What to Wear to a Black-Tie Wedding
Is there anything more exciting than receiving a formal invitation to a black-tie wedding? If you’re anything like us, your eyes would have lingered on the word ‘black-tie’. How can you best express your love for the lovely couple through your own black-tie attire? This is a top-tier dress code just one ranking down from the Golden Globes.
If you’re attending a black-tie event, this is no time to economise. Go by this simple rule: if you've worn it to a club or a bar—it is not the dress. We’re going for long and luscious. Think mermaid trains, high splits, plunging necklines, diamond-encrusted purses, and up-dos. Here’s what to wear to a black-tie wedding.
Keep it on the D-low
Like we said, black-tie is all about the long, flowing ballgowns, so you should keep it all down low. We’re talking mermaid trains and maxi cuts. For those wanting to hit the dancefloor, midi cuts are also acceptable. So long as the dress ends below the knee, you’re good to go.
Don’t be deceived by the phrase ‘black-tie’. In fact, as far as the women’s dress code is concerned, the phrase is artifact. Whilst men know to sport black tuxedos adorned with, well, a black tie, this dress code is a woman’s cue to break out her most eye-catching dress—in any colour. Ladies, please note that black is a totally legit choice for black-tie, as shown below. It’s always nice to have options, though, right?!
One of the more literal (and stunning) interpretations of ‘black-tie’. Image: Alamour The Label
Pro-tip: if you’re attending a wedding, feel free to consider all shades under the sun—except for white, off-white, or cream. Not all brides will opt for a traditional dress, but as a general rule of thumb, it’s considered poor form to don white (or anything resembling white) to a wedding. Perhaps save that lacey, pearl-coloured gown for another night.
Bring the bling!
Do you have special Swarovski jewellery you’ve been dying to don? Maybe you’re more of a Tiffany’s girl. Whatever your preference happens to be, this is the setting to give them a burl. In the words of Rihanna, shine bright like a diamond with shimmering earrings, necklaces, and bracelets that bring out the best of your beautiful gown. Use the jewellery to offset or complement your colour scheme. Your makeup of choice should also reflect this intention.
Who says you have to stop there? Perhaps you’d like to add a Tiffany’s headpiece à la Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. You could even steal her beehive hairdo if you want. For events of black-tie calibre, partial or full updos are encouraged! If you’d rather let your hair hang loose, just ensure it’s styled to sharp perfection.
Maybe you’re feeling paralysed by the world of options at your fingertips. See below for a showcase of black-tie-appropriate dresses. (Pro-tip #2: if possible, take note of the bridesmaids’ colour scheme. Whilst matching the bridal party is not the cardinal sin of wearing white, you may still want to do your own thing rather than blend in too much.)
Images: Alamour The Label
On the left, we have the sparkly Valentina dress in wine red. Coupled with a pair of diamond-studded heels, this single-strapped, side-slitted ensemble is totally black-tie-appropriate. In the middle, we have the mermaid-trained Audrey dress in dusty pink. Single-toned and simple, this dress lets your figure do the talking (plus, we love the oversized floral earrings!). Finally, on the right, we have the Saniya dress in patterned emerald green. This bold choice goes great with that set of jewelled, silver earrings, as well as those neutral-hued heels. Any of these dresses and accessories would look great at a black-tie event.
We hope we’ve provided ample inspo for your black-tie wedding. Finding your perfect outfit is a matter of choosing the most flattering dress in your best colour—and finding complementary (or contrasting) accessories to match (or offset). It is a wedding, so remember to keep away from white shades, and possibly the colour of the bridal party. Most importantly, have fun finding your perfect fit—and at the wedding, of course! It may not be your day, but you can certainly give the bride a run for her money.