Author Topic: OK to Wear Black?  (Read 4287 times)

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Roses

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OK to Wear Black?
« on: December 24, 2013, 08:02:39 PM »
I will be attending an afternoon church wedding in two weeks. Reception immediately following at the church.  Would it be OK to wear a black dress to the wedding?  I've seen mixed reviews on the rules about wearing black. 

Apologies if this topic has been covered, I couldn't find prior posts so feel free to point me to one if you know it exists.

rose red

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2013, 08:09:54 PM »
I think black is fine as long as it looks "fancy," for example, the classic little black dress that you might wear on a date.  If the dress is a bit more serious, jazz it up with accessories like colorful jewelry or scarf.  One of the best investments I made was a little red lacy jacket that I wore over black dresses to several weddings.

m2kbug

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #2 on: December 24, 2013, 08:32:46 PM »
I think as a whole black is an accepted color to wear in this day and age.  You will probably be fine.  I would call the bride or coordinator to double check.  The last time I wore black to a wedding was many years ago, and I asked the bride in advance just to be sure. 

Library Dragon

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #3 on: December 24, 2013, 10:22:26 PM »
It's fine and as others have said accessories will make a big difference. They will take it from somber to festive.

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metallicafan

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #4 on: December 25, 2013, 02:17:33 AM »
Pretty much every wedding I've gone to in the last ten years, the majority of the women wore black dresses.  I myself have worn black dresses quite a few times, and I never have felt that I stood out for the wrong reasons.  Rarely have I seen anyone in a bright colored dress.

Edited to add:

Coming up in 2014, I have two weddings and the 100th anniversary of my FILs Italian society dinner dance.  I'm sure I will see a ton of black dresses. But, I will be going for color this time,  :)
« Last Edit: December 25, 2013, 01:16:01 PM by metallicafan »

Thipu1

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #5 on: December 25, 2013, 07:26:20 AM »
Dressy black with a bright accent is almost the default color for women at weddings here.

You're fine as long as you don't resemble a traditional Mediterranean widow. 

Julsie

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #6 on: December 25, 2013, 04:28:59 PM »
I'm the lone hold out who does not feel that black dresses at weddings are appropriate.  But if I was the bride and someone called to ask me, I would not be honest.  That would put me in an awkward position with which I would not be comfortable.

But I would happily adapt to black dresses at weddings if people would go back to wearing them to funerals!

Brisvegasgal

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #7 on: December 25, 2013, 05:16:36 PM »
This is an honest question - why would black be an inappropriate colour to wear at a wedding? Surely the colour doesn't matter (although I totally understand not wearing white!) but the style does?

menley

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #8 on: December 25, 2013, 05:33:36 PM »
In my experience, the little black dress has been a cocktail party staple as long as I can remember, and no one would mistake it for a mourning outfit. Yes, black was traditionally the color for mourning, but the style of clothes worn to a funeral and for a mourning period is markedly different from the style of dress worn to a wedding.

I'm biased, of course - my bridesmaids and house party all wore black and absolutely no one, even my husband's very conservative and traditional grandfather, thought of funerals when they walked in!

purple

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #9 on: December 25, 2013, 07:47:07 PM »
I also think that a black cocktail length dress would be appropriate for a wedding.

Just check that the wedding theme is not 'black and white', which seems to be quite popular these days.  You can probably tell from the invitation - if it has another colour than black and white, you're in the clear I'd say.

Having said that, I actually wore two dresses at my own wedding and the reception dress was a long black evening gown, with white lace, crystal beading and a short white veil.  Quite a few of my guests wore black dresses to my reception also and I didn't mind one little bit.  I'm sure they never expected me to be wearing black - just the way things turned out.  :)

metallicafan

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #10 on: December 25, 2013, 09:59:09 PM »
One of the two weddings I will be attending next year, my SIL will be the matron of honor, and the bridesmaid dresses are black.

mbbored

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #11 on: December 26, 2013, 12:55:58 AM »
I'm the lone hold out who does not feel that black dresses at weddings are appropriate.  But if I was the bride and someone called to ask me, I would not be honest.  That would put me in an awkward position with which I would not be comfortable.

But I would happily adapt to black dresses at weddings if people would go back to wearing them to funerals!

I personally wouldn't wear black or red to a wedding. If that was literally the only dress I had to wear, I'd be sure to top it with a colorful wrap or cardigan. However, if I saw somebody else in a black dress I wouldn't judge: everybody has their own standards.

sweetonsno

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #12 on: December 26, 2013, 01:11:34 AM »
This is my take from an American perspective (one that was shaped rather heavily by my British gran).

I think the main relationship between black and mourning is that black is a more solemn and conservative choice than colors. It is also used as a neutral. I think that as long as it is clear that the style is celebratory and you've picked something that is appropriate for the formality of the event and venue, I think black is fine. However, as is the case with other more neutral colors (anything in the brown or gray family also belongs here), I think it's important to accessorize to avoid looking too corporate.

TamJamB

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #13 on: December 26, 2013, 11:58:51 AM »
The old rule against wearing black has pretty much fallen by the wayside nowadays - especially at evening weddings -- because black is so very common for cocktail or evening dress.  I myself don't wear black to weddings because I'm old enough to feel 'funny' about it, although I definately wouldn't consider others rude if they do it.  To tell the truth, I rarely wear black anyway.  I like color.

That said, I have heard that there are parts of the country where black is still considered wrong for weddings (or wrong just for daytime or informal weddings).  If you live in a particularly conservative area, you might want to check around a bit before making the final decision on your outfilt.

TootsNYC

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Re: OK to Wear Black?
« Reply #14 on: December 30, 2013, 02:07:04 PM »
I think as a whole black is an accepted color to wear in this day and age.  You will probably be fine.  I would call the bride or coordinator to double check.  The last time I wore black to a wedding was many years ago, and I asked the bride in advance just to be sure.

Oh, I wouldn't suggest this. I still remember how heated a colleague of mine got with the whole "call up the bride and ask if the clothes are formal enough."

She was really frustrated. She had a ton of things to arrange, and take care of, etc. The wedding, with all its logistics; her move from one home to another.

She said, "Aren't these people grownups? I don't need to bother with someone else's attire!"

So, I don't think anybody should be calling the bride, or even the coordinator (how would you know who that was anyway?) and bothering her with your own wardrobe concerns.

If you can't come to a clear sense of rightness on your own, using resources other than the bride's time and energy (like, us here at EHell!! Or your neighbor, or a friend, or your mom), pick a different dress.

And I think black at a wedding is totally OK. (And my bridesmaids wore black tea-length party dresses with red sashes.)