There’s nothing quite like a semi-formal wedding in Vegas. The celebration of love, the union of two people, and the blend of both traditional norms and creative celebration have made the wedding chapels of this wonderful region worth celebrating.
In fact, it could be said that Vegas was among the first places to offer respectful and enjoyable wedding ceremonies that didn’t have to be tied to traditional normative expectations, provided the happy couples were willing to change them. As such, non-traditional weddings have spread far and wide and are now quite common worldwide.
However, nothing beats getting married in Vegas and having fun doing so, because we believe that weddings should be celebrated, and fun should be prioritized over unwanted pomp and circumstance.
If you’ve been invited to an excellent semi-formal wedding in Vegas, it may be that this is your first experience celebrating such a ceremony ‘outside of the box,’ as it were. As such, you may not be familiar with what to wear for such an occasion. You wish to be respectful, of course, not only for the happy couple but for all of the guests in attendance as well as the chapel itself. But you certainly don’t want to be overdressed or underdressed.
How do you strike that balance? Never fear, because we’re happy to walk you through some tips that will make this decision easier:
Is there a dress code?
It can’t hurt to ask the happy couple what kind of dress code they may be following. If they’re happy for you to come with smart casual attire, it might be that chinos or suit trousers and a comfortable, nice shirt with no tie is more than enough. A relatively simple dress or subdued gown could be a good idea, too.
Try to keep the adornments minimal, for instance wearing a tiara might be a fun accessory you wear from time to time, but it may look out of place and take away from the bride’s spotlight here. Usually, a good watch and some simple jewelry are more than enough.
Have you considered the venue itself?
It may be that your friends are more than happy to schedule an informal and quick ceremony, but it’s respectful to consider the wishes of the event space in addition to that. For instance, a church or synagogue may ask you to cover up more than you were expecting to, and so dressing respectfully is always a good idea.
A good rule of thumb is to dress how you might for an informal court proceeding, but with a little more color and fun. This can help you strike a nice balance and it also helps you look good without stealing anyone’s thunder.
When does the event take place?
Of course, depending on what time of year and day your friend’s wedding takes place, it may be cause to dress with a few more layers than you may have otherwise. If it’s in the peak of summer, then light clothing may work out well, and if the groom and bride are fine with it then a shorter dress or even 3/4 smart shorts could be applicable.
No matter what you wear, making sure these clothes are in good condition is essential. A brand new outfit, or dry cleaning your event clothes beforehand can help you present your best self when at the event, ready and willing to experience this wonderful ceremony and the after celebrations in style.
Have the happy couple shown you what they’ll be wearing?
If your friend, the groom, shows you his suit ahead of time, that can be a good rule of thumb for how to dress down ‘one level under it,’ so that you won’t show up the groom or make him look underdressed. It can’t hurt to ask for vague details, just so you know that when you show up, a nasty surprise isn’t in store.
After all, the last thing you want when selecting a smart casual outfit is to turn up on the day and realize you’re wearing the exact same colors and accessories as your friend. It sounds unlikely, but you’d be surprised how often this can happen in day-to-day life. It’s best to eschew that possibility now.
What dressing considerations should I avoid in a semi-formal wedding in Vegas?
There are a few hard and fast rules when it comes to what you wear at a wedding, and of course, this will often depend on what the wedding couple’s tastes are, and where the wedding is located, as discussed above.
However, there are also some considerations worth keeping in mind no matter what. Wearing white, for instance, is a big no-no, because it can take away from the bride. Even if the bride isn’t wearing white, it’s generally considered polite to reserve that color for them, especially because it’s seen as one of the more beautiful and special colors wedding dresses are designed around.
On top of that, try to veer away from the comical graphic designs or patterns on your clothing. Wearing that hilarious cartoon suit you bring out for special occasions could be a funny idea, but if you stand out from everyone else, then you’re just making the event about yourself. The idea is to blend in with the guests and to make sure that the lovely wedding couple has their time to shine.
Asking in advance is in no way a crime!
If you’re unsure, it’s always good to ask the bride, groom, and event space on what the reasonable standards of dress are, and even if a particular outfit is appropriate. Doing so shows that you’re respectful and wish to fit in. It also shows appreciation for being invited to the event.
Sure, the wedding couple may have a few decorative plans to make, or perhaps the wedding is rather impromptu, but it can’t hurt to ask them or some of the guests to get a better idea of what to wear.
From there, you can enjoy the excellent Vegas service in style.