Black tie optional–what would you wear? NWR

posted 2 years ago in The Lounge
  • poll: Gown vs. Cocktail Dress
    Go with the gown! : (16 votes)
    52 %
    Cocktail dress for sure. : (13 votes)
    42 %
    Husband should change his look and go with the gown. : (2 votes)
    6 %
  • Post # 2
    Member
    11 posts
    Newbee

    jenm2be:  I think either is totally fine. I might opt for a long dress, but mostly because I love getting the chance to wear a long one.

    I had this issue recently with a “black tie optional” wedding we attended. My husband wore a suit, and I wore a long dress. There were plenty of other people in long dresses – barely anyone in tuxedos. And the bridemaids were in short dresses – which I really thought defeated the purpose of a black tie optional wedding, but whatever…. 

    Post # 3
    Member
    1262 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: February 2015 - Mount Hermon

    Either. The length of a dress dictates the formality of a dress much less than it used to.

    Post # 4
    Member
    5002 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: June 2014

    jenm2be:  You can wear a long dress without it being a “gown”. I wouldnt wear a full on ballgown – but I have worn a dress that looks like a cocktail dress, just goes all the way to the floor. Overall though, I think that either option would be fine. 

    Post # 5
    Member
    1478 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: July 2016

    I personally don’t own any long formal gowns, and don’t have the extra money to buy one, so I’d go with a cocktail dress.  I guess if money was no issue, I might buy one.  I also think I look better in knee length, rather than floor length. 

    Post # 6
    Member
    8009 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: September 2015

    If he’s wearing a suit id go for the cocktail dress.

    Post # 7
    Member
    481 posts
    Helper bee

    jenm2be:  I’d wear an evening gown, but that’s because I have a dozen of them (I buy them cheap at thrift stores and tailor them) and never have any place to wear them!

    Post # 8
    Member
    716 posts
    Busy bee

    If someone bothers to write “black tie optinional”, I would interpret this as a request to dress up (long gown).  Now, that being said, if the person/event is important to me, I will usually honor the request and wear a long gown.  If the person/event aren’t as important to me and I prioritize being more comfortable/casual, I will wear a cocktail dress.  In this case, for your husband’s fraternity, I would go cocktail dress.  If it was my best friends wedding, in contrast, I would honor her wishes and go long gown.

    Post # 10
    Member
    3344 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: April 2013 - Rhode Island

    Black tie optional usually means that the host would prefer you to wear black tie but isn’t making it mandatory (as in, they won’t throw you out because your husband isn’t wearing a tux and you’re not wearing a floor-length gown).  I personally love getting dressed up and would relish the opportunity to wear a pretty floor-length gown!  I’d suggest that your husband wears a black suit or tux.  He may stick out a little in the grey.  But then again, it is optional so it wouldn’t be bad if he wore the grey suit.  It just depends on how much he cares what other people think.  For you, I highly recommend Rent the Runway.  You can get a great designer gown for way cheaper than buying a non-designer one.

    Post # 12
    Member
    4639 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    Since he’s not dressing in black tie attire, I wouldn’t either. Go with the cocktail dress. Alternately, he could wear a tux or even a black suit and you could wear the long one.

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