Which dress should I wear to a wedding?
September 23, 2011 7:46 PM   Subscribe

Could you please help me decide which dress to wear to a wedding tomorrow? My fashion sense is limited - pictures inside.

Please know that I don't ask the internet for advice on what to wear very often (never until now) and I only come to you because I really have no one to ask. I have limited fashion sense, and even fewer options to choose from. I have come up with these two outfits.

Outfit one, is an olive green/blue flowery thing with olive tights and olive wedges (yay, I can match!). It normally will cap both shoulders, I am just wearing it wrong here. Is it too weird or does it scream "street clothes"? Is it Olive overkill?

Outfit two, is a dull purple-y (eggplant?) dress with more (sort of) purple ruffles about the neck and waist. I have black tights and black booties. The booties may be weird because they have buttons up the side. This is my only black shoe option however. Here is a close-up of the shoes in case those first pictures were bad.

Both options have tights because it may be chilly towards evening and I'd rather not get cold. But I could probably do without if you think they look bad. . .

I'm not good enough friends with anyone going to the wedding to feel comfortable asking what to wear. The invite said "business casual" and it's outdoors in North Carolina and the food will be BBQ - probably pretty casual. But I don't know! Which outfit looks better for the circumstances?
posted by FairlyFarley to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (41 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I think I like two for a wedding. I know it is casual and I know it is BBQ, but one is fitting oddly on top (which you acknowledge), and looks a bit summery. Two looks good out of the box. Toss on a cardi and go.
posted by oflinkey at 7:51 PM on September 23, 2011

Both are nice, though I personally prefer Outfit Two. Wear whichever one you'd be least sad to get BBQ sauce on. And have a good time!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:51 PM on September 23, 2011

The second one seems much more wedding-y. The first one is maybe too casual, especially with those shoes.
posted by Rock Steady at 7:51 PM on September 23, 2011

Best answer: I say the second. Somehow, the first stands out as a bit 'odd'. It's pretty in a quaint way to my eyes. Maybe because the print seems outdated and the style is romantic? I'm not sure why. Now, there is nothing, nothing, nothing wrong with that. But at a wedding, I think the appropriate thing is to blend in; only the bride and groom are to stand out.

I think you look lovely in both.
posted by kitcat at 7:52 PM on September 23, 2011

Both look great, but I vote for Outfit one for an outdoor wedding. (Also, I think "business casual" is a weird thing to put on a wedding invitation.)
posted by trip and a half at 7:53 PM on September 23, 2011

Definitely #2, but both are cute and you have nice taste. And the tights are super, so wear 'em.
posted by BlahLaLa at 7:53 PM on September 23, 2011 [4 favorites]

Number two, the purple dress, definitely. One, it is a super pretty dress that you look great in, and two, EVERYTHING is fancier in the South. I once showed up at an outdoor BBQ in nice jeans and a sweater only to find that every other lady was wearing a dress and the men were in sport coats.
posted by Snarl Furillo at 7:53 PM on September 23, 2011

Best answer: I'd rather not get cold.
Then the answer is whichever outfit you can gracefully match with a wrap or jacket. Number Two is preferable, but you'll need a black/ deep purple upper warm thing (vocab!) to rock it for the whole affair.
posted by Cold Lurkey at 7:54 PM on September 23, 2011 [1 favorite]

Dress number TWO!!!
it is just a touch more dressy; the first looks too lightweight for the tights and shoes.
I think you'll feel more elegant in the second.
posted by calgirl at 8:02 PM on September 23, 2011

2! Do you have a black wrap/cardigan to help keep you warm?
posted by runningwithscissors at 8:06 PM on September 23, 2011

Best answer: Although I like the first one, it comes across a little too young and summery. It's on the short side, too, which isn't ideal for weddings.

Two is pretty and looks more wedding-appropriate. And definitely bring a cardigan or wrap; a simple black one will work nicely.
posted by Metroid Baby at 8:07 PM on September 23, 2011 [1 favorite]

Number two, in addition to the reasons above, the skirt is longer. Trust me, if it is at all breezy, you won't have to worry about flashing the entire wedding reception as much in dress #2.
posted by kellyblah at 8:08 PM on September 23, 2011

Two, with a black sweater. Those shoes are gorgeous!
posted by brina at 8:08 PM on September 23, 2011

Best answer: Hmmm. As the sole dissenter, I hereby withdraw my opinion and urge you to go with number two. It does look great, and apparently is more appropriate. (I still think you look really cute in the first one, though.)
posted by trip and a half at 8:11 PM on September 23, 2011

2! 1 is really cute I think but kind of funky for a wedding - 2 is more traditional and dressier.
posted by naoko at 8:21 PM on September 23, 2011

Best answer: The consensus is obviously for number two, and it does seem more wedding-y, and better for the Fall season as the other one is kind of summery.

But pleassse go out and wear outfit number one somewhere else later. It is so cute. I also really like both your pairs of shoes, really cute. You said you have a limited fashion sense, but it looks like you have good taste in clothes and accessories. Just wanted to point that out to you.
posted by chocolatemilkshakes at 8:23 PM on September 23, 2011 [2 favorites]

#2! Though honestly, the pictures show that both dresses look ridiculously good on you. I'd suggest saving that for a little less formal of an occasion, but definitely wearing it to something special, because it's a knockout, as well.
posted by xingcat at 8:40 PM on September 23, 2011

Best answer: Dude, ok. First of all, you're freaking adorable and I don't know what you're talking about with the "limited fashion sense."

I would actually do a mix of 1 and 2.

The second dress is more wedding-appropriate, but there's something that fundamentally reads, "I didn't know what to do with the bottom half, so I just threw this on" when I see opaque black hose and black shoes.

The bottom half of Number 1—the sheer tights and booties is very chic and nicely sexy. So is the dress in Number 2.

Try them together and report back.

(Also, seeing the close-up of the shoes for number 2, they'd totally work too, but I'd ditch opaque tights for serious winter, knee-high boots, and gray woolen dresses.)
posted by functionequalsform at 8:44 PM on September 23, 2011 [1 favorite]

I think 2 is a touch nicer and more special and wedding looking, so I'd agree with others and go with 2. That said, if all you had available was 1, you could certainly wear it without much likelihood of feeling wildly out of place.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:45 PM on September 23, 2011

I like #1, but maybe with a cardigan? That might help the length and protect against chill. Dress #2 is more wedding-y, but for an outdoor casual wedding #1 seems fine. Also, something about the black tights + black shoes feels too heavy in #2, though a black sweater might help balance it out. (The black boots are cute though).
posted by stoneandstar at 8:45 PM on September 23, 2011

I agree with functionequals form-- the bottom half of #1 seems so well coordinated, if you can translate that to #2 it'd be lovely!
posted by stoneandstar at 8:46 PM on September 23, 2011

Also, PS - rock the olive green bottom half and eggplant top half. Sounds like a salad, but would probably look a lot more interesting/adorable/thoughtfully-put-together than just black on the bottom.
posted by functionequalsform at 8:48 PM on September 23, 2011

Another vote for #2 dress with #1 leg+footwear.

Your fashion sense is not limited!
posted by michelle lightning at 9:09 PM on September 23, 2011 [2 favorites]

You look great in both, I'd go for #1 with a dark colored maybe knit overthing like a cardigan
posted by Blasdelb at 9:15 PM on September 23, 2011

You're cute! You'll look great regardless, but go with #2—WITH, as others have said, the shoes from #1.
posted by good day merlock at 9:16 PM on September 23, 2011

Response by poster: I tried "outfit two" with the olive leggings and boots from "outfit one" but they looked really dull together. Like, you couldn't really tell what was what color. . . they looked drab and grey together and in my opinion not good at all - I mean it was a little interesting and maybe "bold", but not really ideal. Thanks for the suggestion! I wanted it to work.
posted by FairlyFarley at 9:20 PM on September 23, 2011

First, I'm going to just object to any wedding that describes it's dress code as "business casual." Casual, fine. But "business"?

Number two is super cute and more wedding-ish but I think you're safe with either. Or a pair of Dockers and a golf shirt, apparently.
posted by otherwordlyglow at 9:28 PM on September 23, 2011 [1 favorite]

2 is more suitable for a wedding.
(1 is super cute too!)

business casual + outdoor BBQ = who are these people???
posted by Neekee at 9:36 PM on September 23, 2011 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Oh, no! Maybe "business casual" wasn't exactly how they worded it, but that was the impression I got. I can't remember exactly.
posted by FairlyFarley at 9:38 PM on September 23, 2011

voting outfit #2!
posted by jennstra at 10:14 PM on September 23, 2011

Best answer: #2 for a wedding. Looks a bit more formal and dressy. Outfit #1 would be adorable for a date.
posted by thinkingwoman at 10:28 PM on September 23, 2011

You look terrific in both pictures and either would be suitable for a wedding, particularly one that requested "business casual"dress. If it's outdoors, I think you will need some kind of a cardigan - you won't be nearly so pretty if you're covered in goosebumps and shivering!

There's certainly nothing wrong with your fashion sense.

Have fun - and catch the bouquet!
posted by aryma at 10:58 PM on September 23, 2011

Oh, no! Maybe "business casual" wasn't exactly how they worded it, but that was the impression I got. I can't remember exactly.

Smart casual maybe?
posted by missmagenta at 12:16 AM on September 24, 2011

Best answer: It's 2, and it's not close. 1 is for a date, and 2 is for something else.

One tiny hint, maybe some slightly dressier shoes? I've been on a bit of a 'match those shoes' kick recently though after watching the Emmy awards.

And maybe a matching cardigan/shawl/evening jacket draped over your shoulders would keep you warm. If you were going as my date, I'd offer you my jacket, even though it would come to your knees. And keep me cool.
posted by Sphinx at 12:26 AM on September 24, 2011

#2 but what IS that next to the fridge?
posted by superfish at 1:32 AM on September 24, 2011

Both are adorable, but in my opinion Outfit #1 is too casual (and a bit too short) for a wedding. Wear #2 with a wrap to keep you warm and you'll look great. Have fun!
posted by Space Kitty at 1:37 AM on September 24, 2011

Superfish: It looks to me like fermenting wort. Yum!

Also: Another vote for #2. Looks fabulous (and I actually like the shoes).
posted by divisjm at 3:46 AM on September 24, 2011

another for #2
posted by Nolechick11 at 7:21 AM on September 24, 2011

"#2 but what IS that next to the fridge?"

A dark ale of some kind, looks like its close to being ready to rack! Both outfits look great.
posted by Blasdelb at 8:37 AM on September 24, 2011

Best answer: Both are lovely, but the first is too short. Therefore, pick the second. Also pick the second pair of shoes.

Get a shawl or wrap to throw over your shoulders and upper arms during the ceremony, and for warmth at any time if needed.
posted by tel3path at 3:30 PM on September 24, 2011

If it were me and the yankee/East Coast weddings I'm used to attending these days, I'd wear the second option. People tend to really dress up for weddings here, in my opinion.

Then again, in my experience people are more casual in general, and gatherings tend to be much less sartorially formal, in the South. For example you mention "business casual" and barbecue. In that case, I'd wear the first option.

Then again then again, I feel like in this context it's better to be overdressed than underdressed. Basically you can't go too wrong with option #2 - at worst you'll be slightly more formally dressed than your peers and maybe get sauce on a fancy outfit.

Then again cubed, I'm facing a similar dilemma for a wedding I have to go to next weekend. Normally I'd bust out the little black dress, but it's on a farm, so????
posted by Sara C. at 3:56 PM on September 24, 2011

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