How to be the best-dressed wedding guest
Wedding season is officially upon us: Cara Delevingne just performed maid-of-honor duties for her sister Poppy, and Kim Kardashian and Kanye West will make it official this weekend. I wasn’t on the guest list for either of those nuptials—but I will be attending a wedding (my first ever!) next month. And while Cara likely didn’t stress over what to wear (it helps to have Karl as a BFF), I’m feeling a little out of my comfort zone. I’ve got the plane ticket and the gift, but my outfit is still up for debate—just how formal is “black tie optional” for a June reception in the South? So I called two celebrity stylists—Cher Coulter and Kate Young—and got their wedding-guest style rules.
How would you style someone for a daytime outdoor wedding?
Coulter: “I’m English, so I like weddings to be light and bright and colorful. For daytime, go with light silks and cottons. Silks look more expensive. Florals are always nice, and any sort of lace or crochet. Think of a Chloe or Isabel Marant dress—they’re always perfect.”
What about shoes?
Coulter: “I hate the word ‘wedge,’ but I do think wedges, or something with a thicker heel, are better. The setting doesn’t lend itself to a spiky heel; that’s better for evening.”
If the dress code is black tie, what should you wear?
Coulter: “You should look simple and chic more than anything. I’d do a knee-length cocktail dress. To me, black tie is just a sophisticated, elegant dress. The bride should be the most dressed.”
Young: “It means wear your best dress. That can be a gown if you’d like, but it definitely doesn’t have to be.”
Is it morbid to wear black?
Young: “No, you can absolutely wear black, but it’s a little somber for a beachy or countryside wedding.”
What about a jumpsuit?
Young: “Yes! I love a jumpsuit.”
Coulter: “I would rather see a woman in a really chic tux.”
Aside from old-lady shawls, what do you recommend for a cover-up?
Coulter: “A lightweight, neutral-colored jacket over your shoulders. Chloe and Zara both do blazers really well.”
We’re seeing more guests and maids of honor, like Cara Delevingne and Pippa Middleton, wearing white to weddings. Is it OK now?
Coulter: “No, I wouldn’t. I think you should be in florals and pretty, summery colors. You want it to be joyous and colorful. It’s a celebration at the end of the day. A lot of weddings can get kind of stiff—I think everyone should bring really bright-colored confetti, too.”
Young: “No, don’t wear white! Wait until your own wedding.”
– Alexandra Tunell