Part 1 of the Wedding Season series detailed dress options for men following different dress requirements. In this installment I would like to talk about interpreting appropriate dress for women, and next time touch on some etiquette issues.
As usual women have more options than men, although the description of the event is less consequential than the time/day it is held. Also, dress options for women are not as clearly as delineated as options for men. They fall into a range, and often can satisfy more than one purpose. Saturday night parties are the dressiest, followed by Sunday night, Friday night, and Saturday or Sunday afternoon. Weeknight is the least dressy. There is a large selection of sparkly, dressy dresses available now. One-shoulder looks and asymmetrical necklines add drama, while another big trend is lace. Luckily styles are available for every body type: belted looks in taffeta with full skirts ala Mad Men for pear shapes; sheath styles for hourglass figures; ruched or gathered looks for rectangle body types; and empire waist or longer flowy styles for apple types. Lengths also range from several inches above the knee to mid-calf. Choose yours based on your height, age, and the length of your legs in proportion to the body. Long gowns have lost traction recently in favor of short dresses, dressy pants and formal suits. The latter two options are more versatile, and easier to fit. While a dress has to fit well in multiple areas, if you find one you love, by by means buy it! You’ll be surprised how many times you will wear it for years to come. Alternatively dressy black slacks will work with multiple blouses or jackets and never go out of style.
Evening shoes exhibit the same trends as their less dressy daytime cousins: platforms, strappy booties, Mary Jane looks, sequins, lace and feathers.If you do choose something dramatic, however, keep the dress drama to a minimum.