Post # 1
Im not sure if I have to wear a long dress. It starts at 2:30 and goes into the night. It’s all indoors from what I can tell. I don’t want to be the only one in a long dress, but when I search formal only long dresses come up. Any advice is appreciated.
Post # 2
Can you ask the bride/groom/immediate family of them what the dress code is? If it’s black tie formal, you should wear a gown.
Post # 3
I agree with PP. If it’s a formal dress, you should wear a gown. If it’s semi formal, you can have a bit more leeway. The best course of action is to ask the bride.
Post # 4
Traditionally, long gowns and tuxedos are only to be worn in the evening. So while they can CALL an afternoon wedding “formal”, by definition an afternoon wedding is, at best, semi-formal. Given that so many people wear cocktail attire even for formal events now, I cannot imagine that cocktail attire for an afternoon wedding would be in any way unacceptable.
Post # 5
I don’t talk to the bride, I’m friends with the groom and he said it’s formal? Lol. It’s hot here though and I don’t really want to wear a long dress. I have a feeling people might though.
Post # 6
Do you know anyone else going to the wedding that you can ask? I wouldn’t be happy wearing a formal gown at 2:30 in the afternoon in the middle of summer. Maybe you an find a maxi dress that looks more formal but isn’t as heavy as a gown to be on the safe side?
Post # 7
a 2:30 wedding is not formal. and i promise that everyone is not going to show up in full length gowns, no matter what the groom said. go with cocktail attire and you’ll be fine.
Post # 8
I agree with PP–a 2:30 start time is not a black-tie formal affair and does not require an evening gown. (There is a reason they used to be called “evening” gowns.)
Post # 9
I would wear a cocktail dress.
Post # 10
Echoing PPs that a summer afternoon wedding is not really “formal”. I have seen a lot of brides trying to pass their wedding off as a “formal affair” when in actual fact it isn’t.
People are often quick to say that traditional etiquette is nonsense, but it does help avoid confusing situations like this.
Dress well, but don’t feel like you have to be in a gown.
Post # 11
I’m dealing with the same question. In my case, the wedding is in the evening and at least the ceremony is outdoors. The wedding starts well before sunset, though, so it’s gonna be freaking hot. But formal definitely = long gown, so I’m desperately trying to find something I won’t die in. I’m thinking something with a sheer-ish shell and a shorter/thin lining. I might end up having to sew something myself because everything for sale right now is short or jersey knit maxi dresses!
Post # 12
Even for an evening wedding that is formal or black tie optional, a cocktail dress is acceptable.
<strong data-reactid=”211″>”The Invitation Says: “Formal” or “Black Tie Optional”
The wording here indicates something slightly less formal than black tie is acceptable. So, a tuxedo isn’t required, but the event is still formal enough for one to be appropriateFor the ladies: A long dress, dressy separates, or a formal cocktail dress
For the men: A tuxedo or a formal dark suit, white shirt, and conservative tie.”
The wedding may be the groom’s idea of formal, but there’s no way I would feel obligated to wear a floor length gown to anything that starts at 2:30 pm.
Post # 13
I agree about not taking the groom’s word for it. He may be relaying what his fiancee is saying, but there’s also a good chance he thinks anything dressed up is formal. My husband thinks a button up and slacks is formal lol.