8c-520a7e5a10cd">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]Quoting Martha Stewart as an etiquette source is like using Wikipedia for a research paper.
    Posted by Meg1036[/QUOTE]

    Ok....I haven't seen you or anybody quote any etiquette sources. Everybody is just giving their opinions on this.

    Is everybody on this board an Etiquette expert? Or did I miss something?

    If you (collective you) are going to be telling people what to do because you say it is bad etiquette, then you (collective) should be providing information to back that up.

    Again, I am not saying that it is NOT bad etiquette to put "black tie optional" on a wedding invitation, but I have not seen any information provided by an Etiquette expert that says otherwise.
  • cindyn9178cindyn9178 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:043d5c5f-4928-4a2d-b8f6-11087ca09bb7">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : Because if black tie is the most formal in my circle than I would wear a floor length gown. I was responding to your you don't have to wear a floor length gown. The guides you posted have such large ranges because different circles interpret it differently. <strong>But black tie optional isn't a dress code it is just formal attire.</strong> ETA: Does your circle do white tie? I really want to know if people still do white tie anymore.
    Posted by redheadfsu[/QUOTE]

    <div align="left">Where are you getting this information?

    Etiquette is etiquette. Nobody should be interpreting it differently. Either you follow the rules as they are written, or you don't. There is no interpretation.</div>
  • Cindy, Crane's says you can't put Black Tie Optional, using the reasoning that anything is always "optional" so therefore it doesn't make any sense. But Crane's says lots of things that I don't think work in today's society. I love how the people responding to you are just noting Martha Stewart, not Emily Post, who at other times, this board is happy to quote as a source.

    But I personally have had the same experiences that you have had (in Philly and NY).

    Black tie doesn't mean the same thing as black tie optional.

    Black tie means wear a tux.

    Black tie optional means here's a great opportunity to wear your tux if you have one or want to rent one, otherwise a dark suit is fine.

    If nothing is indicated and it's your "standard" wedding (which like you, in my crowd, means the plated dinner, band, full bar, etc.), you'd wear a suit and it would be considered presumptuous to wear a tux when it wasn't indicated.
     
    It's very clear to me and to the people in my multiple friend and family circles. Probably half the weddings I attend are black tie optional, ncluding my own first wedding.

    The only problem I see with the OP is that it doesn't appear she's really having a black tie optional wedding. Her only goal appears to be to have people wear suits, not tuxes, which is different.
  • And Martha spent some time in jail for lying to investigators so I'm not gonna put too much stock in what she has to say.

    OP - I just wanted to throw out there that your BP can be in tuxes without your guests having to match that level of formality.  We had an outdoor summer evening wedding and told our guests (word of mouth) to dress to their comfort for the weather.  Some of the women wore sundresses and others, blouses and pants.  Most of the guys wore khakis and polos. A couple of the guys wore ties and long sleeved shirts but there were no suits (and I wouldn't have expected any).  My H, our dads, and his brother (GM) were in tuxes and it was fine. It didn't look odd that the guests weren't in tuxes or suits.  Just something to keep in mind.
    The Bee Hive Est. June 30, 2007
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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:ee094f8a-168b-4a33-b233-1c4adae98114">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]. The only problem I see with the OP is that it doesn't appear she's really having a black tie optional wedding. Her only goal appears to be to have people wear suits, not tuxes, which is different.
    Posted by tenofcups4me[/QUOTE]

    Yes.
    The Bee Hive Est. June 30, 2007
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    06.10.10

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  • cindyn9178cindyn9178 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:5609a86a-22a0-4f8b-a0f1-477e16deb863">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : Really? You think it is polite to assume your guests are too stupid to dress themselves appropriately? I understand that some people think putting dress code information on invites helps their guests because then they will know what everyone is wearing. But, the formality of the invitation indicates the formality of the dress. People can infer correctly and if they are unsure they can ask. It is totally unnecessary to put "wear suits and dresses" on a wedding invitation and doing so runs the risk of offending some people, so why do it?
    Posted by Liatris2010[/QUOTE]
    <div align="left">
    I don't interpret "black tie" written on an invitation as assuming guests are too stupid to dress themselves appropriately.

    I don't know what you are referring to by "the formality of the invitation" either.
    Every wedding invitation I've ever received has been what I would consider a "formal invitation". Professionally printed, using formal language, etc etc. And NONE of those weddings have been a FORMAL event with tuxedos/black tie required. If they had been, it would've said so ON the invitation.

    That being said, I'd NEVER wear anything less than a cocktail dress to a wedding. The only time I'd wear a floor length gown would be if the invitation specifically said "black tie".

    What exactly does a less formal invitation look like? So next time, I know I can wear more casual clothes.</div>
  • redheadfsuredheadfsu member
    2500 Comments
    edited December 2011

    From what I remember Emily Post thought black tie optional was rude.

    But since her children (I think?) took over I don't know if that info is on the website anymore.

    Does anyone have an Emily Post book handy? (I'm at work)

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  • cindyn9178cindyn9178 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:ee094f8a-168b-4a33-b233-1c4adae98114">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]Cindy, Crane's says you can't put Black Tie Optional, using the reasoning that anything is always "optional" so therefore it doesn't make any sense. But Crane's says lots of things that I don't think work in today's society. I love how the people responding to you are just noting Martha Stewart, not Emily Post, who at other times, this board is happy to quote as a source. But I personally have had the same experiences that you have had (in Philly and NY). Black tie doesn't mean the same thing as black tie optional. Black tie means wear a tux. Black tie optional means here's a great opportunity to wear your tux if you have one or want to rent one, otherwise a dark suit is fine. If nothing is indicated and it's your "standard" wedding (which like you, in my crowd, means the plated dinner, band, full bar, etc.), you'd wear a suit and it would be considered presumptuous to wear a tux when it wasn't indicated.   It's very clear to me and to the people in my multiple friend and family circles. Probably half the weddings I attend are black tie optional, ncluding my own first wedding. The only problem I see with the OP is that it doesn't appear she's really having a black tie optional wedding. Her only goal appears to be to have people wear suits, not tuxes, which is different.
    Posted by tenofcups4me[/QUOTE]
    <div align="left">I completely agree with everything you said, and I know we aren't the only people who feel this way. I agree about the OP.. and as we explained to her on our local board, putting black tie optional probably won't influence the people she is concerned about not dressing appropriately anyway.

    Someone above mentioned that the guests don't have to wear tuxes just because the bridal party is. I think that is a given. Usually - or again - at least in my circle, the bridal party always wears tuxedos, whether it is a black tie wedding or not. The male guests just wear suits.</div>
  • I don't, but Cindy posted this link about midway through the thread that describes what the various dress codes mean from Emily Post:

    Here is the link: http://www.emilypost.com/social-life/formal-dinners-and-parties/860-dressing-for-the-occasion
  • redheadfsuredheadfsu member
    2500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    <div align="left">In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:ddc37465-7c50-4c5e-964e-e7668cdd70bc">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]I don't, but Cindy posted this link about midway through the thread that describes what the various dress codes mean from Emily Post: Here is the link: <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.emilypost.com/social-life/formal-dinners-and-parties/860-dressing-for-the-occasion">http://www.emilypost.com/social-life/formal-dinners-and-parties/860-dressing-for-the-occasion</a>
    Posted by tenofcups4me[/QUOTE]

    But does her website say anything about putting it on the invite? As that is the question at hand.</div>

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  • I would consider Miss Manners Guide to a Suprisingly Dignified Wedding to be an authoratative source.  No, I do not have a copy with me here at work.
  • redheadfsuredheadfsu member
    2500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    <div align="left">In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:6db4f9e6-6a57-4adb-8b64-da166c66ac3f">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : I completely agree with everything you said, and I know we aren't the only people who feel this way. I agree about the OP.. and as we explained to her on our local board, putting black tie optional probably won't influence the people she is concerned about not dressing appropriately anyway. Someone above mentioned that the guests don't have to wear tuxes just because the bridal party is. I think that is a given. Usually - or again - at least in my circle, the bridal party always wears tuxedos, whether it is a black tie wedding or not. The male guests just wear suits.
    Posted by cindyn9178[/QUOTE]

    Right. A normal wedding people wear suits/at least cocktail attire. OP, wants people to wear suits. So as long as OP's invites are formal/normal, then guests will wear normal attire.

    Putting black tie optional on an invite...I would wear black tie so as not be the most under dressed person there. If I was a guest at OP's normal wedding where normal attire is ok...I would be very very out of place.</div>

    Planning Bio
    Married 9/15/11

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    *This is Not Legal Advice*
  • cindyn9178cindyn9178 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:641812fb-c87d-4644-932b-a6fdc26d74b6">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : Cindy, you are exactly correct here. <strong>You would put black or white tie on an invitation because even the most formal (engraved) invitation may not be black tie (top shelf open bar, white glove service of multi-course plated dinner, live band, etc.).</strong> If you got a printed invitation with a palm tree on it inviting you to a beach wedding at 3 pm you would dress differently then you have for the other weddings you've been to right? Because the invitation is less formal.
    Posted by Liatris2010[/QUOTE]
    <div align="left">Ok, and this is where the confusion/disagreement is.

    All of the weddings I've ever attended, and I believe the "typical" New Jersey wedding includes a top shelf open bar, white glove service, multi course plated dinner, live band, or a combination of those things.
    Typically, those weddings are not considered "the most formal of weddings". They are considered the "norm" and "typical". A guest would expect to wear a suit or cocktail dress to a wedding of that caliber.

    So therefore, the formality of the invitation for that type of wedding would not dictate that it was MORE formal than any other typical wedding as you originally said. It would need to be written on the invitation.
    And to answer your question, if I received an invitation that seemed more casual in my opinion, I still wouldn't assume that I could dress more casual unless I asked someone. So in that situation, putting "casual attire" on the invitation would be helpful and would clear up any question I might have.

    Overall, I think saying "black tie optional" is a great way of giving people the opportunity to wear a gown or tuxedo if they want to, without requiring it for those who don't want to. It is the furthest thing from rude in my opinion.</div>
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:6db4f9e6-6a57-4adb-8b64-da166c66ac3f">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : I completely agree with everything you said, and I know we aren't the only people who feel this way. I agree about the OP.. and as we explained to her on our local board, putting black tie optional probably won't influence the people she is concerned about not dressing appropriately anyway. <strong>Someone above mentioned that the guests don't have to wear tuxes just because the bridal party is. I think that is a given. </strong>Usually - or again - at least in my circle, the bridal party always wears tuxedos, whether it is a black tie wedding or not. The male guests just wear suits.
    Posted by cindyn9178[/QUOTE]


    You and I know that but I don't think OP does.  Her wording made it sound like just because the WP was going to wear tuxes, all the male guests should be in a minimum of suits and that's not always the case.  We went with tuxes because that's what we wanted - it had nothing to do with how we wanted our guests to dress.
    The Bee Hive Est. June 30, 2007
    "So I sing a song of love, Julia"
    06.10.10

    BFAR:We Defined Our Own Success!
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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:c60dcace-bdab-4e5c-a318-db255e6336b2">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : You and I know that but I don't think OP does.  Her wording made it sound like just because the WP was going to wear tuxes, all the male guests should be in a minimum of suits and that's not always the case.  We went with tuxes because that's what we wanted - it had nothing to do with how we wanted our guests to dress.
    Posted by Mrs.B6302007[/QUOTE]

    All male guests should be in a minimum of a suit at a wedding, unless it is in a backyard or on the beach.
  • redheadfsuredheadfsu member
    2500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    <div align="left">In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_black-tie-optional-2?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:bccd5533-37bd-4ff9-842f-6beb78fc4666Post:4fd7b4a8-88cb-401a-ba53-91607d5353e3">Re: Black tie optional</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Black tie optional : Ok, and this is where the confusion/disagreement is. All of the weddings I've ever attended, and I believe the "typical" New Jersey wedding includes a top shelf open bar, white glove service, multi course plated dinner, live band, or a combination of those things. Typically, those weddings are not considered "the most formal of weddings". They are considered the "norm" and "typical". A guest would expect to wear a suit or cocktail dress to a wedding of that caliber. So therefore, the formality of the invitation for that type of wedding would not dictate that it was MORE formal than any other typical wedding as you originally said. It would need to be written on the invitation. And to answer your question, if I received an invitation that seemed more casual in my opinion, I still wouldn't assume that I could dress more casual unless I asked someone. So in that situation, putting "casual attire" on the invitation would be helpful and would clear up any question I might have. Overall, I think saying "black tie optional" is a great way of giving people the opportunity to wear a gown or tuxedo if they want to, without requiring it for those who don't want to. It is the furthest thing from rude in my opinion.
    Posted by cindyn9178[/QUOTE]

    But if OP's wedding just has a DJ, a buffet, cash bar (I'm just giving an example as I don't know what OP is doing) and everyone else is wearing just a normal suit/cocktail dress from the mall. When my husband and I stroll in, in a tux & long gown we would be out of place.
    </div>

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    Married 9/15/11

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