What To Wear To A Fall Wedding

What To Wear To A Fall Wedding

Being a wedding guest can often seem like more work than it should be, especially when it comes to deciding what to wear to a fall wedding. First, you have to find a fall wedding guest dress that’s cute for pictures but will also keep you warm and be comfortable for sitting, eating, and dancing. As impossible as the task might seem, Emerald XO Ivy is here to help.

We have a collection of stylish dresses, shoes, and accessories for every type of fall wedding. Plus, they look good on all body types and work for all budgets. Let’s take a look at what you should wear for your bestie’s big day this fall.

Table of Contents

What to Wear to a Formal Fall Wedding

The first consideration you should make when choosing an outfit for a formal fall wedding is what kind of formal wedding it is. Here are some general attire guidelines for each type of formal wedding.

Black Tie

A black tie wedding is the most formal type of wedding. A general rule of thumb is that women should wear floor-length dresses, and men should wear tuxedos. Popular fall dress materials include satin and velvet. You can stick with a solid color or go bold with a statement pattern. Remember, it’s always better to dress up than to dress down when it comes to black tie weddings.

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Formal/Black Tie Optional

A formal wedding—also known as black tie optional—is less formal than a black tie wedding and more formal than a semi-formal wedding. Short dresses are appropriate, but maxi and midi dresses are preferred. You can even have fun with a dressy jumpsuit, pantsuit, or two-piece set. If you’re on the fence between more formal and less formal, err on the more formal side.


A semi-formal wedding is the least formal of the formal wedding types. Thus, the dress code is a bit more relaxed than black tie and black tie optional weddings. You can wear a long dress, short dress, or jumpsuit along with heels, wedges, flats, or booties—whatever you’re most comfortable and confident in.

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fall wedding table

Here are a few more factors to consider when choosing your fall wedding attire.

  • Venue: Will the events take place inside, outside, or a combination of both? If the wedding will be outside, we recommend wearing flats, booties, or block heels.
  • Dress style: Will a short or long dress be more appropriate and comfortable for this wedding?
  • Colors: Popular fall dress colors include black, brown, emerald, navy, maroon, plum, and gold, among others.
  • Fabrics: Opt for materials like velvet and satin rather than chiffon and linen. They’ll keep you warm while still being breathable.
  • Weather: Will the wedding take place in early fall, mid-fall, or late fall? The later the wedding date, the colder it is likely to be.

    What to Wear to a Casual Fall Wedding

    When it comes to casual fall weddings, you have the freedom to be more casual with your attire. Just be mindful of the venue when choosing your outfit. You wouldn’t want to wear boots to an afternoon garden wedding or stilettos to a mountain wedding.

    What if you’re attending a barn wedding in the fall? What should you wear then? You might choose a floral pattern dress with boots and a denim jacket. If you’re attending a wedding in the mountains, you might opt for a dressy jumpsuit with booties and a faux fur jacket.

    If the ceremony and/or reception is taking place outdoors, wear something that’s lightweight and can be layered with a jacket or coat. You’d rather add layers than take them away. Layering is key when it comes to planning your fall wardrobe, and events like weddings are no exception.

    casual fall wedding altar outside in the woods

    What to Wear Over Fall Wedding Guest Dresses

    It’s a good idea to carry a coat or jacket of some kind to the wedding in case you get chilly. After all, outerwear is not only practical but layering clothes for fall is also stylish. Here are some outerwear recommendations for different types of fall weddings.

    • Back tie and black tie optional: peacoat, blazer, faux fur coat
    • Semi-formal: peacoat, leather jacket, wrap
    • Casual: cardigan, leather jacket, denim jacket
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      How to Accessorize Fall Wedding Guest Attire

      Last but not least are the accessories. No wedding guest outfit is complete without them. Consider factors like seasonality and personal style when choosing everything from jewelry and shoes to bags and hair accessories. Our biggest piece of advice is to embrace the mindset that less is more, especially if you’re wearing a patterned outfit.

      • Shoes: Depending on the dress code, you might go for a pair of heels, flats, or booties.
      • Jewelry: Keep it classy with gold hoops and a gold bangle, or make a statement in a chunky necklace with tassel earrings.
      • Bags: Go with a brown crossbody purse for a casual wedding or a gold or black clutch for a formal wedding.

      At the end of the day, pick accessories that complement your outfit and flaunt your style.

      fall wedding guest attire

      Where to Buy Fall Wedding Guest Dresses

      Women like you shop for fall wedding outfits at Emerald XO Ivy because our clothes are stylish, flattering, and affordable. Our pieces are available in sizes S-3XL, and our size experts will help you find the perfect fit for your body type.

      Don’t let shopping for a fall wedding guest dress stress you out. Let us help you curate a look that you can feel cute, comfortable, and confident in all night long.

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