The 411 On Formal Wedding Guest Attire & How To Style It

Receiving a wedding guest invitation with a dress code usually means we run straight to our group chat, frantically asking what everyone is wearing. Wedding guest attire can range from floor-sweeping black tie gowns to knee-length cocktail dresses. Then there are things to consider like the ambiance of the venue, whether it’s outdoors or in, and the time of year. If the invite says formal wedding attire, however, you’re in luck. It may seem deceptively hard at first, but this popular style is actually quite flexible. Think of “formal” as the perfect medium between black tie and cocktail ensembles. You can wear a variety of lengths and silhouettes and still fall squarely within the guidelines. Still not sure what to wear? Leave your worries with us, as we’ve picked out only the best formal wedding guest attire for you.

One simple rule you can abide by when searching for the best formal wedding guest attire is that your outfit should be not so much a black tie red carpet gown but more dressy than a cocktail look. Wedding guest styles such as midi and maxi dresses and gowns in colorful hues and delicate details are acceptable, as are elevated separates like three-piece pantsuits and silky modern tailored sets. Chic jumpsuits are another jazzy option, too, as you can be comfortable and choose fun prints or one-pieces with dramatic embellishments. Feel free to dress outside of the box and pick a wedding guest ‘fit that you feel the best in and also respects the couple’s wishes with these picks ahead.

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Best Formal Wedding Guest Dress

Leave your stand-by LBD behind and opt for stylish midi and maxi dresses. The ones we picked out are all in elevated shades with eye-catching necklines or subtle details like pleats or ruffles.

Shop Lulus

Lulus How Much I Care Dark Green Off-The-Shoulder Midi Dress, $, available at LulusShop Reformation

Reformation Casette Silk Dress, $, available at ReformationShop Dress The Population At Nordstrom

Dress The Population Tiffany One-Shoulder Midi Dress, $, available at NordstromShop & Other Stories

& Other Stories V-Neck Wrap Dress, $, available at & Other StoriesShop Abercrombie & Fitch

Abercrombie & Fitch Satin Pleated Cutout Maxi Dress, $, available at Abercrombie & Fitch

Best Formal Wedding Guest Gowns

If you’re a relative or close friend of the couple, stand out from the rest of the crowd in a dressier number that says it all. A luxe gown or elegant floor-length silhouette can still fall in the formal dress code without upstaging the wedding party.

Shop Norma Kamali At Revolve

Norma Kamali X REVOLVE Halter Sweetheart Side Drape Gown, $, available at RevolveShop Alice + Olivia At Saks Fifth Avenue

Alice + Olivia Arista Lamé Halterneck Gown, $, available at Saks Fifth AvenueShop Birdy Grey

Birdy Grey Kira Dress, $, available at Birdy Grey

Best Formal Wedding Guest Jumpsuit

Jump, twirl, and spin all night long in a jumpsuit embellished with sequins or with lace details for a funky spin on a formal wedding guest look.

Shop By Anthropologie At Anthropologie

By Anthropologie Lace Mix Jumpsuit, $, available at AnthropologieShop Eloquii

Eloquii Sequin Cargo Jumpsuit, $, available at EloquiiShop Free People

Free People Jade Jumpsuit, $, available at Free People

Best Formal Wedding Guest Pantsuit

Keep it cool and professional in formal wedding guest attire of a crisp pantsuit. It’s a step up from your office two-piece, as we’ve chosen funky styles with floral appliques and sophisticated belted vests.

Shop Banana Republic

Banana Republic Lena Relaxed Linen-Blend Vest, $, available at Banana Republic

Banana Republic Lena Wide-Leg Linen-Blend Pant, $, available at Banana RepublicShop ASOS Luxe Curve At ASOS

ASOS LUXE Curve 3D Flower Crop Blazer In Stone, $, available at ASOS

ASOS LUXE Curve 3D Flower High Waist Wide Leg Pants In Stone, $, available at ASOSShop J.Crew

J.Crew Willa Blazer In City Crepe, $, available at J.Crew

J.Crew Wide-Leg Essential Pant In City Crepe, $, available at J.CrewShop Zara

Zara Printed Cuff Blazer, $, available at Zara

Zara Straight Leg Pants, $, available at Zara

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