What Exactly Does A 'Beach Formal' Wedding Dress Code Mean?

BY Harper's BAZAAR Australia / Dec 13 2019 / 13:53 PM

A wedding planner reveals the dos and the don'ts

What Exactly Does A 'Beach Formal' Wedding Dress Code Mean?

When it comes to wedding dress codes, 'beach formal' is arguably one of the more difficult ones.

While 'black tie', 'cocktail' and 'smart casual' are somewhat easier to traverse, treading the paradoxical line between what you would normally wear to the beach and what you would don for a more formal affair can be tricky.

So, in order to make sense of the 'beach formal' dress code for women today, we consulted wedding planner Nina Ma'Belle Wiener of Nina Ma'Belle Weddings for all the dos, the dont's and everything in between.

THE 'BEACH FORMAL' WEDDING DRESS CODE, EXPLAINED


'Beach formal' suggests an elegant beach-side wedding—so dress to impress—but consider all of the elements, like sun, wind and sand, when determining your outfit choice," said Nina.

Need some guidance? Keep reading for all the details on how to do 'beach formal' in style.

[1]

What should you wear to a wedding with a 'beach formal' dress code?

@cultgaia

A MAXI OR MIDI DRESS

"A stunning midi dress or maxi dress in linen with a bold print or lighter colour will make for a comfortable and beautiful choice. Remember, if there is lots of traversing across the dunes from the ceremony to reception, you may want to avoid dresses that could be dragged through sand or dusty tracks," said Nina.

"Focus on natural fabrics and pops of colour that blend in with the beach environment. Opt for an outfit that welcomes that afternoon breeze instead of something skin-tight which may have you battling sweat marks in the sweltering sun.

[2]

What should you wear to a wedding with a 'beach formal' dress code?

@zimmermann

A BOLD PRINT

[3]

What should you wear to a wedding with a 'beach formal' dress code?

@bettinalooney

POPS OF COLOUR

[4]

Do you have to wear a dress? How should you coordinate separates?

@leoniehanne

JUMPSUITS, PALAZZO PANTS, A SKIRT SET OR A SHORT SUIT

"Absolutely not. Get creative but stay within the tasteful lines. Don't show too much skin, just because the word 'beach' is in the dress code, it does not invite barely there ensembles," said Nina.

"Think: breezy jumpsuits, linen palazzo pants, a skirt set or an understated short suit in a linen blend. These breezy options will most definitely fit the beach formal brief and have you looking oh-so glamorous."

[5]

What sort of shoes should you wear to a beach formal wedding?

@castaner

SANDALS, WEDGES OR ESPADRILLES

"Stick to fancy footwear that you can easily slip on and off," said Nina.

"Metallic sandals (think: Malone Souliers), warm wooden wedge mules (think: Chloé) or espadrilles (stick to Castañer) will ensure ease of wear, and it will most certainly fit in with the locale without fail."

[6]

What about handbags?

@cultgaia

A BAMBOO BAG

"For accessories play with the beach theme and dare to be different," Nina advised.

"For bags, pair your outfits with refreshing silhouettes like a fringed straw basket bag, a small bamboo bag, or a pearl-embellished clutch or mini bag.

"These alternatives will be a welcomed choice adding confidence and sophistication to any outfit choice.

[7]

What about handbags?

@by_krog

A STRAW BASKET BAG

[8]

What about handbags?

@cultgaia

A PEARL-EMBELLISHED CLUTCH

[9]

Any notes on jewellery?

@anitabjewelry

CONSIDER PEARLS

"For jewellery, elevate your coastal look with unique, baroque pearl drop earrings or a dramatic pearl choker," Nina recommended.

"These options will add elegance and sophistication, yet still play along with the theme."

[10]

Any notes on hair and makeup?

@shaninamshaik

NATURAL AND LIGHT

"Keep it natural. The sub-equatorial sun can be harsh and show every inch of powder and layer of foundation on your skin. Stick to hydrating primers, illuminating foundations, cream blushes and bronzed tones," Nina told BAZAAR.

"For your hair, depending on the length and weight, I would recommend keeping it off your shoulders to ensure you stay as cool as can be, while also avoiding any humidity which can turn the most perfect blow-wave into a frizzy hot mess."

[11]

Besides white, what should you avoid wearing to a beach formal wedding?

BLACK AND STILETTOS

"Avoid black. [It's] highly impractical in the blistering heat. And stilettos, which will have you sinking into quicksand before you hear 'I do'," said Nina.


From Harper's Bazaar Australia

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