How to tell wedding guests what to wear

Guest post by Mari

Quite a few people have asked me what they should wear to our “casual lowcountry wedding shindig,” and I've given them lots of suggestions. But I thought I would make a little pamphlet (that I emailed/Facebooked to the guests) to help everyone with packing.

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Feel free to steal this idea! It was actually my dad's — he had just gotten off the phone with one of the guests (poor, confused soul) and said, “Maybe you could make a cute ‘what to wear' guide to tell them what to pack?” I thought it was brilliant, and started thinking of what TV shows/movies that Ryan (FH) and I loved, and go with those!

I thought it would tell people that we were serious when we said we wanted people to be comfy… and at the same time, be goofballs. 😉 I hope it helps them!

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Comments on How to tell wedding guests what to wear

  1. This has to be about the coolest thing I’ve ever seen. We are having a similar issue so I just might have to steal this idea 🙂 Thanks for sharing.

  2. Brilliant idea!
    I see so many people online totally lost because they can’t imagine not wearing a suit and tie or evening gown to a wedding, but it’s clearly not appropriate for that particular wedding. I think something like this (or even just a photo for those who don’t want to put together a leaflet) is an excellent way to get across exactly what you mean.

  3. OMG! SALVATION! we’re having a halloween wedding and want it to be classy, not cheesy or trashy, but our parents keep saying everyone should wear costumes and just make it a halloween party. 🙁 neither FH nor i want that at all. we do want people to have fun and if they were “nice” costumes then we don’t mind. i’m so stealing this so people know what “costumes” or outfits are ok and what aren’t. 😀 yay, no more stress about warding off slutty schoolgirl costumes. (although don’t get me wrong, there’s a time and place were costumes like that are AWESOME, i just don’t want them at my wedding.)

    • Shannon, my husband and I had the same issue – we had a Fantasy Masquerade Ball themed wedding in October and we were worried that people would dress in cheap costumes and not the whole masquerade ball look we were going for. We set up a website with images to what we were going for as well as send out a list of movies which featured masquerade ball scenes like what we were going for. It worked out well and luckily no one showed up as Catwoman XD
      Good luck with you wedding 🙂

      This is article is great. Such a good idea to get your guests on the same wavelenght.

      • I had two birthday party Maskerades in a row, and we set a theme for the costumes right in the invites; didn’t need any pictures or fancy web setup at all. One was “Any character, real or fiction, from before 1900” and the other was “children’s books” and people really got into the spirit- my great grandmother got decked out in a tiara as the Queen Mother for the first one

  4. you are my guardian angel….I was wondering how in the hell would I tell my guest how to dress for the wedding, especially the in-laws,,,,thank you

  5. I’m aving the opposite problem. I’m getting married outdoors because to me that’s the most sacred place. People are assuming, therefore, that its a casual wedding and asking if they can bring their dogs!

  6. I just sent this to my fiance and he shouted gleefully, “YES! WHY CAN’T MOM UNDERSTAND THIS?!” haha

  7. Here’s what we put on our wedsite:

    What’s the dress code for the wedding?
    Smart casual. <– links to

    Basically, we’d like you to look nice but be comfortable. No jeans for the ceremony please, but feel free to bring clothes to change into for the reception.

    The wedding will proceed rain or shine. Please watch the forecast and plan accordingly (just to be safe). In case of rain, everything will take place indoors, but there is walking outdoors to reach different buildings (washrooms, Rubber Rodeo, sleeping cabins and bunkhouses).

  8. This awesome idea has now been stolen and put in my back pocket for future use. My FH and I are having a steampunk themed wedding and we’re so worried we’re going to end up with a sea of well intentioned goth costumes from the guests….nobody seems to know the difference and this is sure to help 🙂

  9. We had this problem a bit. So we described what we would be wearing and told people to “come as you are”. The best thing, my mom wore something fairly formal because she wanted to. My boss, showed up in leather chaps (he’s a Harley rider and rode his bike the 40 miles to the wedding.

  10. I love it. I went from thinking I was going to get DB separates (I want RED for my big day) but ended up with a beautiful $40 gypsy skirt and most likely will get a beautiful coordinating camisole for the top half of my wedding ensemble. I don’t want people in hose and polyester and pearls and cufflinks etc!

  11. LOVE THIS! We’re having a halloween wedding and want people in costume, but wanted to avoid having to state on the invation “Costumes are a MUST”. This is a much nicer way of saying “Hey it’s Halloween put a costume on!”

    • For our upcoming Halloween wedding, we asked people to wear costumes or funeral attire because some of our guests are just too uptight to feel comfortable in costumes at a wedding, and feel that they should be dressed up. This way, they have the option of coming in costume, or wearing all black. 🙂

  12. We’re having a Steampunk wedding and we’re putting “Victorian/Steampunk dress requested” on thee invitations, and then a whole page about it on the wedding website.

  13. what a brilliant idea! my FH and i are currently on the hunt to make a variation of this with pictures from movies that we love. for example, on the “not this” side, the picture from the hangover when they are in the blue matching suits for the wedding in vegas…
    so fun! so original! thank you thank you thank you for this wonderful idea 🙂

  14. I love this idea, but couldn’t figure out how to upload pictures to my wedding website, so I wrote this:
    Wedding AND Reception to be held in the grass,
    So please pick clothing for comfort and class!

    Because people stress about what clothing to enable,
    “Smart Casual“ is our pick, if you need a label.

    Tuxes and suits will be making you sweat,
    So wear something lighter that won’t make you fret.

    So Khakis and polos, linens and dress shirts,
    And sundresses, blouses, summery skirts.

    And we love the 40’s, with suspensers and vests.
    Fedoras and flapper dresses are really the best.

    While none of that is something we require
    Feel free to be festive in “Swing Era” attire!

    • I hope you don’t mind if I use this and tweak it a little. I have to give you props for being so creative and in the sweetest way ever.

  15. I love this idea! Our invites will say ‘pants optional’ on them so I am pretty sure people will get the point that it’s very casual (and I am also fairly sure no one will take that seriously), but if that doesn’t work I may steal your idea.

  16. We are having our wedding about 6 hours from home. So in my wedding invitations I made an information type card. I had the hotel, venue, and driving directions on there. But since I had so many people asking me what to wear I added, “The bride will be showing some leg, so feel free to do the same. Although boots & jeans are recommended we”ll gladly take any barefoot hippies that wonder up.”
    I got lots of compliments on that. A lot of guests were lost as to how formal or informal it was and everyone loves a hippie!

  17. Might be ganking that idea. I have fears of my artsy family and his khaki clad clan smashing into a trainwreck of horrible fashion and as a fashion nerd, that makes me more distraught than a lot of other parts of my wedding.

  18. This is a fantastic idea!!! I work in a hospital laboratory, and am planning a beach wedding – I’m feeling a reverse “LABORATORY SAFETY CHART” coming on… No Shoes, No Safety glasses, Eating and drinking are not only permitted, they are recommended….

  19. Ah! Thank you! I’ve been trying to figure out how to ask people to wear their favorite color (in a casual way). This makes it so much easier! (It’s a full blown gypsy wedding so I need as much color as possible)

  20. Love this! We arent planning on going with a super specific theme (each table will be a different fictional place running from fantasy to scifi) but wirh a medieval/Renaissance enchanted forest bent. Its not quite black tie but not semiformal either so we are telling our wedding party the level of formality of the professors at the Yule Ball in HP. This would make it so much easier for the general guests.

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