Of the many ways guests can ruin a wedding, showing up in a white dress ranks high on the list. But this surprisingly common mistake isn't the only fashion faux pas wedding guests are making.
With the start of wedding season here, we thought we should find out exactly what guests should avoid wearing.
Here are the worst things you could possibly wear:
A WHITE DRESS
It sounds pretty obvious, but guests show up in white more often than you think. Despite it being a longstanding tradition for the bride to wear white on her wedding day, some guests really do show up to weddings in white dresses.
Other bridal colors and styles of dresses are also out of the question.
If it could be a wedding dress, it shouldn't be on your body unless you're the bride. Avoid anything white. Same goes for creme, light beige, off white, eggshell... and especially white lace.
There's only one exception to this rule: You can wear it only if the bride has explicitly said the guests can wear white, perhaps if they are are going with a white theme wedding.
THE SAME COLOR AS THE BRIDESMAIDS
Dressing like the bride is one problem; dressing like a bridesmaid is another.
If you actually know what the bridesmaids are wearing, and YOU'RE not a bridesmaid, try to avoid looking like a member of the bridal party. Don't overthink it, and certainly don't bother the bride, but if you're sure that the bridesmaids are all wearing pink chiffon, maybe go for gray instead.
Wear denim only if the wedding is super casual.
Unless its a Denim and Diamonds dress code, denim is pretty much an unwelcome guest at a wedding. This doesn't mean that pants or a jumpsuit are off the table, but it's best to leave your jeans at home.
If you're not sure, just don't wear it.
SHORTS OR KHAKIS
It doesn't look good, even if you're the groom!
For anyone thinking of wearing shorts to a wedding, Just don't.
Khakis are another big faux pas. If the invite says semiformal, do not wear khakis.
This goes without saying, but with the rise of athleisure — and fancy athleisure — sweats have no place at a wedding. If you are thinking about it, just don't.
A VERY REVEALING DRESS
What you wear underneath your outfit can be just as important.
While you'll feel underdressed at most weddings in shorts or sweatpants, you can wear a fancy outfit — and be underdressed in a more literal sense.
Fashion that reveals what's underneath is everywhere these days. A deep plunging back looks gorgeous but not when we can see your [bra] straps. Invest in a quality strapless bra or have your tailor sew cups inside.
That doesn't mean you should feel as if you have to cover up completely, though. It's OK to show some skin, but show it with caution and class, and always plan to cover up during a ceremony with a shawl or cape.
A DISTRACTING OR EXTREME OUTFIT
Don't upstage the bride with a dramatic outfit.
Just as bad as outfits that show too much are outfits that show off too much.
This is the couple's day to shine, so while you should dress up and dress festive, don't overdo it. If you're on the fence or need a barometer, ask yourself, 'If I were the bride, would I want my guest to wear this?' If the answer is no, you probably shouldn't wear it.
It sounds obvious, but all too often, it happens, so better to be safe than sorry.