A destination wedding at the beach straddles the line between vacation attire and free-spirited elegance. You don't want to show up in Bermuda shorts and a Hawaiian shirt (unless that's the couple's theme), but a thick chiffon gown doesn't feel appropriate either. What to do? When shopping for your next beach wedding guest look, make sure your pieces can pull double-duty as both festive party outfits and no-fuss vacation wear. Opt for breezy linen and cotton dresses that can be worn over a swimsuit at the pool or dressed up with kitten heels to the reception. Step it up with seaside-inspired accessories like shell earrings or a handbag. (The bag can hold sunblock and your sunglasses when you lounge by the pool post-wedding festivities.)
To show you what I mean, I've come up with five foolproof outfits that prove dressing for a beach wedding isn't hard, especially when you have the right pieces. Even better, you can stuff the looks into a carry-on for an arsenal of winning wedding guest ensembles. (After all, everyone knows packing for a warm-weather vacation/wedding offers more suitcase space when you don't have to include heavy wintery items.) The ensembles below pull double-duty in every sense of the word and will keep the compliments rolling in. You can now sit back and relax while daydreaming about sipping on that delicious mai tai. See? Dressing for beach weddings can be effortless.
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Sara Holzman is the Style Director at Marie Claire, covering runway trends and tracking down the latest finds to buy and wear. When she’s not writing about fashion, she pens about the best places to jet-off to. Over her six years with Marie Claire, Sara has reported on the ever-evolving world of fashion— covering both established and emerging designers within the industry. Sara has held fashion positions at Lucky and SELF Magazine and was a regular contributor to Equinox’s Furthermore website, where she wrote across their style, wellness, and travel verticals. She holds a degree in Journalism from the University of Missouri, Columbia, and currently resides in Manhattan. Follow her along at @sarajonewyork.
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