Wedding Dress Codes and Style Guide

Wedding Guest Dress Code

Dress: Nordstrom (comes in 7 colors) | Shoes: Steve Madden (ON SALE)

Wedding season is in full force and has been the most requested topic by far from you ladies! This post idea has been in the works for quite some time and I’m hoping that it will serve as a comprehensive guide for all of your wedding attire needs for both brides and wedding guests. Everything from showers to bachelorette parties to the actual wedding weekend, I’ve sifted through thousands and thousands of dresses to find appropriate choices for each of these events. This is a long post but should answer all of your questions when it comes to what to wear to a wedding event whether it’s in a barn, on the beach or a church!

WEDDING DAY DRESS CODE:

BLACK TIE

Black tie and black tie optional weddings are going to be more “gala-like” than a cocktail attire wedding. Men pull out their tuxedos and women are decked out in floor length gowns. The “optional” part in black tie just means that you don’t have to wear a floor length gown if you do not wish to. But hey, after prom how many times do us girls get the chance to rock a gown? Have a little fun with it! For black tie optional, nicer midi dresses and jumpsuits are totally fine just remember to error on the dressier side (like this!). For black tie weddings, keep in mind that renting a ball gown is an excellent option! You don’t want to spend $200+ on a dress chances are you are never going to wear again especially since you know you’ll want something new for the next event! Rent The Runway is a service I have used several times now. They have thousands of designer and name brand dress options. The best part is that they send you two sizing options so that if your normal size doesn’t work, you have  a back up!

He should wear: A tuxedo or formal dark suit and tie

She should wear: A long evening dress or formal cocktail dress

 

COCKTAIL ATTIRE

From personal experience, 9 out of 10 weddings you are going to be invited to will be cocktail attire. If the invitation says “dressy casual”  or semi formal you might as well look at it as cocktail attire. Why there are 500 different ways to say cocktail attire I have no idea. It’s 2018 so people think they are really creative when honestly they are just really confusing.

Basically a cocktail dress is just a fancy term for a “nice” dress that is not a ball gown. If you are unsure of what would qualify as a cocktail dress think about it this way: a dress that you would feel overdressed wearing to a luncheon and underdressed wearing to a gala. While most cocktail dresses usually hit above the knee, midi and maxi dresses can also be worn for cocktail attire. Keep in mind a less formal approach to a longer length dress might be more appropriate as not to look you are going to a black tie wedding. Jumpsuits are certainly appropriate as well for cocktail attire but error on the side of a more formal jumpsuit (like this!). I did an entire post here on why I actually prefer to wear jumpsuits for weddings. Here is just one of several reasons that I gave in the post:

…while every other girl is trying to hike up her dress and awkwardly dance, you are 10 steps ahead of them ready to take on the limbo, cha cha slide, cotton-eyed joe and every other cliche wedding song like a total champ!

He should wear: A suit and tie

She should wear: A cocktail dress or jumpsuit

 

BEACHY FORMAL

Apparently this is becoming a thing guys! News to me too because I haven’t had the pleasure of having been invited to one. *Side note: all of my destination beach wedding friends can come out of hiding now*. The formal term is used relatively loosely here, mostly meaning that a dress below the knees would be best but is not required. You will want to dress for the elements (sun, sand and sweat) so flowy, sleeveless options are usually best.

He should wear: A summer suit with (no ties required), linen pants (or khakis) and sandals

She should wear: A formal sundress at knee length or below with sandals

CASUAL

Generally speaking, casual means anything goes but jeans, shorts and tank tops are probably not appropriate unless they’re specifically noted as acceptable. Keep in mind the time of day for the wedding. Daytime weddings are going to be a little less dressy than a night time wedding. Also note the type of venue. You probably don’t want to wear a nice cocktail dress to a barn wedding and a sundress might be too casual for a nice hotel. If you are still confused on what to wear, I promise this little dress won’t steer you wrong.

He should wear: Dress pants with a button-down shirt or polo

She should wear: A sundress or a skirt with a nice top

ACCESSORIES

No matter what type of wedding you attend, accessorizing is one in the same. 9 out of 10 times you will find me in these nude heels. They seriously go with any and every dress! Not to mention they are great for date night or a girls night out too. Speaking from experience, you honestly can’t go wrong with a pair of Steve Madden heels! Jewelry wise, invest in a couple of fun pairs of earrings that you can dress up or down. This way you can wear them beyond weddings! My gold hoops almost never leave my ears- weddings, date nights, work wear, you name it! If you buy one pair of earrings, make it these. Lastly, if you know you might be cold at the wedding, bring a wrap instead of a jacket as it will look a bit nicer!

WEDDING SHOWER

Attire for showers is completely dependent on location. For locations such as somebody’s house or an informal restaurant, a casual sundress, skirt or even jeans and a nice top will do! If the shower is at a nicer restaurant, church or formal venue, you will want to wear a sundress.

FOR THE BRIDE:

FOR THE GUEST:

REHEARSAL DINNER

Again attire is dependent on location. If the rehearsal is held at a church, you have to be mindful that it is a holy place. Some religions require that your shoulders be covered when inside of the church. I would not advise wearing a skirt or jeans unless the bride tells you this is okay to do so.

FOR THE BRIDE:

FOR THE GUEST:

BACHELORETTE PARTY

Location and what the bride wants you to wear is everything!

For the bride: Most brides tend to want to stick to wearing all white, after all nothing says bride like wearing all white! And if that fails, hopefully your friends also get you an obnoxious sash and penis themed everything to let the rest of the world know it is in fact your weekend.

For the guests: The bride will usually give details on dress code for the party but if not, it is a safe bet to wear black! Rompers are my favorite option when going out (although they aren’t the easiest to go to the bathroom in) because if you like to dance, they are the best option to bust a move in!

Lingerie: If not at the bachelorette, there is usually a lingerie party for the bride. I don’t care how old or mature you are, don’t tell me that lingerie is not awkward to buy. Save yourself the embarassment and buy it online. My go to places for relatively cheap and PG (I personally stay away from gifting anything PG-13 because I’m an inner 5 year old) lingerie are always Nordstrom Rack and Hautelook. They are always running lingerie sales. Brand wise: I like Free People and Sam Edelman lingerie. It is cute and sexy… if that is possible.

Wedding Style Guide: Dress Codes, Etiquette and FAQ
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Fruit Frenzy: Lemons and Watermelons

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Summer time fruit madness is in full effect! Lemons and watermelons are my current fruit crushes but you will find almost every fruit under the sun plastered on swimsuits, shorts, tank tops and everything else this season. I can’t stop wearing this $10 watermelon tee (size up!) under all of my overalls and own both of these $15 pool floats (here and here).

 

Watermelon Summer Trends
Lemon Summer Trends
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May Top Ten

**CLICK AN IMAGE TO SHOP THE ITEM DIRECTLY**

How are we already half way through the year?! Time is seriously flying and I can’t believe I am coming up on my one year “non-workiversary”. September will make an entire year that I have been blogging full time and it still blows my mind that I get to do something that I love every day.

Continuing on with the monthly top favorites, or the most purchased items by all of YOU, it is no surprise that we have some “repeat offenders”. Several of May’s top selling items were top sellers for previous months as well such as the Gucci belt dupe, Abercrombie overalls, and my tried and true Levi jeans that just so happen to be 50% off!

And as a reminder on how I obtain the monthly top ten data…

I use an affiliate program called rewardStyle. This means that if you click on any link- whether it be from my Instagram or blog- that takes you to a product page on a retailer’s site and rewardStyle is able to track that it originated from me. Some affiliate programs will pay the influencer for every click that they generate from their site. RewardStyle pays per purchase made. This means that if you click on one of my links and then end up purchasing that item, I will get a small commission (usually between 7-12%).  Many bloggers use this same program as part of their revenue source.

Because I use this service I do have access to data analytics. This means I can track what items are clicked on and purchased. I cannot see who clicked on them or what other items might have been purchased. For example, if you click on my Abercrombie shorts link and then purchase a swimsuit and a top in the same transaction, I will only be able to see that a purchase was made and that the shorts link is how you got to the retailer’s site.

These analytics are incredibly important to me because it allows me to see what all of you are liking. At the end of the day, this little blog business of mine is meant to be a resource for all of you so having the ability to track and measure each product’s success is invaluable. Coming from a Finance background, I tend to geek out over the analytics side of it as I find it incredibly intriguing what all of you are liking, buying and clicking on the most! It gets my gears turning because I genuinely want to bring you products that you are going to love and want to buy (at the right price point of course)!

Like I mentioned, this little blog is a full time business for me which means I am so appreciative when you choose to click and shop through my links – whether that be on Instagram or the blog. I have poured everything I have into being a resource for all of you so that hopefully it makes your life a little bit easier. I know that shopping through my links is an extra step for you, but please know it makes all the difference to me. It is how I am able to continue sharing great deals, try on sessions, and everything else. O and it allows me to pay my bills 🙂

All of that is to say, shopping through my links does not cost you anything additional (the item is the same price), the retailer will just pay me a small cut since I am the one that referred you. Please know I am so thankful when you choose to shop through my links and give me credit for helping you score a great find!

Now presenting… May Top Ten!


This jumpsuit was by far the number one seller! Perfect for any Spring/Summer events, especially for a more casual wedding attire. It has a detachable halter strap and pockets! Fits true to size but if you have a bigger chest I would size up.

This criss cross back tank and jeans both made the monthly top ten! The tank is now marked down to just $16 and makes the perfect Summer date night look. It runs true to size (wearing an XS). The jeans are currently 50% off making them just $45 and they also run true to size (wearing a 25).

This little top and shorts combo also made the top ten and probably got the most wear from my closet! I found myself reaching for this tank more than I thought that I would! I’ve worn it with jean shorts, white pants and even tied up with a skirt. It’s also under $25 and runs true to size (wearing a 25). The linen shorts come in 7 colors, are SO comfortable and are currently on sale for just $23.

Y’all must be buying entire outfits this month because again these overalls and watermelon tee were in the top ten! The watermelon tee is one of my favorite Summer staples from last year and is just $10! Make sure to size up. The overalls run true to size (wearing an XS) + come in 4 colors.

Y’all loved this swimsuit that is a designer dupe for this $300 one! I suggest sizing up as it does run a little small length wise.

This little tank has been on repeat! I own it in 5 out of the 7 colors and wear it almost daily. I love tucking or tying it up with shorts or wearing it under overalls. If you plan on drying it, size up!

These matching swimsuits were a HUGE hit and for good reason! They are relatively cheap and super cute. I love the knot detail. They run true to size (wearing an XS in both) but if you have boobs or a butt at all I would suggest sizing up.

And last but not least is the Gucci belt dupe that has been a top seller for 6 months now and is constantly going in and out of stock. Click here for the small Gucci belt dupe and here for the large one!

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Vegas in 48 Hours

Vegas in 48 Hours

Serious question: How can a hangover last longer than the actual trip? Apparently not everything that happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.

My baby sister turned 23 this past weekend and what better place than Las Vegas? Imagine The Hangover (movie) minus the strippers, tigers, and unexplained baby and you’ve got a good idea at what 48 hours in Vegas looks like. I lost my phone to the pool you see pictured above so the pictures from the weekend are few and far between because unfortunately some things that happen in Vegas actually do stay in Vegas.

HOTEL


We stayed at the MGM Grand Las Vegas mainly because it was cheap, relatively nice and housed two of the clubs that we wanted to attend (Wet Republic and Hakkasan). I’ve been to Las Vegas before and stayed at the Palazzo which is a bit nicer but not as conveniently located. Nonetheless everything is just an Uber away and honestly there are few places you can go wrong hotel wise in Vegas! My one piece of advice is to try to plan out what events you want to attend while you are there and if you can stay on sight or within walking distance to some of your events, it will cut down on Uber expenses.

POOL PARTIES/CONCERTS


Use this website to find out what concerts will be going on, where and how to buy tickets. We attended two pool parties and two nightclub concerts while we were there. Pool party wise, we saw Kygo at Encore Beach Club and Calvin Harris at Wet Republic. Concert wise, we saw The Chainsmokers at XS at Encore and Zedd at Hakkasan. If you are going with a group of girls, it is not unlikely to get approached by promoters to get into concerts for free. This is 100% the way to go if possible. They will give you their phone number and get your group in for free. Unfortunately if you are going with guys, this will not work.

SHOWS


While we did not go to any shows this trip, it is certainly a fun thing to do in Vegas! You can use this website to see what shows are in town and buy tickets. I have attended several Circque du Soleil shows and they never disappoint. If you are going with a group of girls, especially for a bachelorette party, you’ve got to experience Magic Mike in real life via Chippendales or Thunder From Down Under.

FOOD


This one is not my area of expertise so I will just leave a few places that my family can’t go to Vegas and not go to for dinner. First one being Giada’s and the second being Emerils. The Grand Lux is a great breakfast option. Most hotels will have a food court and restaurants inside so if you are looking for a convenient food option or late night snack, look no further.

OUTFITS


If you are planning to attend any pool parties the attire ranges all over the place. If you want to be extra, Las Vegas is definitely the place for it so don’t be afraid to go all out! Keep in mind that you will most likely be taking your clothes and shoes off and leaving them in some random place by the pool. I learned the hard way that stuff does get taken. So don’t wear your brand new $200 cover up (RIP cover up). Other than that you will certainly see girls wearing heels with their bikinis but honestly you can’t go wrong wearing a swimsuit, kimono and sandals. As far as going out, it’s Vegas! Meaning throw on your sexiest attire, red lips, and high heels! See below for some of my outfits.

Las Vegas Pool party attire

Las Vegas Nightclub

Las Vegas Pool party attire

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Memorial Day Sales 2018

Red white and blue Memorial Day sale outfits

Happy Memorial Day weekend friends! I hope you have something fun or relaxing planned for the holiday weekend. I am on the road again to Dallas to celebrate all weekend long. If you are still in need of a festive outfit, I styled 20 red, white and blue outfits for you here that you can easily recreate with something in your closet! I probably won’t be able to share as many sales on Instagram as I normally do so I wanted to round up the best sales here for you ladies! Happy shopping 🙂

Abercrombie // 40% OFF everything – all of my sale picks here

Anthropologie // Extra 25% OFF sale

Ann Taylor // 40% OFF purchase – Code: SOREADY

Banana Republic // 40% OFF everything – Code: BRSUMMER

Express // Everything up to 50% OFF

H&M // Up to 60% OFF + deals starting at $5

J.Crew // 40% OFF purchase – Code: GETAWAY – all of my sale picks here

J.Crew Factory // 50% OFF everything – Code: WINWIN – all of my sale picks here

LOFT // 40% OFF everything – Code: LONGWKND – all of my sale picks here

Old Navy // 50% OFF select items – all of my sale picks here

Nordstrom // Half Yearly Sale – Up to 40% OFF items – prices as marked – all of my sale picks here

Target // Up to 30% home & patio + 40% off Summer sandals

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