You know not to wear white (at least, you should). But that's not the only clothing option firmly on the "don't" list when it comes to dressing for a wedding. So when you're staring at the closet, trying to figure out something appropriate to wear, steer clear of these options. And if you can't, well, consider it an excuse to go shopping (or even Rent the Runway).
1. Solid White Dresses. Duh.
Let's just get this one out of the way. You know not to wear white to a wedding. Ever. Even if you think your friendship can handle it, or that the bride really won't care because she's super ~chill~. It's a respect thing. As old or as silly as the tradition may be, there are a lot of brides who feel it's the one color you really shouldn't step on. So don't be the person who does.
2. A White Dress With Colored Patterns
This goes back to the whole "don't wear white" note above. Even if it has other colors in it, if the dress is mostly white, save it for a fancy date night with your dude.
3. Anything That Makes You Look Dressier Than the Bride
If you know the wedding is super casual, or that she'll be wearing a light, flowy dress (like at a beach wedding), don't show up in a ball gown. Talk to her ahead of time - or better yet, ask the bridesmaids - if you need help figuring out how much you should tone down your own dress.
4. Sky-High Heels
This is just a practicality thing. You don't need to be the girl who's wearing heels she can't walk in, especially as you try to stumble across cobblestone, grass, or sand and end up looking like Bambi on brand-new legs. Plus, I can guarantee you're going to kick them off and hit the dance floor barefoot. Which, if you think about it, is kind of gross and can get sticky if there's alcohol flying. Find a pair of heels you can walk around in comfortably, and that you can keep on while you shake your ass. (I promise, they really do exist.)
5. Flip Flops
I know, I know, it sounds like I'm being awfully picky about footwear. But flip flops don't belong at weddings, either. Now, this isn't me saying you have to wear a heel (though wedges can be a comfy compromise). Just don't wear shoes that are made out of plastic or foam. Sandals? Sure. Flats? Go for it. As long as they look like they don't belong at a beach or at your '90s throwback party, I'm good.
Even if you know the groomsmen are going to be wearing jeans with a button-down and vest, that doesn't mean you have permission to do so as well. Of course, a dress code like that means it'll be a more chill wedding, but wear some damn khakis or suit pants. Because at the end of the day, this isn't a frat party - it's a wedding.
I don't care if your name is Juicy Motherf*ckin' Couture - any type of loungewear is strictly forbidden at a wedding. And, yes, that includes throwing on a sweatshirt at the end of the night because you're cold. Suck it up, or bring a real jacket, sweater, or wrap. Even stealing your date's jacket is better (though I can't say he'll be very happy).
8. Animal Print
Just say no to the leopard, zebra, and giraffe print. (Seriously, I've seen it.) I'm not saying you need to dress as Plain Jane, but in-your-face animal prints are likely to draw attention to you, meaning you're taking attention away from the bride.
9. Dress Shirts With Short Sleeves
This is not a good look, guys. Wear a proper long-sleeved shirt. If you get too hot, you can roll them up (a look that's actually sexy AF when done well).
It hurts my eyes, the photographer's eyes, probably even your date's eyes. And guess what? When the lights go out and the dance floor is lit, nobody is going to notice the bride having the best time. They'll be too busy staring at you and the dress that should've stayed at your senior prom.
11. Your Own Wedding Dress
You'd think that I wouldn't have to state this one, but apparently it's necessary. (Pause for a moment as I violently slam my forehead against my palm.) If you're going to listen to only one of these rules, let it be this one: When attending a wedding that is not your own, do not wear your wedding dress. It kind of defeats the whole purpose of the bride wearing one. Oy.
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