OK to wear black to a wedding?

We’re going to a friend’s afternoon wedding this weekend. Is it all right to wear some black to a wedding? The outfit I’m planning on wearing is a black top with a green and white print on it (trust me, it’s MUCH cuter than it sounds) and a black knee-length skirt, neutral coloured stockings, and black pumps.

I wasn’t sure if it was an old-fashioned idea that black is a no-no for weddings, or if it still is true.



I think black is alright for an afternoon/evening wedding, if there’s some color with it. The “no no” rule is making it look like you’re in mourning, IIRC.

I think you’re fine as well. I would cary a bright handbag (green to match the top maybe?) just to brighten things up a bit.

I would, however, avoid the black hat with the veil. :wink:

Of course it’s OK. I have worn black dresses to the last few weddings I have gone to.

I don’t think anyone cares much these days, especially if there is some color in the outfit. I’ve been to a couple of weddings where the bridesmaids wore black.

Our bridesmaids wore black. They looked fabulous.

Thanks … I feel so much better now …!

**Alice ** - I like your idea about the purse … now I have an excuse to go shopping again! :slight_smile:

Yeah. Essentially you can’t wear black outfits that make you look like you’re in mourning, or white outfits that make it look as though you are competing with the bride.

I’m gonna jump in and be the party pooper here. I think black is just wrong at a wedding. It is the color of mourning whether you’re wearing it from head to toe or just as one piece, like a skirt. I would probably be okay with a flowered print on a black background, but that’s as far as I’m willing to go.

Yeah, I’m an old fuddy-duddy. Sue me.

Being a guy, practically anything I say will bring down a hellious wrath upon me, so I’ll stop here and shut up. :wink:

Our bridesmaids wore black as well. I thought they looked awesome.

Absolutely fine! The thing to avoid is looking like it’s a funeral - so don’t wear a black hat and heavy veil, and you should be quite okay.

It’s also not normally considered appropriate to turn up in gothic-style black, but YMMV. I was at a mid-morning wedding of some unconventional friends last year and their guests turned up in everything from bright mediaeval ‘wench’ dresses to black gothwear to upmarket casual to evening dress.

The only thing missing was jeans - everyone had made an effort to ‘dress up’ but the individual interpretations on that word made for an interesting display. Not everyone’s taste, but it actually worked with that couple. :smiley:

I think a bit of black is okay, as long as there’s some color with it. I wouldn’t suggest all black unless it’s an evening wedding. Otherwise it just seems a bit inappropriate. I also think bridesmaids wearing black is a bit different from a guest wearing black. In the former situation, the bride has “pre-approved” the outfits. In the latter, you’re gambling a bit.

I know white is also a no-no, as is red (too flashy, showing up the bride).

I think black is fine for a wedding. Seems to me the “rule” about black began a long time ago when black was primarily linked to mourning clothes. Today it is one of the sharpest fashion statements around. Nothing looks much more sophisticated and “alive” than a black and white outfit…in which case I think even a contemporary (nothing heavy) black hat could be worn to an afternoon wedding. When you get dressed, look in the mirror…you’ll know if you look sharp or if you look like you are in mourning. There is a huge difference in those two interpretations of black clothing.

BTW, the outfit you describe sounds just fine. Have fun!


I’m with twickster.

No, it isn’t like the wedding police are going to come up to you and remove you quietly from the premises… but black is still the color of mourning. So festive colors at weddings, mourning colors at funerals, and mourning colors at weddings that are disasters in the making as a sign of disapproval.

I wouldn’t wear solid black to a wedding – but then, I am an etiquette bug. Frankly, very few people follow this rule anymore – as you can see from this thread. So, your outfit will be fine (especially since it has some color in it – really, I don’t think of a print with a black background as black at all).

The last time I checked, “black tie” meant black. So sometimes black is strongly encouraged.

Black tie means black for the men; it means long, dressy dresses for women.

Last wedding I went to, I wore black suit, black shirt & black tie - as did my best friend there, although I didn’t know that until we got dressed in the morning - his girlfriend had a simple black dress with a pink scarf.
The only comments we received was how sharp we looked. I don’t think its a bad call to do so, although i’d probably go in a different coloured shirt next wedding (brides sisters, in a few weeks)

People do wear black to weddings these days. People wear black everywhere. God knows why people are so afraid of color. :confused: