Let’s talk dress code. Have you ever shown up to an event feeling either extremely over/underdressed? The. Worst.

Personally, I would rather be overdressed than underdressed, and depending on the event, you will stand out either way, which is totally unacceptable at a wedding! Here is your wedding wording attire decoder.

White Tie

This is the most formal of dress codes – think Met Ball Gala. I mean, isn’t it everyone’s dream to go to the Met Ball?

Male: A long black jacket with tails that fall to the back of the knee, a white cotton or piqué shirt [Piqué, refers to a weaving style, normally used with cotton yarn, which is characterized by raised parallel cords or geometric designs in the fabric. Piqué fabrics vary from semi-sheer dimity to heavyweight waffle cloth, a similar texture is used in polo shirts.], white piqué vest, formal black shoes, and white piqué bow tie. Trousers should match the color and fabric of your coat and tails, and often feature a subtle satin or grosgrain stripe along the outer seams.

Female: A formal, full-length A-line, sheath or ball gown. Glamorous makeup and dramatic jewelry and hair are totally appropriate.

Black Tie

This is the most common for a formal wedding – think Fairmont MacDonald weddings have this expectation and any wedding typically held in the evening.

Male: a tuxedo, literally with a black tie.

Female: a long formal gown is perfect but a shorter cocktail dress is okay too. Make sure there is a glamorous aspect to the dress; sparkly beads or gold embellishments. Black is a no-fail dress color for a black tie wedding guest dress, but jewel tones, metallic and other dark or vibrant hues make the formality pop.

Formal / Black Tie Optional

Very similar to a ‘Black Tie’ event. Except a tuxedo isn’t required but you can still wear one if you have it, why not! Also gives a bit more options for the ladies!

Male: a tuxedo or formal dark suit, literally with a black tie.

Female: a long formal gown is perfect but a shorter cocktail dress is again, okay too. This is also where you can pull out the dressy suit/rompers.

Cocktail Attire

Two steps down from the ‘Black Tie’ route, no tuxedo is required for this event and you can skip looking for a floor-length dress, unless you want to, of course.

Male: a suit and tie = perfect. You can steer away from blacks/navy during these events.

Female: A cocktail dress or dressy suit or jumpsuit.

Semi-Formal / Dressy Casual

This is mainly dependent on time; darker colors for the evening, lighter colors and fabrics for daytime.

Male: simple. A suit and tie.

Female: dressy skirt + top or jumpsuit is fine.

Casual / Daytime

Casual means anything goes. Except for jeans/shorts. Business casual is a safe bet.

Male: dress pants in a button-down shirt or polo.

Female: summer sundress or a skirt or pants with a nice blouse. Makeup and hair can be natural.






Edmonton, Alberta, Canada