26 Wedding Guest Dresses That Might Score You More Compliments Than the Bride

I don’t know about you, but ever since pandemic restrictions began to lift, I’ve had a bustling social calendar filled with back-to-back weddings to attend. We’re still in peak wedding season (a wedding season that has gone into overdrive, mind you), which means you, like me, probably still have quite a few on the horizon before cold and gloomy weather sets in.

When it comes to choosing the perfect wedding guest dress, I always assess the vibe first. Is it a formal black-tie event, or is it more relaxed? Will the location permit wearing a cute minidress, or would a longer style be a better fit? Is it outdoors or indoors? Once I have my dress on lock, I can then move on to finding the right party shoes and bag to complete my look.

To make things easier for you and your packed nuptials schedule, I rounded up 26 no-fail dresses to wear to a wedding, for every occasion. From mini to maxi, black-tie to seaside appropriate, keep scrolling to find your perfect fit.

Short Dresses

short wedding guest dress

Photo:

@emmanuellek_

Short wedding guest dresses are always a win in my book. Not only are they much easier to dance in, but they also make a great case for wearing a stellar pair of party shoes. From fitted to poofy, long sleeve to strappy, and all that’s in between, your options for wedding-appropriate minidresses are pretty endless, no matter the vibe.

Long Dresses

long wedding guest dress

Photo:

@cassklatzkow

From midi to maxi, long dresses are a surefire way to look instantly polished for any wedding. No matter the occasion, there are plenty of styles to choose from—whether it’s a sleek slip dress or a flowing, floor-sweeping gown. Keep things interesting with strappy details, chic cutouts, or asymmetrical sleeves.

Black-Tie Dresses

black-tie wedding guest dress

Photo:

@carodaur

While what defines a dress as black-tie appropriate has become way more lax in recent years, I’m all for wearing an elegant gown when the opportunity arises. Something simple is always a safe option, or you can turn heads with more statement-making details, such as flowing batwing sleeves or ’70s-inspired halter cuts.

beachy wedding guest dress

Photo:

@bettinalooney

If you’ll be celebrating love beachside, whether locally or at a picturesque destination elsewhere, you’ll want to be aptly dressed for the occasion. Here, you can get away with wearing more relaxed styles—think breezy fabrics like cotton and linen, chic (but not too revealing) cutouts, and all the prints and bright colors your heart desires. Traditional silks, satins, and heavier materials might feel too hot for a day spent seaside, especially if you’ll be battling humidity, so opt for a style you can dance the night away in without getting too sweaty. Comfort is key!

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