Can You Wear White To A Wedding? We Bring You The New Wedding Etiquette!

21 December 2012 by

Guest post written by Lorna Weightman from Styleisle

Over the last two years I have attended fourteen weddings, which 100% qualifies me as a “professional” wedding guest. But as weddings begin to deviate from tradition, the etiquette becomes more difficult to dissect. Here, blogger Lorna Weightman weighs in with her rules…

wedding etiquette wedding etiquette


1. Wear white, or various hues/shades thereof

Blame Pippa Middleton. Ever since she started the Bridesmaids-in-white trend, it’s become a legitimate “thing” to wear a shade of white/cream etc as a guest. See: Lindsay Lohan wearing white as a guest at Kim Kardashians’ wedding. But I’m saying it’s time to stop this madness. And avoid any shade of white. After all, remember what happened to Pippa’s bum.  

2. Pass on your invitation

I once heard a story of a couple who could not attend a wedding and passed the invitation to their next door neighbours as if they were cinema tickets. If the invitation says your name, it’s for you, and not your mates. 

3. Be late

The only person allowed to be less than punctual at a wedding is the bride. The. End.

4. Overdo it on the Prosecco

Yes, yes… I know it’s tempting to guzzle Prosecco as if it were lemonade when you finally get through the service and into the reception. But hold back. At least ‘til the dinner. You’ll thank me the following morning.

5. Pretend that this is your opportunity to audition for X Factor

Entertainment doesn’t come cheap at weddings – bands are the most costly part. Try to remember the bride and groom have paid a lot for this 1980’s tribute band so perhaps this is not the time to storm the stage singing “Rock the Boat”.


1. Recycle your outfits a la Kate

Kate Middleton is the superstar of re-wearing past wedding outfits and I love her for it. Borrowing a hat to smarten-up a dress, adding ribbons or a bit of embellishment here or there, or mixing up your shoes… There are lots of ways to make that special dress you bought for Wedding A work for Wedding B too.  

2. RSVP promptly…

One recurring wedding story is where guests appear on the day, having been reticent with the RSVP. Most couples now include an email address with their invitation which is a quick and easy way to say, “Yes I want to come to the party”.

3. Dress up

Take cue from Lady Mary Charteris whose dress code for her wedding was clearly “fashion”. It worked. The guests who included Jamie Winstone and Florence Welch glammed it up – making great photos and an even better vibe. 

4. Eat before the ceremony

Wedding ceremonies tend to be around lunch time or shortly after; it can be a long wait from the reception, mandatory photo-taking right through to the sit down dinner. So carb-load to keep you going and stop your tummy rumbling during the ceremony. I once sat beside a guest who told me she always brought a packet of peanuts with her to weddings in case she got the munchies.

5. And finally, don’t forget a pair of flat shoes!

A wedding can be a long day. So try and get your hands on a pair of fold up shoes which will fit nicely in an evening bag and you can do a quick shoe-swap after the speeches. By then, no one will notice. And it’s better than being barefoot on a dancefloor that quickly becomes covered in booze and broken glass. Or is that just the weddings I’ve been to?



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