Wedding Guest Attire | What to Wear to a Wedding

Invited to a wedding but not sure what to wear? We’ve got you covered with appropriate wedding guest attire and a few what-to-wear and what-not-to-wear tips

wedding guest attire

Theme: THE WEDDING JOB starring the Groom, The Best Man, and Groomsmen  – Directed by Mr. Kobi Koachman

Two (2) Saturdays ago was Felix’s wedding. Felix has been a very good friend of mine since we met 10 years ago at an IT Company where we were both employed as software developers and we’ve stayed in touch ever since then. Felix is still in the Information Technology industry, but me – I’m back with my first love. So it was just right for him to contact me to style him, his best man and groomsmen for his big day.

It was a 3 months project which was executed successfully to the delight of everyone who attended including the groom and bride’s family and friends.

But my joy wasn’t complete; this was only for one reason which I’m sure no one else noticed ‘cos everyone was carried away by the elegance of the bride & bridesmaids and the dapperness of the groom & groomsmen which spelled P.E.R.F.E.C.T.I.O.N.

wedding guest attire

Why was my joy not complete if you may ask? Here was the reason…

A particular man came dressed in Ivory Tuxedo with Black Pants, Bow Tie, Cummerbund, a patent leather black shoe and to crown it all, a Gold Rose Lapel Pin that looked exactly like the one I used to accessorize the groom’s Ivory tuxedo jacket.

When I first sighted the guest and his female partner who was also dressed in this beautiful cream lace gown, my first thought was, “Okay…maybe there is a second wedding taking place today”.

Only for me to find out a few minutes later, that they were just guests at my friend’s wedding. So why are you dressed like a groom and a bride? I murmured angrily as I took another close look at this strange couple.

Who are these people? Why were they trying to steal the whole show? Yeah I totally agree, this guy and his lady’s outfit looked lovely, but they haven’t dressed appropriately. This wasn’t their wedding, neither was it a black tie event, so they were dressed inappropriately for the wedding.

At that moment, it occurred to me that some people might not know the appropriate outfit to wear to a wedding. Except the wedding guest attire is specified in the invitation, deciding on what to wear could be a bit of struggle for some. So I promised myself that I was going to write about this and educate men on how to dress classy and appropriately as guests to a wedding. Here it is…

Wedding Guest Attire | A Guests Guide to the Perfect Outfit

What Not to Wear

1. Avoid all form of casual attires :

Casual attires just as the name implies, sends a very casual message and shouldn’t be worn to a wedding unless the wedding invitation specifically says the dress code is “casual attire”. Check out the link below for a Complete Dress Code Guide and see what forms a casual attire.

Read: A Complete Guide To Every Dress Code | What To Wear

2. Do not dress like the groom :

Remember, this day isn’t about you. Except it’s specified as the wedding guest attire or you are part of the wedding as one of the groomsmen, there is no need to keep people guessing if you are the groom or not.

3. Don’t dress entirely business formal to a wedding :

Avoid dressing like you are heading to the office – no briefcase or any form of man bag.

4. Do not wear distressed clothing :

Anything with holes, stains, rips or tears should be avoided when attending a wedding – even if it’s an intentional tear or rip.

5. Avoid Short-sleeve dress shirts :

Never wear this alone, unless you will be dressing it up with a suit jacket, the short-sleeve shirt, a bow tie and a pocket square.

6. Do not wear Shorts :

Avoid this as well.

7. Do not wear Sneakers :

Sneakers, Canvas or any other form of casual footwear shouldn’t be worn to a wedding.(which is a formal event). Unless you plan on rocking your sneakers with a suit – then this is acceptable.

8. Do not wear Flip-flops:

Flip flops are casual footwear and just not appropriate. Avoid wearing them or any form of rubber footwear to a wedding.

9. Wear white, off-white and black color with caution :

The wedding is the bride and groom’s day so you don’t want to take attention away from them like the guest I just talked about.

10. Do not wear distracting outfit :

Once again, this attempts to steal the show from the bride and groom. Stop trying to be the center of attention. It’s not your wedding, neither is it a fashion show, hence it’s not the time for electric blue suit, hot pink shirt, and yellow pants. Keep it cool, simple and classy.

Now that we’ve covered what not to wear. Let’s talk about What To Wear.

What to Wear:



Business casual attire is an appropriate wedding guest attire but you must know that business casual doesn’t mean dressing up your casual outfit, rather it means – dressing down from a suit. For stylish outfit ideas suitable as a wedding guest attire, check this link HERE.



wedding guest attire

READ: How to Wear Your Suit Without a Dress Shirt



wedding guest attire

You can wear casual sneakers with your tailored suit to a wedding, but please note there are a few things to consider before trying this out, these includes the Type of Sneakers, The color, the type of suit and the fit (most especially the pant length). For tips, check the link below.

READ: How to Wear Sneakers with your Suit


wedding guest attire

Wearing a DB Suit to a dressy event such as a wedding shows you are a style step above everyone else. It is the easiest way to show off a bit while still looking classy. Here is how to rock it appropriately – see link below.

ALSO READ: How to Wear a Double Breasted Suit



You can wear a sports coat, blazers or suit jacket to a wedding pairing it with the right pants and other complementing accessories such as pocket square, lapel pin, bracelets etc. For tips and ideas, check out the link below.

ALSO READ: Sports Coat Vs Blazers Vs Suit Jacket


wedding guest attire

Native attires are popular among stylish gentlemen in Africa and especially in Nigeria where I come from. It’s also an ideal choice for a wedding guest attire.

ALSO READ: Classic Native Attires – A Tailor’s Work Vs A Fashion Designer’s Work




Have you ever witnessed anyone dressed like a groom or bridesmaid to a wedding before? Please share your experience.

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Thank you so much for stopping by! Until next time…Have a very stylish day!


Yours in Style,

Kobi O. Mbagwu (Mr. Kobi)
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Mr. Kobi

I am Mr. Kobi, a professional style consultant, menswear blogger & entrepreneur who uses fashion to change people’s lives. My personal goal is to help gentlemen dress better, live well, do well and develop a unique personal style that matches with their lifestyle and goals. I believe that success can be built through style. I believe that fashion is a tool that can be used to change people’s lives positively. I strongly believe that if you dress well, you look good, and if you look good, you feel good and when you feel good, you worry less, and the less you worry the more you are able to stay motivated and focused in your goals pursuit and by so doing you are able to live a more fulfilling and successful life.