Dress Codes, Decoded! 20 Gorgeous Dresses to Wear to Any Type of Wedding, on Any Budget
Our Muses: Mandy Moore, Jennifer Lopez and Zoë Kravitz
The most formal dress code for weddings, white tie requires a floor length gown. It’s your chance to take a cue from celebrities on the red carpet and go glam. You can never go wrong with a black dress, but if you feel like wearing color, go for it (as long as the wedding theme allows)!
Needle & Thread
Buy It! Prism Ditsy Lace-Trimmed Embroidered Tulle Gown, $560; net-a-porter.com
Buy It! Maxson One-Shoulder Column Evening Gown, $378; neimanmarcus.com
Buy It! Navina Sequin Bird Dress, $290 (orig. $362); orchardmile.com
Buy It! V-Neck Trumpet Gown, $84; nordstrom.com
Our Muses: Malin Akerman, Mandy Moore and Hilary Swank
A tea length or floor length dress is the way to go for a black tie wedding. Play it up with patterns, embellishments, color, cut-outs or a fun silhouette but just remember to make sure it’s formal enough.
Buy It! Mckenzie Twist Strapless Polka-Dot Silk Chiffon Gown, $795; neimanmarcus.com
Buy It! Floral Ruffle Trumpet Gown, $289.95; lordandtaylor.com
Buy It! Freda Knotted Strapless Mermaid Gown, $195; nordstrom.com
Buy It! Tiered Floral Gown, $218; bloomingdales.com
BLACK TIE OPTIONAL
Our Muses: Lupita Nyong'o, Kim Kardashian and Leslie Mann
Slightly less formal than black tie, this allows guests the option of a long dress, formal cocktail dress or dressy separates.
Buy It! Penninah Dress, $690; revolve.com
Buy It! Pleated Dress, $54.99; hm.com
Buy It! Appliqué Asymmetric Dress, $169.99; mango.com
Buy It! Lovelle Dress, $378; shopbop.com
Our Muses: Naomi Watts, Sofia Vergara and Saoirse Ronan
Playful, fun dresses are a go for a “festive” dress code. Guests should feel free to experiment with patterns, prints, textures, and styles – and to pick pieces with color!
Buy It! Semi Couture Gown, $545; freepeople.com
Bec & Bridge
Buy It! Marvellous Mini Dress, $240; shopbop.com
Buy It! Balmwell Off-the-Shoulder Dress, $595; anthropologie.com
Buy It! Halter Wrap Dress, $218; revolve.com
Our Muses: Lea Michele, Nicole Richie and Amal Clooney
Usually, a dress code with the word “casual” in it indicates a beach or some kind of outdoor wedding with a low-key atmosphere. Sundresses and printed maxis are the perfect option for this type of wedding.
Buy It! Mei Lace-Up Dress, $475; anthropologie.com
Buy It! One Bali Nights Dress, $168; freepeople.com
Buy It! Metallic Print Pleated Blouson Gown, $95.99 (orig. $129); macys.com
Buy It! Tiered Gingham Gown, $178; jcrew.com