Let’s Find This Reader a (Formal) Wedding Guest Dress!

wedding flowers

We recently heard from a reader, Jodi, who’s looking for a dress for a wedding:

“After two years without special events, I finally get to attend one: my dad’s wedding! But I’m not sure what to wear. My family likes to dress up; if someone even says ‘business casual,’ it means gowns. Help!”

I totally get the stress this, Jodi! Finding a wedding guest outfit can be tough. If you’d rather not shop, consider asking a friend who is the same size if she has something you can borrow? And if you’re on a budget, there are a ton of beautiful dresses on Rent the Runway and Poshmark.

But if you are in a shopping mood, here are seven styles we love…

The Classic Gown: When I hear the words “formal wear,” I think of two elements: floor skimming hemlines and luxurious fabrics. This stunner has both; plus, it comes in a bunch of colors, including pale blue and forest green.

The Bright Dress: I am OBSESSED with this vibrant midi! It’s the “perfect combination of sexy and cute” (name that movie). Wear it with strappy heels and pearls to channel some major Jackie O. energy.

The Little Black Dress: I’ve never worn black to a wedding, but whenever I see someone else looking all mysterious and sexy in a LBD, I let out a wistful sigh. This one features a plunging neckline and reminds me of the cocktail dresses on Mad Men. Bonus: If you want to shop second-hand, you can find this style on Postmark.

The Breastfeeding-Friendly Dress: Whether you’re nursing or bottle-feeding, keeping a baby content at a wedding is a physical feat, so prioritize your comfort. This wrap maxi is lightweight, elegant, and easy to move in. Dress it up with sparkly earrings, if you’d like.

The Floral Dress: How pretty is this floral number? The combination of spaghetti straps, soft pinks and deep reds, and a high slit equals an outfit that is equally romantic and sultry. And here is another lovely floral.

The Statement Dress: If, like me, you like to dress boldly and own a room, wear a piece with exaggerated details or bright colors. The oversized bow on this maxi dress is an attention grabber (more colors here), and a fire hydrant red dress is a dreamy alternate.

The Fancy Jumpsuit: Maybe gowns aren’t your thing — then go for a jumpsuit! Drapey fabric and sleek silhouettes elevate the look from casual to formal. Wouldn’t this halter jumpsuit look great with red lipstick?

The Money No Object Dress: If you want to splurge, please wear this dress! The high leg slit! The jewel-tone color! The way the fabric drapes oh-so-gracefully! It’s timeless, so you could wear it to future events. I’d pair it with these.

Thoughts? What recommendations would you share? If you’re going to a wedding this year, what are you wearing?!

P.S. Date night ideas and “my favorite part of our wedding.”

(Photo by Leah Flores/Stocksy.)

Note: If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission, at no cost to you. We recommend only products we genuinely like. Thank you so much.

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