Trends in Formal Dinner Attire

The name is Bond … James Bond.

Oh wait, no it’s not, and most of us aren’t in the habit of wearing tuxedos to every dinner event/at bedtime/during boat chases. You get where we’re going here; it can be hard to tell what formal dinner attire to wear at events, and even harder to know what to say when requesting it for your wedding.

To that end, here’s a quick guide to formal attire trends and how they pertain to your special day.

Traditional Levels of Formal Attire

, says Vogue. These include:

  • White tie: This is a suit or tuxedo with a white bow tie for men, floor-length gown for women

  • Black tie: Same, but with black bow ties for men

  • Lounge suit: No tie restrictions and a formal gown for women, but not necessarily any length specifications (like semi-formal)

Once you leave the formal category, you have:

  • Cocktail: Shorter dresses for women, suit for men with or without a tie

  • “Smart” casual: No hard-and-fast rules, although men are still expected to wear pants and women are expected to adorn themselves as they would at a work function, for instance

So, are there any current trends muddying these waters, that you need to know about before The Big Day?

Current Formal Attire Trends

Fashions change, but basic expectations do not. For instance, while high slits and flipflops with suits might be acceptable in some venues, they don’t count as formal attire. On the other hand, there has been some loosening of the rules of formal attire lately. This includes:

  • Women can wear cocktail-length gowns or suits, so long as they match the general level of formality

  • “Black-tie optional” events encourage people to look very nice but apply less pressure, which is appreciated in wedding settings

  • In addition to men renting tuxes, women can now rent dresses … something for bridesmaids to keep in mind!

Choose a basic level of attire and put it on your invite so that none of your guests have to wonder what to wear. They'll thank you.

A Shining Setting, Formal Attire or Not

our huge setting offers dozens of different venues as well as a full-service wedding experience, from food to flowers to everything else. Get in touch by calling (972) 442-7800 to ask questions or book today!

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