Author Topic: Showing guests what to wear  (Read 6003 times)

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Surianne

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #45 on: March 31, 2014, 07:52:03 PM »
I love this idea!  Like some of the previous posters, I always feel anxious trying to figure out what to wear to a wedding.  Even if I knew how to determine dress from the style of invitation, and if I had time to do research on the venue (how does this work? Do you call them and ask?), I'd still feel uncomfortable. 

Last summer, I went to an outdoor wedding by a river (reception in a tent) and the invitation had pictures of sporting equipment all over it, so I figured it would be safe to wear a simple cotton dress and chunky sandals perfect for tramping around the park.  Of course, it turned out that everyone else was in fancy wear with sequins.  Sigh.  I honestly just don't know enough about fashion to figure it out by myself. 

So if it seems condescending, I wonder if it would help to think of the photos as for the people (like me) who genuinely appreciate the guidance, and not as an insult to those of you who do enjoy fashion and understand more about dress codes.

turnip

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #46 on: April 01, 2014, 01:30:04 PM »
I was thinking about this last night and I suddenly had a new sympathy for people who don't like wedding registries...


See, for me, I feel quite comfortable with how I dress for weddings.  I have a plan, I like it, I don't worry about it.  Now if I saw a suggestion list like _this_ from the B&G, I'd feel like what they were saying was "If care about us, you'll dress like this".  It seems like if they are willing to put so much effort into the dress code ( and maybe it only took a few minutes, but it looks like a lot of effort ) then it must be _really_ important to them that everyone look right, and I find that kind of shallow and off putting - why are they so concerned with what I wear?    And it would make me feel like if I didn't want to go out and buy a new outfit, I might as well not come.

I think other people get that vibe from wedding registries - not "here's a list if you want to use it", but "here's a list we spend hours putting together because our gifts are really important, and if you buy us something else we are going to be disappointed".  I now see how unpleasant that could feel.

Now I still am OK with registries because when I buy a gift I am trying to find something the bride and groom would approve of, so I am not bothered by having their input.  But when I get dressed for a wedding I'm really not expecting the B&G to evaluate my fashion choices.   If they do, and I'm not at the wedding of Tim Gunn and Nina Garcia, ( yes, I know, just stick with me ) then I think they're probably a little to caught up in appearances for my tastes.

TurtleDove

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #47 on: April 01, 2014, 01:40:24 PM »
It seems like if they are willing to put so much effort into the dress code ( and maybe it only took a few minutes, but it looks like a lot of effort ) then it must be _really_ important to them that everyone look right, and I find that kind of shallow and off putting - why are they so concerned with what I wear?   

I see it less about the HC wanting everyone to look "right" and more about wanting everyone to feel comfortable.  A great many people feel more comfortable when they are dressed to the same level as other people at an event.  I think there is nothing wrong with wanting a more formal event, or a more casual event.  I am generally confident in what I wear, and am comfortable in dressy clothes or in more casual attire, but if I showed up in a sundress and everyone else was wearing a cocktail dress, I would feel less awesome than if I had known this was a cocktail dress occasion (or vice versa).

GlitterIsMyDrug

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #48 on: April 01, 2014, 01:48:24 PM »
Now I still am OK with registries because when I buy a gift I am trying to find something the bride and groom would approve of, so I am not bothered by having their input.  But when I get dressed for a wedding I'm really not expecting the B&G to evaluate my fashion choices.   If they do, and I'm not at the wedding of Tim Gunn and Nina Garcia, ( yes, I know, just stick with me ) then I think they're probably a little to caught up in appearances for my tastes.

See I see it as being less of caring about how their guests look, and more of about caring about their guests comfort.

For instance, in the original article, they're getting married in the middle of a field and having a BBQ afterwards. It'll be warm earlier in the day but will cool off as you go. So, their pictures suggest flats (so as not to sink), what I'd define as business casual (nice but no suits, no gowns, slacks and blouses good), and layers (sweaters and such to warm up with later). And yes, you can say that with words, but some people aren't...word people. Like right there I was not a word person because I couldn't come up with a better word then "word people". Some people are very visual. So a few examples, of dresses, of slacks/blouse combos, give the idea of "something that looks like this would be comfortable at our wedding". At least to me.

I have trouble getting how this translates to "Only a mauve skirt, with a teal shirt, and by deity woman don't wear last years shoes", rather then just "Confused on what to wear? Here are suggestions of styles that would work well". If you already plan on wearing a pair of wedges and your cute wrap dress then you're good. You might look at it go "Oh I should remember a sweater", because they keep showing layers and mention that layers are an excellent idea as the temps will drop. However if you're someone going "I've never attended a wedding the middle of a field...what should I wear? Jeans? I usually wear heels and nice pantsuit....but I don't think that's right here..." and then you see the pictures and go "Oh, I have a pair of flats and cute skirt and shirt I can wear. Do I have a sweater to go with it? I might want to pick one up".

And of course...looking at the website is entirely optional to begin with.

Harriet Jones

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #49 on: April 01, 2014, 01:55:48 PM »
Some of us may not be picture people, either.   I know I'd prefer words - flats recommended, bring a sweater for after dark.  I don't know that I'd interpret a picture of someone in a dress+sweater as "bring a sweater".





GlitterIsMyDrug

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #50 on: April 01, 2014, 01:59:43 PM »
Some of us may not be picture people, either.   I know I'd prefer words - flats recommended, bring a sweater for after dark.  I don't know that I'd interpret a picture of someone in a dress+sweater as "bring a sweater".

On the site they did both. They'd put up a picture and then the caption would be like a sentence explaining why it worked.

ETA: At the bottom of the article there is a link to their website (they call it a wedding blog, I'm using the terms interchangeably as I often do). So here it is: http://layneandjoel.blogspot.com/ and if you scroll a bit you can see what they did with their outfits exactly. They did one of the men-folk too, it's on top. But lets face it...men-folk's outfits always seem to be easier. I think because they have less options. Sometimes less is better.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2014, 02:04:43 PM by GlitterIsMyDrug »

whatsanenigma

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #51 on: April 01, 2014, 02:01:31 PM »
I very much agree with both TurtleDove and GlitterIsMyDrug.

turnip

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #52 on: April 01, 2014, 02:01:47 PM »
I'm actually not sure it's a bad idea, just exploring my gut reaction.  If they want to say 'outdoor wedding, ground might be muddy!" then I won't wear pointed heels and I'll check the weather before going.  A bunch of pictures and suggestions just seems a bit OTT to me.

And not surprisingly it's women's wear - men are allowed to show up in the same boring sports coat to any occasion and no one wonders at it.  I wish it were as easy for women.   It's not the happy couple's fault it isn't, nor is it female guests who tend to be the ones spending time worrying about the difference between 'garden party' and 'tea time', but I find it unfortunate all the same.

GlitterIsMyDrug

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #53 on: April 01, 2014, 02:05:39 PM »
Wait...is there a difference between garden party and tea time? Because I think my outfit would look very much the same either way.

turnip

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #54 on: April 01, 2014, 02:08:05 PM »
Wait...is there a difference between garden party and tea time? Because I think my outfit would look very much the same either way.

I doubt it  :)  But I suspect someone invited to both styles of wedding would worry about a subtle distinction that they were missing.  ( Glove for teatime?  Sandals for garden party?  I don't know )

buvezdevin

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #55 on: April 01, 2014, 02:10:23 PM »
Now I still am OK with registries because when I buy a gift I am trying to find something the bride and groom would approve of, so I am not bothered by having their input.  But when I get dressed for a wedding I'm really not expecting the B&G to evaluate my fashion choices.   If they do, and I'm not at the wedding of Tim Gunn and Nina Garcia, ( yes, I know, just stick with me ) then I think they're probably a little to caught up in appearances for my tastes.

See I see it as being less of caring about how their guests look, and more of about caring about their guests comfort.

For instance, in the original article, they're getting married in the middle of a field and having a BBQ afterwards. It'll be warm earlier in the day but will cool off as you go. So, their pictures suggest flats (so as not to sink), what I'd define as business casual (nice but no suits, no gowns, slacks and blouses good), and layers (sweaters and such to warm up with later). And yes, you can say that with words, but some people aren't...word people. Like right there I was not a word person because I couldn't come up with a better word then "word people". Some people are very visual. So a few examples, of dresses, of slacks/blouse combos, give the idea of "something that looks like this would be comfortable at our wedding". At least to me.

I have trouble getting how this translates to "Only a mauve skirt, with a teal shirt, and by deity woman don't wear last years shoes", rather then just "Confused on what to wear? Here are suggestions of styles that would work well". If you already plan on wearing a pair of wedges and your cute wrap dress then you're good. You might look at it go "Oh I should remember a sweater", because they keep showing layers and mention that layers are an excellent idea as the temps will drop. However if you're someone going "I've never attended a wedding the middle of a field...what should I wear? Jeans? I usually wear heels and nice pantsuit....but I don't think that's right here..." and then you see the pictures and go "Oh, I have a pair of flats and cute skirt and shirt I can wear. Do I have a sweater to go with it? I might want to pick one up".

And of course...looking at the website is entirely optional to begin with.

Some of the links within the article you referenced have photos and text that stated "wear this type of shorts and casual shirts and absolutely do not wear a dress or jacket" and "dress like this popular tv show, do not wear anything like this popular tv show".  Which reads as an overall style dictate rather than "for guest's comfort, here are some considerations..."

If the wedding website said something like "for anyone interested in suggestions for comfortable attire" with or without photos, that sounds considerate, and optional guidance.  Photos stating "wear this, not that" reads as fashion dictates, not guidance for guest's comfort - but stylistic preferences.
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turnip

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #56 on: April 01, 2014, 02:18:24 PM »
Good Lord, I didn't even follow the attached link.

http://media.offbeatbride.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/6/files/2010/05/WearThisNotThat.jpg

Yea, I'm sending regrets.  And how come it's OK to wear a tie to the beach cookout but not the wedding?

lowspark

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #57 on: April 01, 2014, 02:50:26 PM »
I've been trying to figure out what it was about this that bugged me and (finally) looking at the link made me realize what it is. It's the varied interpretations that are bound to come out of this. If you look at the first two pictures, I see everyone in the "wear this" example wearing black & white, maybe some gray and a bit of khaki. And the people in the "not this" picture wearing pretty colors.

I didn't even notice the tie thing until I reread turnip's post. So for me, it wasn't about the specific dressiness of the clothes they are wearing, but the colors.

What I'm trying to say is that everyone who looks at these pictures has the potential to interpret them differently. For me, it says, wear neutral colors only to the cookout. Don't dare show up in any colors. That's not really what they mean, is it?

I think that if I were invited to a cookout I could go in my closet and figure out the appropriate clothing. Or if they said, "Casual and Comfortable" for the wedding, I'd get that. Or if it's an unusual venue, like the Buddhist hall, a little extra description might be in order.

But I think showing one picture of "do" and one of "don't" doesn't do it for me. I did read the descriptions below the pictures, but they didn't really help. As turnip points, out there's a guy wearing a tie in the "do" picture but the caption says, "bathing suit, shorts and flip flops", which pretty much no one in that picture is wearing. The caption for the "don't" picture references The Housewives of Orange County, which I've never seen and have no idea how they dress, save all those lively colors in the picture!

Psychopoesie

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #58 on: April 01, 2014, 03:19:34 PM »
I've been mulling this over. I do worry about what to wear to weddings (maybe because I'm not in the prime wedding age group so I don't go to a lot these days). I'm not sure I'd find the pics in the examples given all that helpful.

It may have been intended as funny but it does come across as judgy and a bit prescriptive in both examples. Some of that is in the captions -

Dress pants or a skirt and a blouse or button up are definitely acceptable.

Some of it is in the example outfits -

Two of the real housewives outfits seem like casual sundresses, not that different to those in the lost on the island chic pics except they're not navy or neutral colours.

In the other - not sure why knee-calf length skirt/dress good, much shorter skirt bad. Leather jacket no but cardi ok? I'd be spending more time trying to decode what all this means.

The three piece suit option for the guys looked a lot more formal than any of the suggested outfits for the women, even the dress.

Some tips where helpful - knowing the ground won't work for heels and that it may get cold later helps (although if I'm coming from somewhere with a different climate, telling me how cold it could be at that time of year would help more).

May have hit exactly the right note for their guests. For me, it ended up feeling more like a reflection of the bride/happy couple's preferred style/fashion sense than about the comfort of the guests.

Ps. Lowspark posted just as I went to hit send and explained the neutral colour thing much better - yes, exactly!






Surianne

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #59 on: April 01, 2014, 03:22:44 PM »
Good Lord, I didn't even follow the attached link.

http://media.offbeatbride.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/6/files/2010/05/WearThisNotThat.jpg

Yea, I'm sending regrets.  And how come it's OK to wear a tie to the beach cookout but not the wedding?

I love this!  It's goofy and made me smile, but also understandable -- I love the combination of photo and text so it's clear why they've chosen each photo.  I'd feel very comfortable attending the wedding after seeing this link.