What to wear to a wedding

I am going to a wedding in Texas over Memorial Day weekend. It’s an evening wedding, and I have a limited wardrobe and really no sense of style. My friends who are going say to wear black, but I know that’s wrong. I am older, however, and also realize that things change. Is black okay for a wedding? I know some people do it, and even put their bridesmaids in black, but just because some people do it doesn’t mean it’s right. I see people do things all the time that I wouldn’t say are right.

So my question - have things changed and is it okay, or for a nice Texas wedding should I go with something other than black? If I go with black, do the shoes have to be black? I’m buying a new dress either way!


Black is fine as long as it doesn’t look funereal. A classic “little black dress” for a fancy party is good. Accent it with some color or metallics for a nice look.

It really depends on how formal the event is. I have been to black tie weddings where very formal dresses were the norm, and other more casual events where a simple summer dress was appropriate. There’s nothing inherently wrong with black, it depends on the style and the formality of the event. Evening wedding sounds more formal, is it inside or outside? Usually outside events are more casual. Any way you can post pictures of the dress you intend to wear?

Black is okay, I guess, but if you’re “older” you can really rock those beautiful jewel-toned purples and blues. They look great in a classic black style, but give a lot of exciting color for an evening wedding.


I hope this works.

I am not a fashionista, but my understanding is that shoes should not match your dress anymore. This is perfect, actually, as it will keep your black dress from looking too funereal. Some bright red or jeweled tone heels would look awesome with a LBD.

And the kids these days tell me hose are out, out, out. Is that still true for an evening wedding, gals?
Ooh, if you’ve got the body to rock it, that dress is cuuuuuute!

I wouldn’t wear black to a wedding. Old fashioned that way, I guess. No red either. I don’t judge other people who do, though.

I also wouldn’t wear a hat that looks like something from Dr. Suess to a wedding, so clearly, I don’t know what I’m talking about.

Shoes no longer need to match.

Than you WhyNot! I had heard about the hose, and I have pasty white legs, so maybe fake tan. I’ve had skin cancer more than once so no tanning. Dangerosa, I have looked and looked for a colored dress, and can’t find much. I can’t wear spaghetti straps or anything with much of a v-neck because of past surgeries, and that really limits my selection.

That’s a beautiful dress, I would wear it with a very bright metallic shoe and some nice accessories to downplay the “depressing” nature of a black dress at a wedding. It should look very nice.

OK - again that caveat that I am NOT a fashionista, and any fashion advice I give is likely to be wrong, but…

Can you get away with colored tights with a dress like that to a wedding? Or does that dress it “down” too much?

Love, love, love that dress! Rock it! Fake tan the legs and you are good to go.

Ooh, I like that dress from Nordstrom! But I think I like the one in the “you might also like” section better : The one with the cap sleeve and square neckline. Either way, the old “no black at weddings” rule has gone the way of the dodo and pantihose. Add metallic accessories, and enjoy the festivities.

Edit: Darned auto-correct. “Dock” doesn’t equal “dodo!”

That neckline may not work for her – see post #8.

I agree that the linked dress looks fine – as in “she’s lookin’ fine!” Very smart to my eyes.

I’m pretty much a schlub, wear whatever the first thing I grab in my closet when leaving the house and don’t buy new clothes until my old ones are falling apart. I only have one opinion about fashion, and thats that woman shouldn’t wear black to weddings. I’ve been to a bunch of weddings last year, and at some of them half the woman showed up in black dresses. It just gives the whole thing a weird funeral vibe.

So apparently its acceptable, but FWIW, I don’t recommend it.

I wouldn’t wear black to a wedding. I just wouldn’t. It’s bad luck, I firmly believe this.

If you must, a wrap, a scarf, a jacket - something colorful - otherwise, no. No black.

Oh, missed that!

Also, Macys.com has a nice little “dress search” tool, wherein you can choose occasion, hemline, color, etc. and it offers suggestions. Not knowing the OP’s preferences/complexion/figure, that’s the best suggestion I can offer.

(But, if I were buying a dress for a wedding? For me? I love, love, love that square neckline with the cap sleeves!)

+1. That would be fantastic; I don’t see how anyone could think that would be anything but festive. <and awesome!>

To concur with the above, in this day and age–at least up here in Chicago (I don’t know how it’s perceived in Texas)–it’s perfectly commonplace and acceptable to wear black to a wedding, especially an evening reception. I go to many weddings every year (I’m in the industry) and black is as well represented as any other color, if not moreso. I’ve even seen mothers and grandmothers of the bride and/or groom wear black to a wedding.

I’m pasty white so I just flash my calves and cope (I’m another person who shouldn’t be tanning, due to a precancerous mole removed previously), but some good spray tan to cut the glare would be fine as well.

Shoes don’t have to match, but they can if you want - try to get some bright color elsewhere if you do match them, like in a clutch purse or chunky bracelet.

Since it’s an evening wedding I went off the assumption that it’s a tad more formal. Chicagoan here as well, but I assume the style isn’t so different there.

I imagine that Texas at the end of May is going to be hot. That may be a factor in your decision to wear black. Just sayin’. I didn’t see that you answered ladyfoxfyre’s question about whether it’s inside or outside, and if you’re spending any amount of time outside, you might want to rethink black.