Confusing formal dress code

posted 2 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 2
62 posts
Worker bee

Sounds fine. I don’t understand where the confusion is coming from? When in doubt, dress up a little bit more. Better safe than sorry. Also, people dont usually change between the ceremony and reception anyway.

Post # 3
819 posts
Busy bee

That sounds perfect- typically in Italy you’re asked to cover the knees and shoulders in churches, so a pashmina and floor length dress will be fine. I’d guess that since the dress code is formal and there’s no gap to change, they don’t expect anyone to be in “afternoon” clothes for the ceremony and “evening” attire later; everyone will just be a little more dressy for the ceremony 🙂

Post # 6
231 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

Long dress with a pashmina will be fine. Please tell your partner to suit up and not to wear a plaid shirt. 

Post # 7
1216 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

 What you’re planning sounds perfectly fine!

I have to say- I think this is the first thread I ever read where a poster was wishing there were a gap between the ceremony and reception! Usually it’s the other way around. 

Post # 8
12221 posts
Sugar Beekeeper

You’re right that it’s traditionally inappropriate to call for formal attire at 4 PM or in a church. In the US, “black tie” is the conventional designation for a formal affair, which would  call for dinner jacket and gowns or formal dresses.

Otherwise, unless the venue has a dress code, it’s not appropriate to dictate dress code to grownups. They are presumed to know how dress themselves for a wedding based on time of day, venue etc. To add to the confusion,  I’ve seen weddings where “formal” meant suits and dresses, but this is not an appropriate use of the term. 

As is, it’s confusing, so I’d ask. 

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