What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding - 23 Stylish Guest-of-outdoor-wedding Dress Ideas

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding
Getting the right dress will set you apart from the other guests. We’ve provided you with inspo to pick out a dress that’s beautiful, appropriate and one you can wear again. 

The best dress should be on the bride, obviously, but why can’t you have the best guest dress? You can. The following is a list of tips and tricks for you to get the right dress.

First, remember the photos. There will be lots of photos. Not only pictures from the wedding photographer, but all guests are carrying cameras on their phones, and you are sure to turn up on social media not long after the day is over, maybe even during the day. That means you need not just a dress you love, but one that is dance-floor and red-carpet ready, all day (and night) long.

When the invite says it’s an outdoor wedding, do not immediately think you can dress casually. The dress code may call for black tie or formal, even on a beach. It’s totally up to the couple. Pay attention to special requests on the invitation. From that you will know whether to get a cocktail length or a full-length dress or something in between. Any length can look chic. 

These days there are many different fabrics that classify as “dressy”. You’ll see chiffon and flowy, beaded and sparkly, metallic, stretchy or fitted. The choice is really yours.  There are styles that are made to be simple and sophisticated, where all you add is statement jewelry, a satin clutch and towering heels. Sometimes dress have skirts that are flouncy. They are not only flattering to all sizes and shapes, but they are made to swing on the dance floor and do they ever!

Special event dressing is most often created to accentuate your femininity with a step up in design. Some of the details you’ll see are embroidery, lace, metallics, cut-outs which are all on-trend this season. Color is something else you need to think about. What colors look good on you? What color is the wedding party wearing? Do you want to match, or do you want to wear something entirely different? Pastels are subtle, bights will stand out anywhere and black is always right.

Accessories matter too. Jewelry, shoes, a clutch, and you might need a light cover if you go with a dress with an open back, for example. Will your hair be up or down? If you plan in advance and know what accessories you already have and how you’ll wear your hair, that will help you smartly select a dress that enhances those styles.

Finally, you must make sure your dress is comfortable. Getting the right size is imperative, but the fabric will help too. Often you will be in this dress for hours and hours. If a dance floor is in your future, maybe a stretchy fabric should be in your selection. (Hint: look for spandex in the fabric makeup). Whatever your decision is on color, length, fabric and design… you can find it at Closet52. 

Before you start looking for the dress, think about the location. Is it in a backyard? Maybe it’s at an outdoor upscale venue overlooking a golf course or overlooking a marina. Is it in a park, in a rose garden or at a beach? The location will probably steer you in the direction of the dress. Also is it an early wedding and afternoon reception? Or will you be dancing well into the evening? .

We've put together 24 different dress ideas that are fashionable and appropriate.

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Ideas

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #1: Off Shoulder Floral Dress

The elasticized neckline makes this ideal for an outdoor wedding. Wear it off the shoulders (as shown) or pull it up for the wedding ceremony in a church or temple. The chiffon makes it lightweight and so perfect for the occasion. Pumps or heeled sandals finish the look beautifully. Florals are trend-right this season.

 

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-74692

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #2: A Jumpsuit with Palazzo Pants

If you want to skip the dress route, head for a jumpsuit. It’s really easy to wear and looks great at the same time. This one has a halter front with wide palazzo pants and side pockets! (Easy to stash your phone). In stretch jersey—you can move around freely. Sandals work with this jumpsuit, but if you are at a wedding in a park, for example, and the invite says casual… flat sandals or even funky sneakers are a cool finish. But make sure you read the invite.

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding - Dress Idea 2

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/jumpsuit-dr50760

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #3: A Floral Maxi Dress

Extremely feminine with beautiful trend-right blooms allover, this maxi is a perfect choice for a garden wedding. Designed with a pleated neckline which means no necklace is needed if you choose to go without it. The chiffon fabric is dreamy, lightweight and perfect for a summer wedding in a park or under a tent.

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 3

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb61282c 

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #4: A Dotted Knee Length Dress

Why not show up to the wedding in the color and the print of the season! This composed and sophisticated dress is begging for a wide-brimmed floppy hat, at least for the ceremony! But even without, wear an updo and the right heels and you are guaranteed to turn heads. This dress seems perfect for a garden or an outdoor golf club wedding.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-75332

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #5: Burnout Floral Dress with Back Bow

The color, so chic. The fabric is made of lined, burn-out florals which are delicate and gentile. But the style doesn’t stop there. A mock neck and a faux halter combine for a shoulder bearing front. The back bow adds drama. Not only will this look incredible in pictures, but it will also look even better on the dancefloor.

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 5

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-dr52391 

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #6: Cut-Out Flouncy Midi Dress

The biggest trend from the runways this season is cut-outs! Here, a respectful cut-out is perfect for this special day. It’s not too daring, not you won’t be showing to much skin, just the right amount. The fit-and-flare silhouette is ideal for you to twirl about the dancefloor, and the stretchy jersey fabric makes it all the more comfortable, while the midi length is super flattering.

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 6 

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-75284

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #7: Bow Neck Crepe Dress

This dress is all about the details. First the bow, tied on the side of the cowl neck means it can replace a necklace, if you choose. Accessorize with bold earrings and bangles.  Nude heels make all the difference by making your legs look even longer. This elegant design comes in additional colors and in Petites’ sizes.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 7

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb61887b

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb61887bp

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #8: Handkerchief Hem Midi Dress

This dress ups the glamour quotient at any wedding. Ideal for late afternoon nuptials and evening reception. The florals on a dark ground are moody and romantic. But there’s more: they’re outlined with cool gold foil detailing. The handkerchief hem is so sexy without revealing too much. It’s also in Petites’ sizes.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb66080

https://closet52.com/collections/petites/products/dress-rb66080p 

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #9: A-line Chiffon Dress

We have already stated how great chiffon is as a “fancy” fabric, perfect for a wedding or special occasion. Here is another option. The A-line silhouette is so comfortable, and the surprise bow at the back of the neck makes you look good coming or going. In bright red, it’s a chic statement-maker. Add nude heels to finish. This dress is also available in Plus Sizes.

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 9

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 9B

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb66432

https://closet52.com/collections/plus-size/products/dress-rb66432w

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #10: Flouncy Hi-Low Chiffon Dress

This delicate flouncy frock puts femininity ahead of all else. With a ruffled v-neckline and a hi-low hemline, this metallic dot dress is a treasure. Don’t want to go sleeveless? Flutter sleeves offer a bit of coverage. And we love the idea of metallic heels and clutch to complete the look.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 10

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-jj38407

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #11: Floral Print A-line Chiffon Dress

You’ll be the envy of the reception in this swingy A-line floral. So many options: it’s perfect at a garden, at a park, at the golf club or a beach wedding. The choice is only what shoes to wear and how will you do your hair. A bun or an updo would be perfect as this dress has a bow in back. The only accessories you’ll need are spectacular earrings and a bangle. It’s also in Petites’ sizes.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb62171a

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb62171ap

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #12: Cupcake-hem Celebration Dress

With a flirty cupcake-hem created by dozens of rosettes, this dress is everything! It’s pure flattery with a v-neckline and a slightly stretchy fit. Up close, you’ll see the fabric is made from an allover exquisite textured rose jacquard. Wow! It’s a beautifully well-made dress, and unique for the moment. Step into your highest heels for this big event. It’s also available in other colors.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 12

 https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-dr52447

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #13: Floral Print Flouncy Hem Dress

This dress is a stunner. Metallic jacquard florals are ultra-sophisticated on this ruffle hem dress. The subtle shine offers the right amount of glam for any evening wedding or special occasion. High heels: pumps or sandals with a matching clutch would be the perfect way to finish.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-dr52422

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #14: Tulip Hem Wrap Front Dress

What better place to wear a dress in the color of champagne than at a wedding! The ultra-feminine silhouette highlights your curves in the best way possible. The construction is so well-made with the wrap front design and pleats releasing from the waistband. The midi-length tulip hem certainly wouldn’t look out of place at a garden wedding. Keep your accessories neutral so as to not take away from the dress.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 14

 

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-dr52596

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #15: Cold Shoulder Lace Dress

This casual gauzy, lacy dress has beach wedding written all over it. Its versatility makes it a smart wardrobe choice as you can wear it to multiple places once the wedding is in your rear-view mirror. It’s A-line ensures comfort throughout the day. You can dress it up or down with a change of shoes, jewelry and hairdo. Reminder: beach wedding accessories should also include sunscreen, bug spray (if it’s a sunset start time) and a beautiful hat.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb61321c

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #16: Gold Metallic Wrap Front Dress

This dress is offers subtle glam and is oh-so-chic. The golden metallic hue makes it extra special and ideal for a wedding-guest dress or whenever you want to look great. It starts with that gorgeous wrap front… it’s incredibly feminine and continues to a perfectly fitted skirt with a gathered waistband. Contrasting strappy heels and clutch complete the look.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 16

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-dr52452

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #17: Floral Print Midi Dress

This dress offers everything you need or want in a guest-of-wedding frock. First, look at it… it’s stunning. A double floral print really stands out this season. Second, it has stretch, which is exactly what you need for a long day to evening event. It has wide straps so there’s no worry about your bra. It’s got an A-line silhouette making it easy to wear and to dance. And it’s in a most flattering midi length. Wow. It’s also available in Petites’ sizes.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 17

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb64109w

https://closet52.com/collections/petites/products/dress-rb64109p

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #18: Metallic A-line Dress

You will love wearing this dress so much, you’ll look for more places to wear it. A perfect outdoor evening wedding/reception dress. You’ll look effortlessly chic whether you want to dance all night or socialize among your friends and family. The A-line is coveted because it’s comfortable and gives you room to move around. The back sash can be tied in a bow or left to dangle down your back. PS: there’s a keyhole beneath it. The glamour just doesn’t stop.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 18

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb63090aw

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #19: Black Dress with Pointelle Detailing

If you’re the type of woman that loves great style but wants to leave all the flash and dazzle to others when at weddings, then this dress is for you. This dress is simple, composed, stylish and versatile… which means you can wear it at many other occasions. The scalloped pointelle neckline and sleeves give it a subtle sophistication for a day or evening event.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding

 

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-jj37690w

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #20: Scallop Neck Jumpsuit

Sometimes you just feel like wearing pants to a party, even if it’s a wedding. This jumpsuit is the answer to an elegant evening affair. It’s super chic and playful. The scalloped crossover neckline is especially stylish. The cropped pants (with pockets, which is a big deal) let you show off your shoes. This jumpsuit is also available in Plus Sizes.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 20

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-75407w

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-75407

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #21: Cold Shoulder Watercolor Print Midi Dress

This is a showstopper! Created in a gorgeous chiffon, this special event dress comes alive with a painterly print. The cold-shoulder design shows just the right amount of skin, whether you are at a wedding with a view of a golf course, marina or the ocean. With shoulder straps (ideal with a bra), this generous cut has an asymmetrical midi hemline. Finish the look with nude heels to elongate your legs. Also available in Plus Sizes.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 21

 

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb66583

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-rb66583w

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #22: Floral Print Dress

The sophistication of this floral-print jersey dress is unparalleled. It’s a wedding-guest winner in textured stretch jersey. The dolman sleeves up the glamour quotient and make you stand out from others. You’ll love the sarong front to tie as tightly or loosely as you want. Nude chunky sandals reflect the supporting color of the dress beautifully.

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding

 

https://closet52.com/products/dress-rb66275

https://closet52.com/collections/petites/products/dress-rb66275p 

What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding Dress Idea #23: Yellow Keyhole Dress

Outshine the sun in this super flattering dress. Wear it to a beach wedding, a garden wedding or anytime you want to throw off some bright, positive energy. Designed with a  keyhole neckline and a playfully pleated hem for a little sass. It's a perfectly stylish investment. Contrasting heels and clutch make all the difference. Also available in another color. 

 What to Wear to an Outdoor Wedding – Dress Idea 23

https://closet52.com/collections/guest-of-wedding/products/dress-73957

 

To recap, when invited to an outdoor wedding, it’s okay to embrace cutout details, in front or back, and embrace necklines that you wouldn’t necessarily wear to the office. But avoid styles too revealing, like showing too much décolletage up top or high-cut leg slits. If the dress you want to wear is a bit too bare, find a blazer, shrug or cover-up to wear during the ceremony.

If your invite is for a beach wedding, it’s okay to wear a dress that’s a little more casual, as long as the dress code doesn’t mention “black tie.” Also, it might be smart to stick to dresses that are longer and more fitted, so the wind doesn’t play tricks and show your underthings to the crowd.

As for shoes at a beach event, leave the flip-flops at home, that’s true for backyard nuptials too. Other things to think about are where you’ll be standing, walking and dancing. Your favorite stiletto heels won’t be fun in the sand or grass. Instead, consider chunky sandals, if they highlight the dress, or choose a stylish wedge… which will easily set up your day/night for success.

We hope you find these inspirational tips useful in helping you pick out the perfect dress. The most important thing to get a dress you really love… and have a good time.

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