Tip Tuesday: Cracking the Wedding Dress Code (Fall Edition)

Don't let the size of your wedding dictate your dress code! As many couples opt for smaller, intimate gatherings of close friends and immediate families, you may feel pressure for your whole event to reflect a smaller, more casual vibe. At the end of the day this is your wedding, so make it completely your own!

Regardless of what you decide, you'll want to include your dress code on your invitations or wedding website. Rather than thinking about a dress code as restrictive, consider it a way to help guide your guests so they will be able to dress for your theme and feel comfortable. Additionally, indicating the dress code on your invitations will help you field questions from confused guests and guide them in the right direction.


Today I'm sharing some cool weather inspiration for the most common dress codes. Hopefully these will help guide you as you determine the wedding vibe that most fits your style!


  • White Tie: This style wedding is more rare these days, but if you're invited to a white tie wedding, expect to bring your A-Game. White tie is the most formal of all dress codes, so guests can expect to wear a glamorous ballgown, heals, and elegant accessories. Bring a chic wrap to tie the look together and make sure you don't get cold.

  • Black Tie: After White Tie, this wedding dress code is the next most formal. Plan to dress to the nines in your classiest cocktail dress or evening gown.

  • Formal Attire/Black Tie Optional: Wedding invitations calling for formal attire or black-tie optional indicate that though tuxedos aren't required, the event is still very formal. A long evening dress or formal cocktail dress would be most appropriate.

  • Cocktail Attire: This wedding dress code is typically the most popular. This dress code still indicates a semi-formal affair, and ladies can expect to wear a dress of any length, or even a pretty jumpsuit. To make this more appropriate opt for a look with long sleeves.

  • Semi-Formal/Dressy Casual: This dress code can include a variety of options that fall between formal and casual. A cocktail dress or a dressy skirt and long sleeve top would be appropriate.

  • Casual/Day Time: An invitation that indicates that the dress code is casual, typically means anything goes—but you may want to skip out on jeans or shorts. Think "business casual" with a wedding twist, such as a simple dress or a skirt or slacks with a nice blouse.

  • Create your own: Don't let yourself feel limited by these traditional dress codes. Feel free to make up your own! Pinterest has a lot of great theme ideas, but you can also incorporate your venue to make it feel more personal, such as “Texas Cocktail" or "Backyard Barbecue." If you choose to go this route, it would be helpful to add a little description so you're sure that guests will interpret what to wear correctly. Don’t forget to clarify the terrain, too!


Shop the looks!

Scroll through for sample looks I put together for each dress code with pieces from one of my favorite retailers, Revolve:

If you're still holding on to warm weather, check out looks from the original post HERE.


Disclaimer: No items featured in this post are a part of a paid sponsorship. However, affiliate links are included in this post through my LIKEtoKNOW.it. It means so much to me when you love the looks I share, and sincerely appreciate when you use my links! xoxo


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