Style Rules For The Top Table: How To Dress Your Wedding Guests

Style and appearance is one of the many important aspects of any wedding.  Naturally, both the bride and groom want to look their best on their wedding day. However, the quest to look grand should not just stop there. Everyone who is attending your wedding should be motivated to look a million dollars when they turn up to see you and your partner exchange your vows.

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Style Rules For The Top Table: How To Dress Your Wedding Guests
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Unfortunately, weddings everywhere have long passed with tales of guests who turn up looking as if they have just stepped off a white-knuckle ride at Disneyland. The reality of wedding guest style is that, just like yourself and your partner, you have to take control and make sure that you get exactly what you want.

We have split this into two main sections. First, there is a general guests piece, followed by a specific look at some people who might be sitting at your top table. What are the tips you need to put into practice to ensure you get the right type of guests turning up at your ceremony?

Dressing Your Guests

The most obvious way to achieve your goal here is to explicitly state a specific dress code on your invitations. If you have friends or family members that you know are not likely to follow what it says, then you need to contact them directly and ensure they are aware of your expectations. Whenever you apply a dress code to a wedding, most people will instantly think that you are going down the black tie route, and you might even be thinking the same thing. However, this does not always have to be the case.

Match Your Theme

Themed weddings are all the rage today and they are only set to get even more popular in the years to come. If you are having such an occasion, why should you and your partner be the only ones who are dressing the part? Whether you are having a vintage style wedding or something inspired by fairytales or a Disney film, you can encourage everyone to get involved. Certainly, you will find out whom your friends are if they do not want to attend dressed as a character from Star Wars!
How To Dress Your Wedding Guests
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Worth Remembering

Even if you do not have a specific theme for your occasion, sometimes it is worth telling guests about color schemes and the decorations you are going to use, so that they can dress accordingly. This is much more relaxed than imposing a dress code on them via the invitation, although you will end up with some people who look great and others who are not so inspirational.

Matching Females

Whether the bridesmaids, the maid of honor, and any other female involved in the wedding itself should wear matching outfits has long been a source for debate when it comes to modern weddings.
Of course, the bride will stand out in her dress, so there is nothing to worry about from that perspective. The rest, in all honesty, is down to your preferences. The best option is usually to go for a certain style, but not always have the same colors used. A color that makes one young woman look great might make another look and feel like a sack of spanners.

Matching Males

There are no such worries from a male perspective. The groom, best man or groomsmen, and other males involved all traditionally wear the same thing. Not having to tell the best man what to wear might come as something of a relief, as he can then concentrate on remembering to bring the tungsten rings to the wedding venue and writing a speech that is funny yet not at all offensive.

The Top Table

Finally, we come to anyone else who might be taking a seat at the top table. Commonly, everyone involved in the ceremony will be sitting there. However, we know that not every wedding is the same, and that there will definitely be some exceptions to the rule.
What might these be; who might you see sitting at the top table?
  • · Parents of the married couple traditionally take a seat here, whether or not they have been involved in the ceremony directly or not
  • · Other close family members, such as a sibling who did not want to be a bridesmaid or have a wider part to play
Thankfully, the rules these people need to abide to are straightforward enough.

The Golden Rule

All too often, family members see their presence at a wedding as sacrosanct. This can extend to observance of the dress code. Simply put, the family members who are sitting at your top table have to wear what the invitation for everyone else told them to wear. That is, unless you want your wedding reception to be filled with everyone saying, “They have not bothered; I wish I had not paid out just for the occasion, either.”

It is the least they can do to support you on your special day; ensure all of your family members make an extra effort to look brilliant.

Outfit Options

Once again, the options available for men are simple and straightforward enough. Dress codes aside, they will wear a formal suit and tie as they would on any similar occasion. Once again, the big debate comes with what the females should wear.

The mother of the bride or groom is usually best wearing a plain suit, although if a classy patterned one can be found, these are also acceptable. Depending on where in the world you are, it may also be custom for a hat to be worn, although this will be more to do with personal preference than anything else.

For younger female family members, it is quite simple; they have to look as good as possible without appearing to upstage the bride in any way. Ideally, she should not upstage the bridesmaids, either; it just is not good form!

Getting the Perfect Guests

Sometimes, you have to be pushy to get your wedding guests to wear the things you want. However, they will usually go along with whatever you want, and realize the big part they have to play in your wedding day.
About the Author:

Adam is an experienced wedding planner who regularly advises his clients on potential dress code options as well as every other aspect of their big day; in his spare time, Adam is a keen runner and spends a lot of time running on the streets as well as in the gym.

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