You find yourself with three weddings in as many months. Are there any guidelines for guests? Yes! Your job is to help the couple celebrate this event. Guests are invited to provide public witness to the legal ceremony taking place. Marriage is a public statement which indicates the new legal status of the couple.
There aren't a lot of "rules" about what it means to be a wedding guest, but there are some traditional expectations plus the question - What should I wear?
Obviously times change and for many our current culture may be more informal than in the past, but a wedding is an important event that one honors by dressing appropriately. To find out what is expected, check the wedding web page for clues as to how formal the wedding will be. If you have friends in the wedding party, ask them. But generally, these guidelines should help you decide.
1. Don't dress to stand out. Remember that the bride and groom are the stars of this event.
2. When in doubt, it is usually better to "overdress" from normal rather than underdress.
3. Avoid low cut, skin tight, skimpy dresses. Don't overdo bling and/or glitter.
4. You can wear a black dress - but white is iffy. The rule on white is that it should not compete in anyway with the bride's gown.
5. Be wary if the wedding is to be "informal". Ask around about what others are planning to wear. Try to take clues from where the wedding is being held. If it is in a cathedral with the reception following at an upscale hotel, you know to go for more formal attire. If it is at a cattle ranch, you know that it's likely to be more informal. Ask friends about what their take is on "informal". It should mean you've made an effort to appear well put together rather than cut offs and flip flops.
6. If the wedding is "semi formal" it means that men should wear a suit and tie and women should wear a suit, a tailored dress or pant suit.
7. If the wedding is clearly a formal affair, men should wear tuxedos and women should wear cocktail dresses - long or short - but remember rule #3 above.
Whatever level of appropriate dress you decide on, one other item to include is to wear your very best manners. It is an important day in the couple's life and one honors them by behaving well.