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Article: Destination Wedding Attire: Dressing for Marriages Abroad


Destination Wedding Attire: Dressing for Marriages Abroad

Destination weddings can be stressful, as you have to do everything from packing to sorting things out, checking up on traveling details, and much more. In the midst, having to decide on a destination wedding attire is a challenging task, one that takes time and effort. Before choosing one, you need to look for things like climate, location, time, theme, and so on. But it can also be fun, as you get to experience a totally different environment. Here are some tips to help you find your destination wedding attire and dress for marriages abroad.

Wedding Attires for Warm Climates

Most wedding destinations have warm climates, which is why your conventional attires will work the best. In this case, you have more room to experiment with and express your personality and style. However, if you have no clue how to get dresses for destination weddings that are happening in hot climates, here are some tips from my side.

Natural Fabrics are the Best

Natural light fabrics are a great choice for hot and humid destinations, as they let the air pass and keep you sweat-free the entire time. Ideally, most people prefer wearing silk, cotton, linen, and mixed fabrics at summer weddings. But you also need to consider the time and location, as most weddings are near the beach, where there are a lot of wardrobe options.

Avoid Creasing Fabrics

In humid weather, natural fabrics get easily creased, ruining the entire dressing outfit for you. In this case, when you need to wear natural fabrics, go for the ones that are mixed with nylon and polyester, as they tend to crease a little less. Also, a pro tip: do not sit down before taking photos, as it can help you maintain the look in the photographs.

Be Practical

You need to be practical when attending a summer wedding, as the overpowering heat and humidity can ruin the entire experience for you. Despite being tempted by the glam look, it is better to go for neutral and light colors, as they go well with the sunlight if it is an outdoor day event. Also, go for lightweight fabrics like cotton and linen.

Be Prepared for Sweat

Sweat is a big issue in hot climates, and it can easily penetrate into the undermarks, making you look bad; when it is wedding season, it becomes your ultimate nightmare. And if you are wearing a tight-fitted bodice, it is better to apply sunblock and opt for underwear that doesn’t leave marks. Also, prefer choosing dress shields for underarms, so your dress won’t get stained during hot climates.

Keep Makeup Subtle

When you are in a hot and humid climate, makeup tends to sweat and grease a lot, which may result in your face looking oilier than it usually is. What’s better is that you keep the makeup subtle and opt for non-greasy formulas (even with sunscreen), so it lasts longer and looks good the entire day. Also, make sure it is dry before you put on the dress.

Fake Tanning

If you want to flaunt your fake tan in the warm climate, it is better to apply it a day before the wedding. This is because fresh tan or even tanning makeup keeps on sticking to clothes, and removing it from wedding clothes will only make matters worse. So, waiting a little bit might prove a blessing for you.

Go for Comfortable Shoes

Before getting ready, visit the wedding venue or ask someone to tell you about the place and the surface you will be walking on. For instance, wearing open sandals looks absolutely amazing on the beachy sand, but you may find it a bit hot. Make sure your selection of shoes has a proper balance between fashion and functionality.

Wedding Attires for Cool Climates

When it comes to cooler climates, the style needs some adaptations. It all comes down to layering; you have to start from layering and then do it in a way that reflects your personality. Here are some tips that can help you in choosing wedding attires for cold destinations.

Opt for Insulated Gowns

When it comes to cooler climates, you need to prioritize your health, which is why it is better to go for warm and insulated gowns. However, if you are attending an indoor event, do consider that you won’t be spending a lot of time in cold weather. Thus, it is better to go for something that is removable.

Prefer Thick Natural Fabrics

When it comes to cold weather, natural fabrics are the best, as they keep you warm and cozy the entire time. Preferable options should be velvet, thick velvet, silk velvet, satin, silk, and fine wool (better if it is double-layered). Also, you can always mix and match different fabrics for layering.

Always Be Prepared for Rain

Rain is always sudden and gets you off-guard, especially when you are attending an event outdoors in the cold. Hence, whatever everyone says, you take an umbrella with you. Similarly, if you already have a hint of rain, never wear satin, as it can easily stain when in contact with water and oil.

Give Extra Attention to Shoes

If the destination you are visiting for the wedding is closer and has snow, it is better that you opt for two pairs of shoes, one stylish and one to keep you warm. But if you are someone who doesn’t want to wear two pairs, it is better that you go for stylish snow boots that are warm for the outside environment. Though they are difficult to find, a little bit of market research may help you better.

Wedding Attires Options

Now that we have covered most rules about the destination wedding attire, let us discuss some options.

Formal Attire

  • White/ Black Tie: These outfits are great for destination weddings, as they make you look fancy and glamorous. Typically, it includes ethnic costumes, floor-length evening gowns, tailcoats, white button-up dress shirts, bowties or ties, and ceremonial gowns.
  • Beach Formals: Beach formals are fancy clothes that are subtle down using light fabrics and colors. Pastel linen and cotton is the best way to describe the comfortable beach formals. Some common examples include light button-up shirts, blazers, no tie, mid or floor-length dresses, and low heels (some women even prefer barefoot).

Semi-Formal Attire

  • Cocktail Dresses: These lie between the semi-formal and casuals. Most people like them better for outside occasions. Examples would be a suit and tie, a mid-length gown, or formal pantsuits.
  • Garden Outfits: Garden attires are toned-down ball gowns for outdoor settings. With these outfits, you are free to experiment with color, prints, and patterns. Typically, it includes above-the-knee or knee-length dresses and light-colored suits for men.

Casual Attire

  • Semi Casuals are what their name is. The casual outfits are those with which you can experiment with colors, patterns, lengths, and cuts. Examples would be khakis, slacks, flare dresses, and pantsuits.
  • Festive/ Themed Outfits: Themed outfits are where you express your creativity through dresses. But don’t go overboard with it. With these dresses, you can choose bold colors, prints, glitters, and rompers.


Q1: What do you wear to a wedding in Europe?

Well, it all comes down to the climate of the country you are visiting. It is a hot climate, and I prefer light and neutral tones with natural fabrics. For winter climates, thick velvet of fall colors would work best.

Q2: What do you wear to a wedding in Spain?

In Spain, most people prefer wearing subtle mid-length to full-length skirts with bow ties. However, you need to consider things like venue, time, and theme of the day to get dressed appropriately.

Q3: What do you wear to a beach wedding?

For beach weddings, flowy fabrics in pastel colors are the best choice. They go really well with the lighting, offer a scenery contrast, and look casual enough. That said, you are free to wear anything as long as you are satisfied.

Final Thoughts

In the end, choosing dresses for marriages abroad can be a nerve-wracking experience, especially when you are not following the trends. But it is not as difficult as it may seem; just focus on the research and rule out the impossibilities. I hope this guide has been helpful in deciding what and what not to wear to a wedding that is happening in another country.

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