How to choose a dress for a wedding that you’ll actually wear again

Wedding Guest dress

Sure, everyone thinks of June as “wedding month,” but as a Denver wardrobe consultant, I’ve been talking to scores of women lately who have weddings to attend in August and September.

And sure we all have (or should have) some good basic dresses in our closets that will suffice for a wedding. But it’s hard to resist a new frock, something special for your friend or loved one’s special day.

On the other hand, I know it can be a mental or pocketbook struggle to justify a new dress when there are no other weddings or dressy events on your calendar.

Here are a few tips for how to buy that special dress and still wear it again no matter how full or empty your social calendar.

First, think of your lifestyle.

Do you work in an office and dress business or business casual most days? Or are you mostly a casual dresser and you live in jeans?

Next, take a look at your calendar for the next few months and scrutinize all of the various events (including dinners out and family gatherings) you could possibly wear a dress to.

Finally—here are your solutions!

Today I’m giving tips a casual lifestyle. Stay tuned for what to wear to a wedding if you also want to wear the dress to work.

When you rarely wear formal dresses and want to be able to wear your new frock more casually later, choose a fabric that is nice with interesting details but doesn’t read overly formal.

For example, the dress pictured is polyester chiffon, and the print further decreases the formality. The velvet trim and handkerchief hem add interest to make it party ready.

Other fabric choices might include georgette, high quality Ponte knit, cotton sateen, or jersey knit. Steer clear of anything too delicate.

Then for the other occasions on your calendar, dress it down with a jean jacket over it or jeans under it to make it feel more like you! You might try a military jacket (which would be super cute over the featured dress) or a maxi cardigan that could easily take your dress into fall.

For shoes, swap your party shoes for suede booties, wedge sandals or possibly even flats! Exchange your dressy jewelry for more sturdy pieces. Think thicker chains or even leather necklaces.

Here is an example in pictures to get you going:

dress worn casually

Your “wedding dress” for every day.

Wondering where to find great dresses? I like Nordstrom, Garbarini and Coquette (in Cherry Creek North, where they have fabulous sales,) and White House Black Market just to name a few stores.

As always, I advise getting an early start on your dress shopping and only buy a dress you absolutely love! After all, your point is to be able to wear your dress in many ways, so you get a good cost per wear!

Do you love dresses?

How do you “casualize” your dresses post-wedding?

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