What to Wear to a Summer Wedding

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I don’t know about you but I feel like between the spring and summer, I’m attending a wedding every other weekend. Suer, there are few things better than spending time with family and friends while indulging in such a special occasion, but figuring out what to wear to each event isn’t always the easiest.

Weddings can of course be a blast to choose an outfit for (who doesn’t love a good excuse to dress up?!) but they also require ample planning. The venue, dress code, and weather all come into play—but none of that shouldn’t stop you from looking and feeling your best. While everyone will really be looking at the bride and groom, that doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun with your own outfit.

To help you figure out what styles are appropriate, I’m rounding up exactly what to wear to a summer wedding. These picks suit a variety of venues (including a beach wedding!) as well as different attire needs, such as formal and casual summer wedding guest outfit ideas. Oh, and I’m also including some accessories I’m loving for this season as well!

What to Wear to a Summer Wedding

Dress Code

The good news is that most wedding invitations should note what the dress code and attire guidelines are, providing some parameters on what route you should go. If the invitation lacks this information, it can be tricky. If you’re stumped, consider checking the bride and groom’s wedding website for more details. And whenever in doubt, just know that it’s more than okay to reach out to the hosts and ask them what the venue and wedding calls for.

what to wear to a summer wedding

Formal Summer Wedding Outfit Ideas

Off-the-Shoulder or Strapless Dresses

I know some people dread dressing for formal or black tie weddings, but I personally find these occasions to be the most fun to choose a look for. It’s not uncommon to immediately think of long black dresses when you hear “formal attire,” but there are so many other options you could go with—one of them being an off-the-shoulder or strapless gown.

There’s something about an off-the-shoulder dress that feels so elevated and special. In the outfit below, I actually styled a silk top with a matching maxi skirt. The end result looks like a dress, but I love that I can easily mix and match these pieces in the future.

Another perk to strapless and off-the-shoulder styles is that they provide some breathing room, which is particularly handy when you’re attending an event in the heat. Plus, they give you some space to play with jewelry, so don’t be afraid to add a pretty necklace to level things up a bit more.

off the shoulder summer wedding guest outfit idea
navy blue off the shoulder wedding guest dress

Maxi Dresses

Of course you can’t go wrong with a simple maxi dress. Regardless of the style, the long length of maxi gowns creates a formal feel, so any you choose will likely fit the bill. My main piece of advice would be to keep fabric in mind—silk, chiffon, and satin varieties will have a more “fancy” look than cotton or linen picks.

Oh, and to get the most wear out of your dress, consider picking something in one solid color. These styles are also easier to accessorize and pair shoes with, so if you’re a more minimalist girly, I would go that route.

Pastel or Patterned Dresses

The summer season calls for more vibrant and fun colors and prints, and attending a wedding is the perfect excuse to wear them. Pastels are a no-brainer for both spring and summer, and I love how fresh and light they look. Go with something solid and understated or spruce things up with a less expected polka dot print (this is my exact dress.)

Light pinks, greens, purples, and blues are all fair game, and baby yellow is also having a major moment right now, so try leaning into that trend!

long silk polka dot wedding guest dress

Casual Summer Wedding Outfit Ideas

Floral Dresses

If I were to attend a casual summer wedding, my first thought would be to reach for a floral dress. I’d also pick something short since mini dresses offer a more laid-back feel. With that being said, midi dresses are also a great choice if that’s more your thing.

From high-neck styles to strapless and pleated dresses, you can really have fun with casual wedding attire. Play around with color and texture and don’t be afraid to step outside of your usual style selections.

short floral wedding guest dress

Midi Dresses

Just as maxi dresses are an ideal go-to for formal weddings, midi dresses are a fool-proof option for more casual events. One major perk to this type of dress is that it can be reworn for so many occasions, both casual and more upscale.

If you want to fancy things up a little, consider an asymmetrical dress or something with a cowl neck. Both offer a more polished look without being over the top. Otherwise, spaghetti strap and tank style dresses will do the trick!

Silk Dresses

I’d argue that silk dresses of any style could work for both formal and casual weddings, but it’s really up to your discretion and how you feel. The A-line gown I’m wearing below is a new favorite, and again, I truly think you could wear it to just about any wedding. It’s also simple enough to be worn for a nice dinner, scoring you the most wear possible from one piece.

Another find I’ve been swooning over is this pleated midi dress, which has the most fun detail and is easy to style up or down depending on the venue. Slip dresses also work, and I know they’re a closet staple that you’ll reach for year after year (so you’re always prepped for wedding season!)

midi silk wedding guest dress
midi silk and high neck wedding guest dress

Beach Wedding Outfit Ideas

Bright Colors

If there’s one wedding venue that calls for a fun outfit, it’s a beach wedding. Bright colors, fun prints, and more unique fits are all welcome at this type of event, but there are also some logistics to keep in mind…

When attending a beach wedding, be mindful of the conditions and plan your dress and shoe selections accordingly. Avoid any maxi dresses that touch or drag on the ground and steer clear of heels that might sink into the sand. Instead, opt for breezy and lightweight pieces (cotton is welcome here!) and flat sandals or kitten pumps.

Paisley, floral, and striped prints would be fun, but don’t limit yourself to just those options. There are lots of uniquely patterned dresses, like this green leaf option or this palm tree-inspired pick. Prefer something more simple? Try the orange dress I’m wearing below, which has a halter neckline and cute cut-out detailing.

orange wedding guest dress for beach wedding


While jumpsuits could work for any type of wedding, I think they’re especially fun to flaunt at a beachside event. One pro to jumpsuits is that they are soooo comfortable, and they also can found in tank and strapless options (keeping you cool on a hot day.) Pair any of the picks below with sandals or even wedges if you don’t have to walk on the sand.

Short Dresses

Beach weddings are the ideal place to wear your more casual dresses, and even some that you wear on a regular basis might do the trick. This is the time and the place to wear something you already have in your closet, but if you’re in need of a dress restock, these finds would all look cute long after you dance the night away.

short dress for beach wedding
beach wedding guest dress with red and white pattern

Accessories for a Summer Wedding

Looking for some fun summer wedding accessories? The little details can make your entire outfit look complete, not to mention they’re fun to incorporate with other outfits after the big day!

What are your favorite summer wedding guest outfit ideas? Let me know in the comment section below!

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