Whilst all eyes were on the Duke and Duchess of Sussex the weekend before last, their royal wedding guests were also in the spotlight, with Brits up and down the country discussing whether their outfit etiquette matched the strict dress code – from Amal Clooney’s stunning yellow Stella McCartney dress, to David Beckham’s sharp suit by Dior.
Deciding what to wear to a wedding is no easy job, especially when the wardrobe guidelines are as long as the bride and groom’s gift list. With the ever-increasing pressure to dress to impress this wedding season, CollectPlus has teamed up with fashion psychologist and Founder of Style Psychology, Kate Nightingale, to reveal the UK’s top ten ‘unspoken’ wedding rules, as well as uncovering how many of us have mistakenly (or sometimes purposefully) committed these ‘faux pas’ in the past.
The research by CollectPlus reveals shows that Brits are most likely to break wedding outfit etiquette by holding on the headwear, with almost 1 in 4 Brits (23%) shunning tradition and turning up to a wedding without a hat. Hot on the heels of hats is foolish footwear choices, as over 1 in 5 Brits (21%) admit they underestimated the height of the stilettos they choose to wear to a previous wedding, whilst 20% confess they took comfort to new levels, by wearing trainers to a wedding.
The UK’s Top Ten Unspoken Wedding Rules:
Wear a fascinator or hat – 23% of Brits admit turning up to a wedding without one
Choose appropriate footwear – 21% have opted for heels that were too high in the past, whilst 20% have worn trainers to a wedding
Do not wear jeans – 20% have ditched a suit for a casual look at a wedding
Avoid white – 19% have matched the bride at a ceremony they attended
Black is also off the cards – 18% have accidentally dressed more suitably for a funeral
Stay away from casual – 16% have previously worn shorts and a T-shirt to a wedding
Play it safe with fake tan – 16% admit a pre-wedding spray tan went wrong
Wear a tie – 14% have turned up to a wedding without one, much to the married couple’s dismay…
Don’t copy the bridesmaids – 12% of wedding guests have been asked if they are a bridesmaid, due to a misjudged outfit style
Wear waterproof mascara – 7% unwittingly went for the ‘teary panda’ look in the resulting wedding photos
“When it comes to wedding guest dress, the rules of outfit etiquette have certainly been relaxed over the decades. However, with the big day being such a special occasion for the bride and groom, adhering to some of these rules is a sign of respect to the couple and will ultimately help to reduce their levels of stress, which can often be at an all-time high in the days leading up to the ceremony,” commented Kate Nightingale, fashion psychologist and Founder of Style Psychology.
“Channelling this empathy towards the couple to ensure their wedding day is as perfect as possible in turn drives our willingness to conform to the rules, even if it means feeling a bit uncomfortable in a hat or a formal suit. Nevertheless, it’s still possible to bend the age-old rules and still look the part for a special occasion.”