How do you write a Dress Code on a Wedding Invitation? (2024)

Examples and Suggestions for Wording your Wedding Dress Code

Mentioning a dress code ensures your event stays as formal or as casual as you want, and it’s helpful for guests to know exactly what is expected of them for attire. Here you will find some helpful ideas for wording your Dress Code whether you’re hosting a formal or casual wedding.

Where to include your Dress Code

If you want to be specific about the dress code there are three main places you can do so:

Your Wedding Invitation

You can include your Dress Code on the lower left or right-hand corner of the invitation. Alternatively, the Dress Code can be placed at the bottom centre of the design.

A separate Information / Details card

If you are including a Details or Information card with other important information for your guests, use this to list your dress code as well as it keeps your invitation nice and simple.

Your Wedding Website

If you are already providing a wedding website for other details and important information for guests, use this space to also list your dress code.

Dress Codes

White Tie

White Tie or full evening dress is the most formal of all wedding dress codes. Men dress in long-tail tuxedos and the women wear full-length ball gowns.

Black Tie

Black Tie usually indicates an evening wedding where men wear tuxedos with black bow tie and women wear formal floor-length gowns. Black tie does not mean you must wear black. However, traditionally men would wear a bow tie and black tuxedo.

Formal or Black Tie Optional

These phrases mean that guests are encouraged to wear attire that fits a black tie dress code, but that this is optional. For men, they should wear a dark suit with a shirt and tie (if they don’t wish to wear a tuxedo). Women should wear a floor-length gown, knee-length co*cktail dress, a pantsuit, or dressy separates.

Lounge Suit or Semi-Formal

This indicates a step down in formality from Black tie and is suitable for a semi-formal daytime wedding. The wedding party will be in formal wedding attire, and it’s optional for all guests. For men, they should wear a classic suit or tux including a tie, and formal evening wear (floor-length dresses or evening pantsuits) for women.

Jacket & Tie

Similar to Lounge Suit or Semi-Formal, however Jacket & Tie indicates that it is acceptable for men to wear a sports jacket, suit jacket or even a smart blazer and chinos with a tie. Women should wear a co*cktail dress that is shorter than floor-length, a pantsuit, or dressy separates.

co*cktail attire

co*cktail attire isn’t overly formal and is encouraging guests to be dressed a step above smart casual. For women, an above-the-knee hem (or any length above floor length) is appropriate. For men, they can wear a suit (tie optional) or sports jacket and dress shirt.

Smart Casual

Smart casual means wedding guests are being asked to dress neatly, without being overly dressy – or overly casual. For men, dark denim, chinos or suit paints with a neat shirt is appropriate while women can wear a skirt or smart trousers.


You can format the writing of your dress code in a few ways, keeping in mind that the style should be consistent with the rest of your wording. The Dress code can be written with or without a colon or other mark appropriate to your design (for example a bullet or vertical bar). Examples include:
Dress Formal
Dress Code: Formal
Formal Attire (Black Tie Optional)

Looking for more helpful hints for your wedding invitations? Be sure to read our other articles:

Wedding Invitation Wording
Wording 'Adults Only' Wedding Invitations
Addressing your Wedding Invitations
Gift Card Wording
Thank You Card Wording

You can read more about wording for your stationery pieces as well as download PDF examples and suggestions on our page. Be sure to browse our Collection for examples and ideas as well.

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How do you write a Dress Code on a Wedding Invitation? (2024)


How do you write a Dress Code on a Wedding Invitation? ›

Answer this question by stating your dress code in a direct sentence ("The dress code for our wedding is…"). Following that, you can include a brief explanation with attire suggestions and specifics—for example, that your venue requires a jacket and tie or if the ceremony will take place on the beach.

How do you answer what is the dress code for a wedding? ›

3. What should I wear?
  1. “The wedding is casual, so please feel free to wear whatever you'd feel best in!”
  2. “The wedding is semi-formal, so we encourage you to wear co*cktail attire [for evening events] / Sunday best [for daytime events].”
  3. “The wedding is formal, so we encourage you to wear black tie attire.
Oct 2, 2019

How do you say dress code in a wedding invitation? ›

Answer this question by stating your dress code in a direct sentence ("The dress code for our wedding is…"). Following that, you can include a brief explanation with attire suggestions and specifics—for example, that your venue requires a jacket and tie or if the ceremony will take place on the beach.

How to describe a casual wedding dress code? ›

Casual. While casual dress code weddings allow you to wear a more relaxed outfit, remember that this is still a celebration, so shorts and flip-flops aren't advisable. Sundresses paired with sandals are the perfect attire for women who want to feel dressed up but still comfortable.

How do you write a dress code for an event invitation? ›

If you're going to use a non-traditional dress code, make sure it's clear, like “casual picnic attire”, and add a line that guests will thank you for: “The service will be held on grass. Please wear appropriate shoes.”

How do you tell guests what the dress code is? ›

Put It on the Invitation

The simplest way to tell your guests what they're expected to wear is to put a dress code in the invitation. There is a time-honored glossary of dress-code wording short enough to include on invitations, or on a card inserted with the invitation.

What is dress code answer? ›

: a set of rules about what clothing may and may not be worn at a school, office, restaurant, etc.

What is an example of a dress code announcement? ›

Our company's official dress code is [ Business/ Business Casual/ Smart Casual/ Casual. ] We may change our dress code in special cases. For example, we may require employees to wear semi-formal attire for an event. Then, both male and female employees should wear suits, ties, white shirts and appropriate shoes.

What is the casual dress code on an invitation? ›

The word casual is used to imply that the event isn't formal and that co*cktail or formal attire isn't necessary. The adjective accompanying the word casual— usually words like dress, business, or smart — is used to let the invitee know the exact degree on the thermometer of casualness they should aim for.

What is a better way to say dressy casual? ›

AKA: "Business casual," "trade-show chic," "town dress," "urban chic," "city dress." Come as you Are! Translation: Flexible but not sloppy—even a laid-back daytime happening is still a party. You can wear anything from jeans to a dress to a relaxed suit, like this camel ensemble on model and actress Carol Alt.

What is wedding dress code informal? ›

Informal or Casual Attire

As such, guests might opt for a pair of slacks or khakis, a light or colorful shirt, and a sports jacket or blazer (with or without a tie). Afternoon dresses, sundresses, dressy skirt and blouse combos, and seasonally-appropriate dress pants are all great options too.

How do you describe a casual dress code? ›

A casual dress code means that employees are permitted to dress in comfortable, informal clothing. Although the employees' comfort is a priority, certain standards are required—clothing must be appropriate and still professional.

How do you write a message for a dress code? ›

Please remember to dress in a manner that is respectful and appropriate for the office.” “Let's make sure our outfits are professional and don't contain any offensive language or imagery.” “It's important that everyone follows the dress code policy so that we can maintain a professional workplace.”

How do you communicate a dress code to your attendees? ›

One of the most important things to do when communicating the dress code for your event is to use clear and consistent terms that your guests can understand and follow. Avoid ambiguous or confusing phrases like "smart casual", "dressy casual", or "festive attire", which can mean different things to different people.

What is the dress code for a guest at a wedding? ›

1) Do Consider the Wedding Dress Code

Black Tie: floor length gowns, black ties, tuxedos. Formal: floor length gowns, tuxedos optional, black suits acceptable. Semi-Formal: below the knee dresses, dress shirts, slacks. Casual: sundresses, collared shirts, khakis.

What do you wear to a wedding when you don t know the dress code? ›

Your best bet is co*cktail attire. Sure, you might be overdressed if it ends up being a more relaxed affair, but you'll fit right in at a co*cktail attire party, and (with the right accessories) can easily dress up for something on the more formal side. Women should opt for a dress in a luxe fabric, such as silk.

What is the for marriage dress code? ›

Choose lightweight traditional attire for pre-wedding festivities, with men opting for kurtas and women having a range of options like salwar suits, skirt sets, sharara sets, crop top suits, or palazzo suits.

How do you ask what the dress code is for an event? ›

If the invitation does not state the dress code, you can ask the event organizer or other attendees what they plan to wear. This can help you avoid feeling over or underdressed at the event. After determining the dress code, choose appropriate attire that aligns with the occasion.

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