(Closed) Why is it inappropriate to wear white or ivory to a wedding?

posted 11 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 32
Member
2 posts
Wannabee
  • Wedding: December 2004

Cause you are simply not the bride!  I really don’t care about many things in life…but this one really do bother me…and you see it happen all the time…a bit like seeing ur hubby chewing open mouth after the wedding etc…….it’s just not OK.  Basic crap I guess.  I once opened an umbrella inside the house…and then was told it’s bad luck.  I was quite upset as I did not know, and seem to draw some negative energy quite easily…so if you did not know, I suppose it’s no big deal.  But if you do, WHY? 🙂

Post # 33
Member
4211 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

I agree with spaniel! But let me just show you the people wearing white and how it really wasnt bad…. on the left is my younger (17 yr old) cousin and on the right is my Aunt who is like 58…..then the photo below is my bff from the 3rd grade – I agree though that if you have another color to wear then dont wear white because you really dont know how a bride is going to react!

 

Post # 34
Member
3060 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2010

I could go either way on this one.  In one aspect, I am wearing a very ornate, heavy, beaded ivory dress – – so it is doubtful anyone, even in white, would look more like a bride than me.  BUT, not everyone wears such a formal dress – I saw a picture where a guest wore a white silky long dress, that looked exactly like a more casual wedding dress. 

You just never know what the bride is wearing – why risk looking more like a bride? There are so many colors in the world, LOL.  Do you really HAVE to wear white?

Post # 35
Member
1799 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

@PitBulLover: your right, its isnt THAT bad..BUT the dress your aunt is wearing, I have seen a bride wear that to her wedding reception…so it COULD be bad…so why risk it right?

Post # 36
Member
3330 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

Ideally, I wouldn’t want anyone else to wear white. I think it would depend on the personality of the ‘offender’ though, as to whether or not I would be irked. It’s not a big enough deal to ruin the wedding or anything, but I would look back and be pissed if it was an attention seeker that did it.

Post # 37
Member
1065 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

I can relate to this.  I wore an all-white dress to my cousin’s wedding when I was 15.  I don’t understand why the adult women in my family didn’t say anything… maybe it didn’t occur to them.

I wouldn’t care.  I’ve been to a few weddings recently and at every single one, at least one guest has worn a dress that was primarily white.  I don’t think they were competition for the bride, and I don’t think I was competition for the bride at my cousin’s wedding.

But, if someone were to wear a very formal all-white dress, that would be a little weird, and I can see being upset with that, though I’m still not sure it would bother me.  I’d think it was odd, but leave it at that.

Post # 38
Member
3214 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2011

@SerenaSF:

View original reply
@Mrs Grape:

I’m with you guys. It is one of the few wedding traditions I find totally baffling. I posted about this on Mrs. Knitting’s thread, but to me it just seems like it serves no purpose. The bride (and groom!) will be the center of attention ANYWAY.  So this rule serves one of two purposes: to give people one more thing to be offended by, and to give sociopaths with too much time on their hands a way to subtly insult a bride without actually saying or doing anything.

Say someone does wear a white dress. Either they’re not familiar with the intricaies of wedding etiquette, or they’re deliberately trying to be rude. If it’s A), there’s nothing to be upset about. If it’s B), the only reason they would succeed in stealing attention from the bride is because people know about this dumb rule in the first place! If there was no rule, no one would notice or care, and thus no harm would be done. 

I also don’t get the “Trying to steal attention from the bride” thing. In what way? What sort of attention? It’s not like people pay attention to you at a wedding simply because you’re wearing a white dress; they pay attention because you’re the one getting married. How does wearing a white dress steal attention anyway? GAH! 

Sorry for the rant – it’s that I truly, truly don’t understand what the problem would be with wearing white, unless a deliberate insult was intended – and if the latter, the insult is only possible because of the rule that you don’t wear white.

Post # 39
Member
252 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

So nobody owns anything else wedding appropriate in their closets other than a white or ivory dress?  Just don’t do it.  The bride shines in white -every girl gets her day -let HER have it.  It just looks attention-seeking whether the bride is okay with it or not.  I don’t know where the tradition comes from, but it is what it is, and it’s better to just step in line.  (What you did as a “youngster” can be chalked up to inexperience, but now that you know, I wouldn’t do it again.  I have a few white/ivory/printed dresses -NOT for weddings.  My little sister wore a nearly identical dress to my bridal shower as me -this happens a lot -we must be telepathic or something, but I don’t *think” she knew that only the bride wears white at her shower.  I don’t think I knew this until that day either or maybe I learned that here.  I wouldn’t have cared but in some photos it’s hard to determine who’s the bride.)

Post # 40
Member
554 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2009

It’s the bride’s day to wear white and be radiant.  I find it an @#$%hole move to wear a white dress if you’re a guest.  By not respecting these sorts of traditions, a wedding can become less special. 

Post # 41
Member
4211 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

@Baileyh: Thats true  – my step mom wore a very similar dress to hers and my dads wedding so yes sometimes it isnt appropriate. I would never wear all white to a wedding! The closest thing to white I would wear is my rehearsal dinner dress that also has blue, green, yellow and black on it!

Post # 42
Member
3214 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2011

But the question isn’t whether or not you should, the question is why? I never have and never will wear a white dress to a wedding (other than my own!). But I still don’t think that this rule/tradition serves a purpose, because I don’t see how wearing white automatically diverts attention in the absence of a rule saying that it does.

Post # 43
Member
5165 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

Personally I dont care. But in some situations where the bride is wearing a simple white dress, its a bit weird to see another guest also wearing the white dress. I think its a traditional thing to avoid wearing white so that the bride can be the only one in that color.. but some people are completely unable to respect this..

Post # 44
Member
4107 posts
Honey bee

@teaadntoast:  i think there is a difference too between white pants AND white top. since JamaicaBride just mentioned the pants, i assume that she wore a colored top. which makes it totally appropriate i think.

 

View original reply
@Baileyh: i agree completely.

Post # 45
Member
83 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

With today’s fashion, you never know how dressy or casual the bride’s dress will be.  In My Humble Opinion, a guest wearing white either (1) does not know the rule or (2) is an attention hog (a trait that i despise).

The bride spent hundreds of dollars to stand out in her white dress.  Out of all the colors in the crayon box, its really not that difficult to find a non-white dress. 

I would be livid if someone whore white to my wedding. 

Post # 46
Member
4211 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

@2shy2Bbf: The thing is you say that now but during your wedding, I promise you, you wont be. You probably wont even notice! I did not even notice at all that those people wore white until I started seeing pictures afterwards! And I actually thought I would care as well – until it happened that is. Its just not something that will bother you on the happiest day of your life because you are in a surreal world!

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