5 Things You Should Never Wear to a Wedding

Save it for your ex's funeral.

Bride, Photograph, Wedding dress, Bridal accessory, Dress, Gown, Veil, Bridal veil, Bridal clothing, Ceremony,
(Image credit: Fox 2000 Pictures)

Everybody likes a bit of drama (stop playing yourself), but a wedding is not the time nor the place to be extra—especially not with your outfit. Though we may kid about upstaging the bride with a killer Christopher Kane corsage dress or simply by being your sparkly, Daisy Buchanan-esque self, there are still a set of rather rigid fashion rules to which one must adhere. And here they are, with our most thorough annotations and sternest warnings.

White (You Know This)

Unless the happy couple are looking to emulate Solange and have specifically asked you to wear it while smiling expensively with sparklers, DON'T GO THERE. (Prints on white backgrounds are fine, though there better be limited white space showing, capiche?)

Sad-Sack Black

You: "Love is a sleight of hand your brain performs to trick you into thinking you're not alone until the day you die." Me: "Okay, sure, but keep that to yourself and out of your outfit, friend." While nearly everybody advises against black, this is 2017, and depending on your location/how shady your relatives are, I am extremely confident you could get away with non-funereal (major key alert) black—as in something lacy or with enough sheen to make it celebratory vs. gloomy. The realest major key is therefore knowing your audience and how much hot water they could potentially land you in because you wanted to be comfortable and urbane.

Standing, Suit, Shadow, Businessperson, White-collar worker, Gesture, Formal wear, Photography,

(Image credit: Columbia Pictures)

Pinchy Shoes

Are we no-fun guests who just sit at our assigned tables? Or are we dancers? A skyscraper heel might look great in photos, but it won't *feel* as nice by the time the Electric Slide comes on. (And you must cha-cha real smooth.) So compromise with a block heel (opens in new tab) (bonus: won't wreck the lawn) or a fancy flat (opens in new tab) (so chic in a retro-hostess type of way).

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Organism, Peach, Illustration, Drawing, Painting,

(Image credit: Courtesy, design by Betsy Farrell)

Groomsman/Bridesmaid-Catching Bait

In a time where everything a woman does must be sorted into Feminist or Not Feminist but can be both or neither at the same time, it is difficult to know what to do with your boobs. Here, we advise medium-to-high coverage, as if you were on a family beach vacation—even if your main objective is far less PG.

Anything You Don't Feel Comfortable In

As the saying goes, "If you have to ask, you should probably wear something else, even if you think it'll cramp your style, but it won't because you're more creative than that." In the end, on somebody else's wedding day, your outsides are little more a decorative vessel for as much love and support and soup tureens you can give to the people standing at the altar. So dress well, but not outlandishly. Like yourself, but slightly less so if your self is exhausting for other people. And NO WHITE unless your sister specifically asks you to.

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Chelsea Peng
Assistant Editor

Chelsea Peng is a writer and editor who was formerly the assistant editor at MarieClaire.com. She's also worked for The Strategist and Refinery29, and is a graduate of Northwestern University. On her tombstone, she would like a GIF of herself that's better than the one that already exists on the Internet and a free fro-yo machine. Besides frozen dairy products, she's into pirates, carbs, Balzac, and snacking so hard she has to go lie down.