(Closed) Black tie in the afternoon?

posted 9 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
Member
2641 posts
Sugar bee

My thought is her reception is kind of during a gray area.  A 5 pm reception sounds more eveningish to me, than afternoon.  It will probably last 5-6 hours.  That brings you well into the evening.  Since there is time between ceremony and reception, could you have a slightly less formal outfit for the church?

I can understand questioning a little. After all, you don’t want your husband to be the only one dressed like a groomsman.  You said that others wouldn’t be following this black tie dress code.  So if that is true, I would think it would be OK to wear the typical suit, nice dress thing.  Maybe she’s used to pretty casual wedding receptions. And put black tie on there in an atempt to get the guests to kick it up a little.  If worse comes to worse, I wouldn’t hesitate to ask the bride.  Say something like, "I’m not used to black tie reception, so I thought I’d double check with you.  I’d hate to come dressed inappropriately."

Post # 4
Member
2030 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

Our wedding ceremony was at 2:30 in the afternoon (reception at 6) and we requested guests wear black tie. The majority of women did wear long gowns, although a few wore cocktail dresses and looked perfectly fine. Most men wore a black suit. A few went all out and wore tuxedos.

Post # 5
Member
178 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

Black tie means a tuxedo for the men and an evening gown, or cocktail dress for the ladies.

I’ve read that "black tie optinal" is really a misnomer, as if it were optional, it means one of the accepted attire choices is a tuxedo, but everything else is acceptable as well.

I think most people look past the "literalness" of black tie optional, and know that either a tux or a dark suit is appropriate for women.

Since your friend did not specify the "optional" part I’d take her at her word that she wants her guests dressed up. If you have a problem with a full-length dress that early in the day (trust me, I would too) I’d look for a dressy cocktail dress.

Post # 6
Member
178 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

either a tux or a dark suit is appropriate for *men*. Erm.

Or women. However you roll really. It is afterall, 2009.

😉

Post # 8
Member
2641 posts
Sugar bee

Ugg.  I hope it works out for you.  That is the problem with insisting on black tie.  If they really want you to wear a tux, it becomes inconvenient and expensive.  Most guys have a suit they can just wear.  But having to get a tux…  Good luck.

Post # 10
Member
813 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

Wow! Good thing you asked her! I guess she will be spreading the word to everyone that she REALLY means black tie (with tuxes!)… I am sure there will be a few that don’t get tuxes or gowns, but at least you have a heads up as to what is expected and what most will be wearing! 

Post # 11
Member
29 posts
Newbee

that’s crazy! even in NYC people wear cocktail dresses to black tie weddings. oh well at least you get to go shopping!

Post # 12
Member
2030 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

Hi Rebecca, glad to help! I LOVE formal affairs and I wanted ours to be as formal as possible, just because I think it looks so great. In an ideal world, it would have been awesome if every man had worn a tux (I was dreaming of awesome old school photos with our stylish guys!), but I knew going in that some of our guests would not (due to budget or comfort). We actually got a bunch of guests who were angry that we asked for formal attire, so when a couple of guys did wear their tuxes I thought they looked great and it made me really happy. On the other hand, I was not upset or offended at all that most guys wore dark suits.

So – if your guy does wear a tux, I bet it will really please the hosts. But if he just wears a dark suit, he’ll probably blend in just fine and won’t necessarily offend anyone.

Post # 13
Member
1042 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

snmcdowell, I am right there with you! I would love for every single attendee to my wedding to wear a tux and a full gown. However, I’m aware that’s probably asking a lot and is not realistic, so I’d be fine with them wearing a nice cocktail dress or a dark suit.

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