Post # 1
I’ve just been invited to a morning wedding (in November in the Northeast) where the attire specified is "morning suits preferred." So I have two questions:
– What do ladies wear? I understand that morning dress is the morning equivalent of white tie, which I think means ladies wear long gowns and, often, gloves. What about for the morning? And, seeing as it’s November and autumn, what colors are appropriate for a morning wedding?
– If a guy doesn’t have a morning suit but owns a tux, can he wear that? Or is a grey suit preferable, as a tux is evening wear?
I know one of the bridesmaids and will try to get the DL from her. But for now: any advice? I need to get shopping soon!
Post # 3
Technically a tux would not be appropriate morning dress for a man, since morning dress incorporates the cutaway coat with a black or grey tie. A "morning suit" would simply be a grey suit, and I assume that the main reason for using the term would be to try to avoid very casual dress and also because requiring formal dress would not be appropriate in the morning. So a black tux (being formal dress, and black) would not really be appropriate. If your guy doesn’t have a suit, it’s likely that a nice pair of dress pants and a sports coat with a tie would be the closest approximation.
At events where men wear formal morning dress (such as the Royal Ascot), women generally wear a day dress, hat, and gloves. I wouldn’t wear a long dress in the morning, but a formal tea length dress (NOT a cocktail dress) would be appropriate. I would think that you can dispense with the hat and gloves unless you just love the drama. I doubt that most femaleguests will go out and buy a hat and gloves just for this occasion, just as I doubt that most men will go out and buy a cutaway coat.
Post # 3
This is incorrect.
Morning dress involves a morning coat (long, cutaway jacket), waistcoat, striped trousers and necktie.
Morning suits involve the same, except the morning coat, waistcoat and striped trousers are all the same colour—usually mid-grey.
Nowadays, however, ‘morning dress’ and ‘morning suit’ are used interchangably. This is technically incorrect, but if you see ‘morning dress’, ‘morning coat’ or ‘morning suit’ as the dress code, you can be sure that either option above is appropriate. (To be strictly traditional, only the bridegroom wears a morning suit, i.e. matching morning coat, waistcoat and trousers, but few people care much about this rule anymore.)
Wearing a lounge suit (i.e. business suit) is the next best option.
Wearing black tie (dinner suit, or ‘tuxedo’ in American English) is incorrect. Black tie is evening wear and shouldn’t be worn before about 6pm.
Post # 4
Thank you!! I can only second everything you wrote. I am adding a picture to help visualise the difference. The outfit worn by Prince Charles in this picture is a morning suit (coat, waistcoat, trousers –> same colour and fabric), Prince Andrew’s wearing morning dress.
Post # 5