Wedding Etiquette Forum

Guest wedding attire question

I'm hoping someone can help me determine the dress code for a wedding I've been invited to.  The invitation says "formal adult reception", but the invitation looks casual and the ceremony is at 1:30 with the reception at 3:00.  

Do you think this warrants "formal" attire, or does the style of the invitation combined with the time of the ceremony make it sound more like a "semi-formal" type affair?




Re: Guest wedding attire question

  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    I would do semi-formal.  Maybe a LBD.  LBD are pretty safe for most dress codes







    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. 
  • I want to squish your ginger kitty.

    Um...I would probably go with semi formal.  If you're asking if you should do like black tie, or like a sundress....I'd go in between, I think.  Like a knee length cocktail dress?  I think a lot of people don't really know what "formal" means.

    image
    Everything the light touches is my kingdom.
  • Yikes... just wow. I don't have a good answer for you, because that is just bizarre! Except that I think I would probably dress in a way that I felt was appropriate for an afternoon wedding. No matter what craziness the invite says!
    photo JamieMasonWedding-8992-S.jpg
  • I'm another vote for semi formal. The LBD is a pretty good idea. It might not win you any creativity points, but it never hurts to play it safe. 
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:103b9393-b4bb-463e-b436-2c6a0890b2c1">Re: Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]Yikes... just wow. I don't have a good answer for you, because that is just bizarre! Except that I think I would probably dress in a way that I felt was appropriate for an afternoon wedding. No matter what craziness the invite says!
    Posted by FutureMrsMDJahnke[/QUOTE]

    <div>You're very enthusiastic.</div><div>
    </div><div>OP, just wear something like a LDB. It doesn't need to be fancy, but it needs to be a step above what you'd wear to a backyard party.</div>
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:92c5ec39-780a-4923-b618-159fc985730c">Re: Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]I want to squish your ginger kitty. Um...I would probably go with semi formal.  If you're asking if you should do like black tie, or like a sundress....I'd go in between, I think.  Like a knee length cocktail dress?  I think a lot of people don't really know what "formal" means.
    Posted by J&K10910[/QUOTE]

    <div>Your kitty looks pretty squishable, too. :)  I was kindof between your knee-length dress idea and a LBD, but then I second-guessed myself and started thinking I should go shopping for something more black-tie-event-worthy.  But I'd rather not, if the consensus is it's not really called for.</div>
  • No, definitely not something black tie worthy.  I would eat my own toenail if this wedding ended up being black tie--that's how sure I am.

    image
    Everything the light touches is my kingdom.
  • HandBananaHandBanana member
    Seventh Anniversary 500 Comments
    edited July 2012
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:a6af77de-dff5-4394-94d3-2eda5d5752c6">Re:Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'd be tempted to wear assless chaps with an invite like that, not gonna lie. However, I agree that a LBD is safe.
    Posted by StageManager14[/QUOTE]

    I was going to suggest Lil Kim a la MTV Music awards. since it is adult.

    I think a cocktail dress is safe.  LBD is even better. What time is the ceremony and reception?

    ETA: I can read good.  I would think you are fine with a cocktail dress or LBD. Definitely not very formal with a reception starting at 3pm. 
    Image and video hosting by TinyPic
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:7b49fb81-c5b4-4faf-812e-999899ea3b5c">Re: Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Guest wedding attire question : You're very enthusiastic.
    Posted by specialk84[/QUOTE]

    Always!

    Really I am just really bored and procrastinating housework, and I love exclamation points. !
    photo JamieMasonWedding-8992-S.jpg
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:91b56e0b-81c0-4db5-96eb-671cfb3b75b1">Re: Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]No, definitely not something black tie worthy.  I would eat my own toenail if this wedding ended up being black tie--that's how sure I am.
    Posted by J&K10910[/QUOTE]

    <div>If it ends up being black tie, I'm totally holding you to that.  ;)</div>
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:18f42533-5821-4992-82a1-3df296e8d9a1">Re: Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Guest wedding attire question : If it ends up being black tie, I'm totally holding you to that.  ;)
    Posted by janice9821[/QUOTE]

    10-4, rubber ducky!

    Seriously though, I wouldn't be surprised if you were a bit overdressed in a knee length cocktail dress or a LBD.  But I'd rather be a bit overdressed than underdressed.

    image
    Everything the light touches is my kingdom.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:97c89782-ad48-4415-a95a-6dd7f86f6a8f">Re:Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re:Guest wedding attire question : I was going to suggest Lil Kim a la MTV Music awards. since it is adult. I think a cocktail dress is safe.  LBD is even better. What time is the ceremony and reception? ETA: I can read good.  I would think you are fine with a cocktail dress or LBD. Definitely not very formal with a reception starting at 3pm. 
    Posted by HandBanana[/QUOTE]

    <div>I don't think the Lil Kim look or the assless chaps will flatter my figure, so I guess I'd better just stick with the LBD or the cocktail dress.  </div>
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:91b56e0b-81c0-4db5-96eb-671cfb3b75b1">Re: Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]No, definitely not something black tie worthy.  I would eat my own toenail if this wedding ended up being black tie--that's how sure I am.
    Posted by J&K10910[/QUOTE]



    Right? All I can think of is these brides that come on here complaining that aunt Jane is going to show up in jeans with her uninvited children so she will be putting formal adult reception only to fix that.
    image
  • Well, I'm glad to hear I'm not crazy in thinking that this probably isn't a true "formal" event.  Thanks, all!
  • lauraanne9lauraanne9 member
    100 Comments
    edited July 2012
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:3c0b6122-17ce-48ef-83dd-5cd1a41058b0">Re: Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Guest wedding attire question : Right? All I can think of is these brides that come on here complaining <strong>that aunt Jane is going to show up in jeans with her uninvited children so she will be putting formal adult reception only to fix that.</strong>
    Posted by whitsy[/QUOTE]

    <div>
    </div><div>This is exactly what I thought.  My fiance is from a culture that, if it is a "family" event, everyone just comes whether they are invited or not (don't get me started) and I was told to tell people it was "formal" to discourage it.  Unbeknownst to me until after, my fiance actually told his sister the wedding is "formal" because it would make her understand that people needed to dress nicely and not bring uninvited guests with them.</div><div>
    </div><div>So, when I read that it seemed like the advice I keep getting...say it is formal and all is solved.  And so eeryone knows, I ignored this advice and did NOT write "formal" anywhere on the invitation.  Not like I would anyway.  ;)</div><div>
    </div><div>So, I think the LBD is a good call.  And if you are worried, I would bring 2 sets of jewelry with me and dress according to the people I see going in.  LBD with pearls or something similar, formal.  LBD with larger pieces of jewelry, done right, can be less formal.  Shoes can also change a LBD to more and less formal.</div>
    Anniversary
  • 3:00 reception and an LBD? I have a hard time going out in a black dress in the daylight unless I'm going to a funeral. And I always thought black to a wedding was frowned upon, like you were mourning the death of your friend's singledom. I'd go with semiformal. Unless LBD refers more broadly to "cocktail of other colors."
    image
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:c90a8ec5-c95d-486c-b761-0f68d10b4a86">Re:Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]3:00 reception and an LBD? I have a hard time going out in a black dress in the daylight unless I'm going to a funeral. And I always thought black to a wedding was frowned upon, like you were mourning the death of your friend's singledom. I'd go with semiformal. Unless LBD refers more broadly to "cocktail of other colors."
    Posted by runpipparun[/QUOTE]

    I avoid wearing black to weddings for the same reasons.  I think it is a little different in a situation where "formal" was put on the invite but I don't know how you could have anything "formal" starting before 6/5.
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  • So on an invite they pretty much said "your kids aren't invited" and "we're going to tell you what to wear because we don't trust your judgement"... with that I'd say wear whatever you want.
    Add in that it looks like wedding happens at a time where they might not even serve a meal and the invitations are informal, I don't forsee your being underdressed at this wedding.

    Agreed. A little dress you can dress up or down with shoes/jewelry is a good way to go. Do NOT get a long dress.
  • I second the LBD or other similar dress idea.  Mixed attire signals are a pin in the butt. 
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_guest-wedding-attire-question?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:28a3d36b-4780-440e-8a87-6ae91344d042Post:3c0b6122-17ce-48ef-83dd-5cd1a41058b0">Re: Guest wedding attire question</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Guest wedding attire question : Right? All I can think of is these brides that come on here complaining that aunt Jane is going to show up in jeans with her uninvited children so she will be putting formal adult reception only to fix that.
    Posted by whitsy[/QUOTE]
    ^this.  I'd put my money on the fact that this it specifically geared towards a handful of family members who put on their "good" acid washed jeans and bring any blood relation looking for a free meal.<div>
    </div><div>Cocktail dress, LBD, anything like that and you'll be fine.</div>
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