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How To Dress For A Black Tie Wedding

What Does Black Tie Dress Code Mean

How To Dress For A Black Tie Event ( Wedding, Prom, Etc.) ( How To Wear A Tuxedo)

Ironically, the birth of black tie in about 1885 signalled a loosening of ties, so to speak, among the well-to-do. Edward VII swapped his tailcoat for a blue silk smoking jacket with matching trousers, made by Henry Poole & Co of Savile Row. It provided the monarch with a more comfortable alternative to the formality of evening tails.

This black tie suit style was then adopted by members of the Tuxedo Club in New York, several of whom were Poole customers . It was Edward VIIs inspired loosening that eventually morphed into black tie, clinging on to some of the formal accoutrements of tails, such as the black tie shirts winged collar and the bow tie, which itself is a descendant of Beau Brummells early 19th-century cravat.

Read more: What to do when you dont read the dress code

What Black Tie Accessories Do You Need

Watch: Ideally you should have a dress watch reserved for these occasions. Look to Cartier, Jaeger-LeCoultre and Patek Philippe for the best.

Cufflinks: Obviously. Nothing fancy, the simpler the better.

Pocket square: Optional. Again, keep it simple. No personality pocket squares, please.

Hair: Off the face and cleaner than youd normally wear it . Need a little more guidance? Check out our guide to black tie hairstyles.

Aftershave: Of course, no gentleman is fully besuited without his eau de toilette of choice. Our guide of scents to wear at your formal event will see you right here.

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Read Also: Cheap Wedding Planning

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Can You Wear A Black Gown To A Black Tie Wedding Celebration

What to Wear to a Black Tie Wedding

Black is a no-fail gown shade for a black tie wedding celebration visitor gown, however gem tones, metallics as well as various other dark or dynamic colors can function well also. You also might desire to lease from a solution such as Lease the Path, because official dress can be expensive. Significant or high end precious jewelry is proper.

Can I wear a alcoholic drink gown to a black tie wedding celebration? You can just wear a alcoholic drink gown if its extremely official. It can drop over the knee, however it should not obtain much shorter than that for a black-tie wedding celebration. For this event, its not advised to reveal way too much skin. Rather, choose advanced alcoholic drink gowns made from abundant textile as well as great information.

Recommended Reading: How To Address Families On Wedding Invitations

What To Expect From A Black Tie Wedding

Traditionally, black tie weddings are an evening affair and start after 7 pm. Expect the wedding to be held at an elegant venue, like an ornate ballroom or a fabulous hotel, as to ensure the ambiance is luxurious and filled with opulent details. While the color palette is traditionally minimal the vibe will look like something out of a Hollywood extravaganza. Beautiful romantic candlelight, rich tablescapes, and glam linens and decor galore. Dont be surprised if theres large buildouts, draping, and customized floral walls. Anything that screams luxury belongs at a black tie wedding.

A cocktail hour is standard and you can expect a top-shelf bar and a signature drink for the couple. Wine will also be served in addition to champagne for toasts. The menu is usually highly stylized and elevated. Artisanal dishes are the norm at a black tie wedding, and you might even find yourself almost afraid to touch the food since it will be presented so beautifully!

When it comes to entertainment, dont be surprised if youre treated to something a little more upscale than a DJ or an online playlist. A live band or string quartet are popular choices for music. Of course, there will be dancingjust probably not the type you might expect at a more casual event. There might even be extravagant touches of entertainment like a fortune teller, dancers, or a firework display.

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What To Wear To A Black Tie Wedding

A black tie wedding doesn’t just mean wearing a tuxguests should pair it with a cummerbund, tuxedo shirt, bow tie and polished pair of dress shoes. If you plan on wearing a dress, shoes should be kept classic and simple, whether you choose a heeled sandal, closed-toe pump or flats. Still have some questions about what a black tie wedding really means for your wardrobe? We’ve got you. Check out our answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about black tie formal wear.

Black Tie Dinner Jacket

How to dress for a black tie event

What do you need to know when choosing a dinner jacket?

Traditionally, tuxedos were made of silk. But today youre more likely to find one in wool barathea or ultra-fine herringbone.

Black or dark blue are your best colour choices. In fact, originally, black tie wasnt black but midnight blue.

The reason? Black tends to look dusty under artificial light. So opting for dark blue marks you out as a fashion-literate guest.

Fancy something a little different? A velvet smoking jacket in dark blue, burgundy, or bottle green could lend your look a chic vintage edge. This navy tuxedo by Richard James is a luxurious combination of satin and velvet.

RICHARD JAMES

Read Also: How To Have A Wedding For 5000

Every Wedding Guest Dress Code Explained

Have you ever received a wedding invitation that left you completely clueless about the wedding guest dress code? Between “black-tie optional” and “semi-formal,” the language can be tricky to decipher.

“While many couples would like their guests to arrive in black-tie attire, the most common wedding dress code is formal attire,” says Alicia Mae, CEO of the New Jersey-based wedding planning company ILÈ Events.

Meet the Expert

Alicia Mae is a New Jersey-based wedding planner and the CEO of ILÈ Events. She has planned over 50 successful weddings and events.

Formal attire may be the most common, but there are plenty of other dress codes that may appear on a wedding invitation. Formal, semi-formal, and casual are a bit more ambiguous than, say, black-tie, and it can be difficult for guests to settle on the level of formality they want to go for.

One of the best ways to decide what to wear is to do some research on the venue. “As a guest, I would first think of the wedding location as the background that sets the tone,” says Mae. “A quick Google search of the venue can give you a feel of the wedding style, and the venue will have photos of past weddings that can inspire you.”

If you’re stressed out about style, we’ve got you covered with our handy guide. Here are the most common wedding guest dress codes explained so that you arrive appropriatelyand stylishlydressed for the celebration.

Brides

Adhere To Basic Black Tie Formal Wedding Etiquette Rules

If youve attended a wedding in the past, then you likely know that white are typically off limits. Wearing anything too attention-grabbing or something that could be seen as an attempt to upstage the bride is also frowned upon. You might be looking for the perfect reason to purchase that red, ruffled organza gown, but if its going to mean all eyes are on you instead of the bride, then your friends wedding might not be the place to show off your new formal wear. This also means erring on the conservative side when it comes to revealing black tie attire, particularly if the ceremony is in a place of worship.

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Formal Attire Or Black Tie Optional Dress Code

How to say it on your invitation: Formal Attire or Black Tie Optional

What it means: These two phrases are very common in todays weddings. They indicate that the wedding party will be in formal wedding attire, and it’s optional for all guests.

What to wear: We recommend a dark suit or tux for the men and formal evening wear for the women.

Black Tie Cocktail Dresses

Black Tie Wedding

For many black-tie events, particularly those that are less formal, a sophisticated cocktail dress can make an ideal outfit choice. This option is perfect for any ladies who feel uncomfortable in a full-length gown. Just make sure you choose the right kind of cocktail dress for the event youre attending. Selecting one thats structured or elegant and that sits at the knees is always a good idea. Also, to keep your look elevated, stick to black or rich, jewel-toned colours and finish your ensemble with sophisticated jewellery, accessories, and heels.

SHOP THE LOOK

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Is A Grey Suit Acceptable For Black Tie

A Light-Colored Suit Given the fact that black tie optional events as with standard black tie events take place in the evening, a light colored suit would look informal and inappropriate. You can get away with something like medium grey in a pinch but its best to stick to the dark colors we outlined previously.

Most Formal Black Tie Events Call For A Traditional Tuxedo

The most formal types of black-tie affairs include prestigious soirees such as state dinners, business awards, and formal evening weddings. In such circumstances, refined guests will display their respect for their hosts by choosing attire that meets the requirements of proper black tie. Better yet, they will opt for classic black tie, the highest possible standard for the dinner jacket.

Boldly patterned dinner jacket is another option

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If Youre Not Wearing A Black Suit Then Charcoal And Deep

What to wear to an optional black tie wedding. This probably seems like a particularly tricky request, but its pretty simple. Generally speaking, black tie optional has a pretty ambiguous meaning. It need not be black. you have options.

As such, it requires a sophisticated level of dressing. Im going to my future brother in laws wedding and there having a black tie optional wedding which i love because i love dressing up. Historically, the biggest difference between black tie optional and black tie is that tuxedo jackets are mandatory for the latter.

Its also likely that the couple has planned a fairly elegant wedding. Black tie optional is a dress code that requires guests to dress up, but it is slightly less formal than black tie. With a black tie optional dress code, chances are the wedding party the groom and groomsmen will be wearing tuxedos.

Wearing a black suit to a black tie optional event is an acceptable choice just so long as you dont try to make it look like an imitation tuxedo by pairing it with a black bow tie. Another etiquette rule guests are often unsure of is the type of jacket to wear with their dress pants. For a black tie optional wedding, it’s acceptable to swap out the tuxedo jacket for a structured suit jacket.

This is the next most formal wedding dress code and usually means the wedding is an evening event. Suitsupply dinner jacket and evening shirt. J.crew mercantile silk bow tie, $25, jcrew.com.

Black Tie Dress Etiquette

Wedding Style Guide: Black Tie Dress Codes

Apart from white tie attire, black tie is the most formal of all dress codes. As such, it requires a sophisticated level of dressing. For women, the code typically calls for a floor-length dress or gown. While cocktail dresses can be an appropriate option for black tie, long dresses tend to be a more elevated choice. Selecting a refined dress that features a simple and feminine silhouette and an elegant colour, such as black, will help you nail the etiquette of this dress code.

SHOP THE LOOK

Recommended Reading: How To Plan A Wedding Under 5000

What To Wear To An Optional Black Tie Wedding

A few months back, i shared that i was going to be attending a wedding this fall, and the requested dress code was black tie optional. of course that had me immediately tumbling down the rabbit hole searching for what to wear to a black tie optional wedding. However, if they dont, they should opt for a dark formal suit with a tie.

available for sale Black tie optional wedding, Summer

An Attempt To Please Everyone Benefits No

The reality, though, is that this dress code is basically the formal equivalent of business casual: an attempt to please everyone that ultimately benefits no-one. As Canadian fashion columnist Russell Smith explains in Mens Style, it is frequently a cop-out employed by insecure hosts:

It means that the planners of the party began by envisioning a glittering formal affair, with neatly groomed men in stark black and white as sober backdrops for the dramatic color and flashes of flesh of the women. And so they wrote Black Tie on the invitations and then immediately had doubts . . . What if we are excluding those without resources to own a dinner jacket? What if we are insulting the men with beards and Jethro Tull albums who dont believe in such elitist dress and who may refuse on principle to come to such a stuffy affair?

Sven Raphaels go-to suit when travelling

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