Author Topic: Showing guests what to wear  (Read 5429 times)

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Margo

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #30 on: March 28, 2014, 07:32:54 AM »
I think it comes across as pretty condescending.

I think it would be better to have more information about the venue / plans so people can decide for themselves what to wear.

So it's good to give people a heads-up that the ceremony or party will be outside on grass, so they can decide whether they want to wear flats rather than spiky heels, for instance, or if they will need to walk between the two, say so - "the ceremony will be in [venue] followed by party at [venue] which is about 5 minutes walk on a gravel path / 15 minutes hike down a mountain trail / on the top floor accessible by a cast-iron spiral staircase" or whatever is appropriate.

(I have to say, I've never been to a wedding where any kind of dress code was specified - thinking back, I think I've been influenced in choosing what to wear by knowing the people involved, and based on the venue, and what other information is provided.

glinda

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #31 on: March 28, 2014, 12:47:21 PM »
I think it may be a "know your audience" situation.  I don't know that I would post pictures necessarily, but if my nieces and nephew weren't in my wedding party would probably need some help in figuring out what to wear to the wedding being as they have never been to a wedding before this.  I have told them that they might not want to wear heels on my lawn.

For the rest of my (adult) guests, our invitation reads:

The Backyard
Our address

As most of our guests know the house is too small for a wedding and that the back yard is lawn.  If anyone asks for guidance on what to wear, we'll be more than happy to provide some.

TootsNYC

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #32 on: March 28, 2014, 12:54:33 PM »

But the dress code is one thing that I would urge you not to get too creative with. As with my example of "rustic glam," you don't want to put your guests through the wringer trying to figure out what the heck you mean. (added:) Even if you do plan to give examples on the website.



I agree.

It's best to just not use those sorts of phrases anyway. It's really sort of controlling, plus confusing. It's tough enough sometimes.

If a guest is saying, "Hmmm, 'skirts & khakis' casual, or 'nice dress and blazer casual' ?" then what they should do is say, "I'd rather be overdress than under-" (or vice versa), and pick those clothes.

To wish for something more specific from your guests is overly controlling. This isn't a play or fashion show, or a club gathering.

jmarvellous

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #33 on: March 28, 2014, 02:32:32 PM »
For my wedding, we wanted people to dress the weekend equivalent of business-type clothes (so, not cocktail, not casual, very light fabric so they didn't boil to death). We struggled with what to say.

Since our wedding was at a Buddhist hall with a lawn reception, and nearly none of our guests had ever been to such a thing, we settled on, "Sunday best" with a disclaimer to be ready for some serious heat (all on the website; no mention on the invitation). People guessed perfectly (or asked me for more details, then did so).

We also said the 2nd part of the wedding was a "casual, backyard party." We didn't mention dress code, but there was time (1.5 hours) built in to change into something more comfortable, too. Our guests were 50/50 on changing clothes. I changed from my wedding dress and heels to a short lacy dress with flats, good for dancing; my husband took off his jacket and most men rolled up their sleeves.

Long story short: When in doubt, describe the nature of the event, rather than the dress code, in greater detail. People are great at context clues.

whatsanenigma

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #34 on: March 28, 2014, 02:43:56 PM »
I think that making a "dress code" clear is not just about the preferences of the HC or their desire to have everyone dress in a uniform fashion to "match" their wedding.  I think it's also about the comfort of the guests (in both the physical and emotional sense).

For me, anyway, it is very uncomfortable to be somewhere where I am either very over or very under dressed.  I think probably others feel the same way, like they are sticking out like a sore thumb in the crowd, even when the HC is gracious or honestly doesn't care what people have worn to the wedding.  It just feels painfully awkward, to be dressed very differently than everyone else, to me anyway.

So I think this idea of showing guests what to wear has the possibility of being a good thing.  Sure, it could go over the top, with being insulting or condescending (especially in the "don't" category) but in order to show general guidelines,  I think it could be useful, both to avoid people under dressing and over dressing (it would be really uncomfortable to show up in something more formal than the bride is wearing, for example).

And the "don't" category could be used for a lot of comic effect, I would think.  Rather than trying to give literal examples of what not to show up wearing,  the pictures could be of things obviously wrong, like pajamas or grass skirts.  Maybe a picture of someone wearing a lampshade on their head with the caption "DON'T wear this to the ceremony. (Save it for the reception.)" Stuff like that.

GlitterIsMyDrug

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #35 on: March 28, 2014, 03:10:22 PM »
And the "don't" category could be used for a lot of comic effect, I would think.  Rather than trying to give literal examples of what not to show up wearing,  the pictures could be of things obviously wrong, like pajamas or grass skirts.  Maybe a picture of someone wearing a lampshade on their head with the caption "DON'T wear this to the ceremony. (Save it for the reception.)" Stuff like that.

That's how I envisioned the "don't" section. Being kind of silly and fun. With maybe like super high heels with a caption like "Super cute, but you'll probably sink in the grass" for an outdoor wedding.

And I have worn heels to an outdoor wedding. Knowing it was outdoors. Know my heels would sink the grass. Somehow something didn't click in my brain to wear non-heeled shoes (wedges are awesome). I got stuck. In the grass. And I've done this a few times now.

Lynn2000

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #36 on: March 28, 2014, 03:29:12 PM »
I would keep it to the website, where people have to go looking for the information if they want it. And, I wouldn't make it essential information--guests should know that this will be a casual afternoon outdoor wedding (or whatever) just from reading the invitation and/or looking up the location. But, there's no reason one can't have some fun with the wedding website--they can be very dry and utilitarian sometimes, when I think a lot of people go to them hoping to learn something more about the wedding and the people in it.

So I would try to set it up so that some people can look at the invitation info and go, "Okay, I should wear X and Y, but not Z," and they're done. But then other people might go to the wedding website "for more information," and one tab would be about clothes, and they could see that and realize, "Oh, they're thinking X and Y, but not Z! I totally didn't pick up on that before."

Personally it probably wouldn't be very useful for me, though it might be fun for me to look at. I don't own a lot of different clothes, especially dressy clothes; I tend to wear about the same thing to all "nice" occasions, and sometimes I end up a little overdressed, other times a little underdressed. Never been invited to something that required ballgown-level clothes, though, fortunately! A description of the location and activities would probably be more useful to me in deciding what to wear, or rather deciding if I needed to modify my usual choice for "nice" occasions, since it's unlikely that any "what to wear" pictures would include things I happened to already own.
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Winterlight

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #37 on: March 29, 2014, 09:28:12 AM »
I'd find it pretty rude and potentially bridezillaish.
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LtPowers

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #38 on: March 31, 2014, 03:05:27 PM »
Since our wedding was at a Buddhist hall with a lawn reception, and nearly none of our guests had ever been to such a thing, we settled on, "Sunday best" with a disclaimer to be ready for some serious heat (all on the website; no mention on the invitation). People guessed perfectly (or asked me for more details, then did so).

So, essentially casual daytime wedding wear modified for the outdoor reception, which they probably were able to glean from the style of invitation, time of the ceremony, and location of the reception.  I'm not sure your "Sunday best" explanation was necessary.


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goldilocks

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #39 on: March 31, 2014, 03:40:57 PM »
I think it's fine to describe the event (wedding followed by BBQ in backyard!) and even suggest "afternoon casual".  You can even describe afternoon casuals (polos, khakis and boat shoes are fine!)

But the photos are too much.  If I truly don't know what afternoon casual is I can ask.   And remember it's just a suggestion.   I have relatives that would never show up in shorts in polos no matter what you said because ITS  A WEDDING and of course you wear pearls and heels to a wedding.




jmarvellous

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #40 on: March 31, 2014, 04:50:58 PM »
Since our wedding was at a Buddhist hall with a lawn reception, and nearly none of our guests had ever been to such a thing, we settled on, "Sunday best" with a disclaimer to be ready for some serious heat (all on the website; no mention on the invitation). People guessed perfectly (or asked me for more details, then did so).

So, essentially casual daytime wedding wear modified for the outdoor reception, which they probably were able to glean from the style of invitation, time of the ceremony, and location of the reception.  I'm not sure your "Sunday best" explanation was necessary.


Powers  &8^]

Considering that when we told people we were having a wedding at a Buddhist meditation hall, they assumed they would not be able to wear dresses or fitted pants because they'd have to sit on floor cushions, I thought a word or two was necessary.

Mental Magpie

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #41 on: March 31, 2014, 05:31:07 PM »
Since our wedding was at a Buddhist hall with a lawn reception, and nearly none of our guests had ever been to such a thing, we settled on, "Sunday best" with a disclaimer to be ready for some serious heat (all on the website; no mention on the invitation). People guessed perfectly (or asked me for more details, then did so).

So, essentially casual daytime wedding wear modified for the outdoor reception, which they probably were able to glean from the style of invitation, time of the ceremony, and location of the reception.  I'm not sure your "Sunday best" explanation was necessary.


Powers  &8^]

Considering that when we told people we were having a wedding at a Buddhist meditation hall, they assumed they would not be able to wear dresses or fitted pants because they'd have to sit on floor cushions, I thought a word or two was necessary.

I have to say, I wouldn't even know where to begin with choosing clothes for a Buddhist meditation hall.  I never would have been able to guess that from an invitation because I don't know the expectations of a Buddhist meditation hall.  I can guess what I would need to wear to a church wedding because I have experience with churches; I have none with anything Buddhist, really.  Not everyone's experience is the same as yours, and keeping that in mind when planning things is something I find incredibly important.
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TootsNYC

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #42 on: March 31, 2014, 06:38:15 PM »
I would assume that for a wedding at a Buddhist meditation hall, I'd wear whatever I'd wear at a church.

I'd assume that the bride & groom would make sure that chairs would be provided, since the guests wouldn't be meditating. I guess I'd be surprised either way.

And even if I thought that I might need to kneel or sit, then I'd just pick clothes that I could do that in. I wouldn't need to be told that I needn't bother. I don't, in point of fact, own any clothes that I couldn't do so in.

I might not be able to sit knees akimbo in a pencil skirt, but I wouldn't wear that to an afternoon wedding anyway.

Mental Magpie

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #43 on: March 31, 2014, 06:55:52 PM »
I would assume that for a wedding at a Buddhist meditation hall, I'd wear whatever I'd wear at a church.

I'd assume that the bride & groom would make sure that chairs would be provided, since the guests wouldn't be meditating. I guess I'd be surprised either way.

And even if I thought that I might need to kneel or sit, then I'd just pick clothes that I could do that in. I wouldn't need to be told that I needn't bother. I don't, in point of fact, own any clothes that I couldn't do so in.

I might not be able to sit knees akimbo in a pencil skirt, but I wouldn't wear that to an afternoon wedding anyway.

You know, I probably would, too, but I'd be so anxious that I was wrong or would be offending someone that until I saw that everyone else was dressed at the same level (or at least most of the guests) that I would spend far too much time going around touching everything with both hands (the compulsions).
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turnip

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Re: Showing guests what to wear
« Reply #44 on: March 31, 2014, 07:37:48 PM »
Fascinating!

Obviously mileage varies.   Personally, I'm only really looking at the dress code to know if there are hard-and-fast rules. So if I shouldn't wear heels due to ground conditions, or I should cover my shoulders due to religious conventions, or if you really want a formal black-tie wedding and you know what you mean by that, then I'll appreciate the heads up.

However I'm not a clothes horse and I don't care to shop, so I'm probably just going to wear my brown shift dress no matter what you write on the invite.  If you start showing me examples of what 'country casual' or 'nautical garb' or 'mid-afternoon tea' look like, then I'm probably going to decide that nothing in my wardrobe really fits and I'm not particularly inclined to go to an event where my apparel is going to be so strictly scrutinized.

So I think happy couples should be careful.  It's one think to say "dress for a casual outdoor event", it's another to make me feel like if I don't have colorful shorts and a bright floral shirt than I shouldn't bother to attend.