After two years of virtual nuptials and elaborate elopements, our calendars are packed with summer weddings. Congrats to the bride and groom and all, but what are we supposed to wear for all these different dress codes?
Good news: we’ve got answers. Hold onto that invitation (you’ll need it for directions to the venue) and take a look at what it says under dress code. Then, scroll on down to find the style recommendations for every wedding dress code below.
Oh, you fancy. Welcome to the one wedding dress code you really don’t want to get wrong. The black-tie wedding derives from the Latin word “formale” (that’s right, we know Latin). Picture black tuxedos, black ties, and dark polished shoes, or rewatch the early 2002s hit “The Tuxedo” starring Jackie Chan. If you’re a guy who likes to make an entrance, your uniform always includes a bright-colored shirt. Don’t wear that. It’s white tux shirts and white tux shirts only here.
When picking a tux shirt, keep a couple of things in mind. A tux shirt should have French cuffs. (Pro tip: pair them with matching cufflinks for extra pizazz). Tux shirts should also have a fold-down collar, providing a more sophisticated look than a button-down collar.
To keep yourself from sweating through your tux jacket, we’d recommend the Leeward Tux Dress Shirt, made with superior quick-dry properties. We at Mizzen+Main designed the Leeward Dress Shirt to survive Texas weddings where our flagship store is located and where August wedding temperatures are known to hit triple digits. We love it. The Leeward Tux Dress Shirt keeps us cool all summer long.
Semi-formal weddings have a slightly less restrictive dress code. You can leave the Bond tux at home, but you don’t want to show up in jeans either. The go-to look for this style is a classic suit and tie with a collared shirt. Beyond that, cut the yellow tape and make room for your own creative touch.
Since the weather picks up in the summertime, opt for lighter-colored suits like beige or gray. Once you’ve got your suit picked out, add a pop of color with a formal shirt or fun tie. Our personal favorite semi-formal shirt is the Leeward Formal Dress Shirt. This dress shirt comes in shades of light blue to give you a touch of color without looking like you’re overdoing it.
Cocktail wedding fashion
Cocktail attire straddles the line between formal and casual. You’ll want to wear some nice pants and a blazer, but a matching suit isn’t necessary. Depending on whether or not the venue is casual, a pair of colored pants could even show up on the menu.
We love the Helmsman 5-Point Pocket Pant for that occasion. The moonlight blue color is bold enough to get you noticed without being so bright that it blinds other guests.
As for accessories, forget the tie. If you love wearing a tie, fine, throw it on. But comfortability takes priority. Also, while your followers envy your sneaker game, they’re still too casual for cocktail attire. Opt for a nice loafer instead.
Beach formal clothing
Just because you’re invited to a beach wedding doesn’t mean you should wear flip-flops and a Hawaiian shirt. If the invite says “beach formal,” you still need to pack a suit and tie. But the suit you wear to the beach is different from a suit you wear to a church.
At the beach, choose a light-colored suit with a breathable fabric like linen or polyester. Leave the Chacos at home but pick a shoe you can wear sockless. And look, we love Hawaiian shirts as much as the next guy (maybe more) but save the wild designs for the afterparty. You can still show off with a pattern though. Our Monaco Dress Shirt is lightweight and comes in a variety of patterns, making it a great statement piece for coastal weddings.
Casual wedding fashion
Casual wedding attire is different from casual street attire. We don’t care how nice your joggers are. You can’t wear them to a wedding. While this dress code requires a more relaxed look, you still want to honor the two people saying their vows.
So, if you can’t wear sweats and no one wears a tux, what are you supposed to wear? Think about how you dress for casual business meetings. Khakis or dark denim jeans paired with a polo or short-sleeve button-down shirt. The Leeward Short Sleeves Shirt works particularly well for this look. Not only do the short sleeves keep you cool, but the moisture-wicking fabric prevents pit stains from appearing halfway through the ceremony.
With wedding season right around the corner, you want to be prepared for whatever the dress code might be. Check out our other go-to wedding picks and arrive at the ceremony dressed with enough comfort to survive the heat and enough confidence to shred the dance floor.