I have had quite a lot of you ask me to do a post on what to wear to a spring wedding or event, and I thought I’d try and oblige so you can be the best-dressed guest. I have to confess that I find shopping for a fancy outfit the hardest of all. I think it’s because I hate the thought of spending money on something in the knowledge that I probably won’t get to wear it that often. I’ve lost count of the amount of things I’ve bought for a specific dressy occasion and then left lingering at the back of the wardrobe, only for me to go off them and then sell them on.
So, my first piece of advice would be to check the back of your wardrobe and try on some things you already have. You might be surprised to find you already have something suitable. Plus, being past season, there’s less chance of someone wearing the same thing as you. Awkward… Also, if you know what you’re looking for, try Vinted or eBay for second-hand items. For designer preloved, have a look at editsecondhand.
I would also advocate checking the rental sites. I know some of you will not want to spend £100 and have nothing permanent to show for it, but the prices on the rental sites often relate to the original price of the item so, yes, £2K high-end designer dresses are expensive to rent, but you can get a great Rixo or Ganni dress for a lot less. Try these sites:
- For all-round great rentals – HURR Collective, Hurrcollective.com
- For all types of occasion wear – MY WARDROBE HQ, Mywardrobehq.com
- For borrowing someone else’s wardrobe – By Rotation, Byrotation.com
- For excellent accessories – COCOON, Cocoon.club
- For more high-end designer dresses – Rotaro, Rotaro.co.uk
If you really want to own what you buy, here are some ideas. Ideally, I would suggest looking for something you can perhaps dress down for everyday wear. But maybe that’s just me: I don’t like saving things for best. What I would suggest spending your money on is the accessories. I have a pair of gold Gucci shoes that I bought in 2015 that have been to literally every dressy event I’ve been to since then. I even lent them to my friend to get married in. They have paid for themselves twice over and have many, many years left in them.
A really good place to start when looking for designer ‘out out’ outfits at a discount is THE OUTNET. Could there be any more ‘outs’ in that sentence? I’m pretty sure most of you are aware of this site. It’s a sister store to Net-A-Porter that sells past-season designer clothes at discounted prices. It’s not all massively high-end either, and they do a great range of Scandi brands. I’ve bought some excellent dresses from here. Most items are at least 50% off the original price, some up to 70%.
- Rhode Ester gathered floral-print crepe midi dress
- DVF Peggy layered ruched devoré-velvet mini dress
- Anya Hindmarch perforated metallic cracked-leather pouch
- Sandro quilted leather shoulder bag
- Ancient Greek Caryae metallic leather sandals
- Sam Edelman Lucia knotted suede sandals
FLORALS FOR SPRING
I mean… groundbreaking. But also, if it ain’t broke, then don’t fix it. I will admit to being a bit over the shapeless, tiered floral dress now. I’d say still good for holidays when you really will be rinsing the buffet, but for a wedding, christening or whichever spring/summer event you’re heading to this year, something a little fitted might be a more updated option. I particularly like the style of this one from Boden as it’s fitted across the chest but still flows nicely over the stomach area to hide any ‘issues’ there.
- & Other Stories printed side slit maxi dress
- M&S cotton tweed collarless jacket
- Gold gathered leather pouch bag
- Boden ruched bodice midi dress
- Astley Clarke gold plated tiny star band ring
- Air & Grace gold metallic block heel sandals
If florals are not your bag, why not look at some spots? I don’t know what it is about a spotty dress, I just feel it can be a timeless, classy option when it comes to almost any event. Maybe it’s the throwback to Julia Roberts at the polo in Pretty Woman that gives me that idea. Big mistake… huge.
- Finery London polkadot collared midi tea dress
- Ganni ruffled polka dot chiffon midi dress
- Apatchy London small leather phone bag
- Gucci mid heel horsebit pumps
- Moi London velvet Mary Jane flats
I think if I were going to a dressy event in the next two months, I’d opt for a suit. Mainly because if you’re going to go out and spend money on an outfit, you get more bang for your buck if you buy something you can wear again. ME + EM do this look so well. Wear the blazer with your jeans and trainers. Wear the trousers with a T‑shirt and sandals. Wear the whole thing together when you need to be smart. It’s basically a capsule wardrobe in itself. Sort of.
- & Other Stories relaxed bow neck blouse
- Rachel Jackson fan hoop earrings
- ME + EM textured weave boyfriend blazer
- ME + EM textured weave tailored man pants
- Grenson Nina tumbled leather loafers
SUPER COMFY SEPARATES
For when you want to go to the party but you also want to pretty much wear your pyjamas. Personally, I love this look. There was a lady at the last wedding I went to who was basically wearing silk PJs and she looked amazing. And, as with the suit option, these can be worn again with other things and dressed down with trainers or flat sandals.
- Sleeper Rumba line lounge suit (use code KATE15 for 15% off)
- COS oversized satin striped shirt
- The Drop Avalon small tote bag
- COS straight leg satin stripe trousers
- Ganni leopard print beaded pouch bag
- Ganni leopard print mules
- Monki block heel strappy sandals
A LITTLE BIT OF LACE
Finally, how about a little bit of lace? Obviously don’t go for a full-length white number – that may not get the best reception from the bride. But I do think you can wear black to a wedding, so long as you add a splash of sparkle with your accessories and your winning smile…
- Whistles broderie cutwork poplin midi dress
- Kenneth Jay Lane gold plated chunky necklace
- Ted Baker oversized lace shirt dress
- Saint Laurent Gabi quilted leather cross body bag
- Zadig & Voltaire Sleepless sandals
- La Redoute plaited gold block heel sandals
I hope this helps a bit, as I said, dressing up is not exactly my forté, I am much for comfortable in denim. Next week I might do more of that.