What To Wear To A Wedding


Ever wondered how to pick the perfect OOTD, or what to wear to a wedding? Blogger Jessica Tham answers all of your Fashion FAQs in this column about all things fashion!


What To Wear To A Wedding

The wedding season is upon us and with it comes the #firstworldproblem of deciding what to wear. You don’t want to be underdressed, but if you’re too overdressed you might unintentionally outshine the bride…which we all know is #rude. We get Jessica Tham (@tippytapp) to give us some tips on the do’s and don’ts of wedding dress codes.

1. Wedding Dinner

Jessica Tham Wedding Dinner Outfit 1

Wedding dinners tend to be a more formal affair, so it’s better to go for darker colours and more luxe materials like silk or satin. In terms of hemline, a midi skirt is a safe bet but if you don’t have one, then a dressy knee-length dress should work fine. I mean, no one is going to fault you for wearing a shorter skirt, unless you rock up in a denim mini skirt or something you know?


If you’re not a fan of prints and loud colours, opt for a classic black dress with interesting details – like an off-shoulder detail that is both feminine and classy.


Jazz up your outfit with statement accessories and a structured bag or classic clutch. To complete the look, put on your favourite pair of killer pumps – because let’s face it, there are few occasions in Singapore where you get to rock a pair of 4-inch heels, and wedding dinners are one one of them.

Jessica-Tham-Wedding-Dinner-Outfit-2 Jessica-Tham-Wedding-Dinner-Outfit-3

2. Church Wedding/Lunch Reception

Although day weddings tend to be less formal than hotel wedding dinners, that’s not to say that you can rock up in a pair of jeans and call it a day. If the lunch reception is preceded by a church wedding, you might want to opt for something conservative – so yes, it’s probably best to save your bodycon dress for the after party. But you knew that already, didn’t you?


Since church weddings are usually in the daytime, pastel hues are a nice and appropriate option. If you’re afraid of looking washed out in lighter colours, accessorise your outfit for a hint of colour and texture.

Jessica-Tham-Wedding-Lunch-Outfit-5Jessica-Tham-Wedding-Lunch-Outfit-3Clothes in lighter colours can look a bit casual, so material is key. Go for a dress that has interesting textures – like a tulle skirt or delicate pleats. Pair your outfit with nude pumps and you should be good to go.

3. Outdoor Wedding

Despite Singapore’s unforgiving weather, outdoor weddings have become increasingly popular here (blame it on Pinterest). Some couples, we hear, even go one step further and have their weddings in air-conditioned “outdoor” areas, like the Flower Dome – so you get the garden atmosphere, without the heat and humidity. Ingenious.


Either way, outdoor weddings can be quite a gamble – you want to dress up, but the thought of sweating it out in the heat and humidity is kind of a wary prospect.

A statement skirt in a classic cut is a good way to balance comfort and style. Pair it with a simple top (or if you’re the sort that is afraid of getting tanned, a light long-sleeved shirt or top will work as well) and keep your hair and makeup simple. After all, why spend so much on a fancy hairdo when the humidity is going to ruin it anyway? #truth


Outdoor weddings are also a good excuse to wear brighter colours with fun details, because it’s not as conservative as a church wedding and not as formal as a wedding dinner.


To keep your outfit from looking too over-the-top, keep your accessories neutral and classic.


Dress Codes

Black Tie

Jessica Tham Black Tie(Source: tippytapp Instagram)

At first thought, a Black Tie dress code can seem rather intimidating – does it mean that you have to splash out on an expensive couture gown and tai-tai updo? Well, yes and no. How you determine what you wear really depends on the event itself – how close you are to the wedding couple, the type of guests who will be attending and the wedding venue itself.

Black Tie doesn’t necessarily mean you have to wear a long, floor-sweeping gown (if the dress code says White Tie though, then long gowns are a must) but you should generally look like you’re headed to a fancy cocktail party. If you’re wearing a shorter cocktail dress, pair it with classic pumps and jewellery to up the formal factor.

For men (yes we didn’t forget you!), a tux and bow tie is standard. However, you can pretty much get away with a formal black suit, white shirt and black tie in Singapore (because how many of you guys actually have a full tux hanging out in your closet, am I right).


Jessica Tham Formal(Source: tippytapp Instagram)

A Formal dress code is easier to dress for than Black Tie, as it usually means that wearing a long gown is optional. If you don’t have a floor-length gown for the occasion, opt for a dressy midi skirt or cocktail dress with a longer hemline.

Men should wear either a tux or formal suit, with a white shirt and conservative tie.

Smart Casual/Semi-Formal

Jessica Tham Smart Casual(Source: tippytapp Instagram)

Semi-formal or Smart Casual is probably one of the more common dress codes for weddings in Singapore. You can basically get away with a nice, knee-length dress and perhaps even a pair of embellished ballet flats (if you’re not exactly the graceful sort).

If you’re not really a dress person, a pair of formal pants in a classic cut will work as well. Wide-legged pants are quite on trend this season, especially in neutral hues like beige or white.

If the wedding is an evening one, go for darker colours and more formal accessories to err on the safer side of things. After all, it’s better to be a bit overdressed than underdressed.

Men can generally wear a shirt and pants (but not denim), with smart shoes. If the wedding is an evening one, throw on a blazer just in case. Ties are usually optional for Smart Casual dress codes.

Beach/Outdoor Formal

Jessica Tham Beach Outdoor Formal(Source: tippytapp Instagram)

Outdoor Formal is a somewhat tricky dress code, because you don’t usually associate outdoor or beach weddings with formalwear. Nevertheless though, you can’t possibly show up in a bikini and slippers right? If the wedding is at a beach, try a maxi dress in a light, floaty material – so you can channel the beach goddess vibe and stay cool throughout the ceremony. For shoes, go with wedges, flats or embellished sandals.

Men can wear a lighter-coloured shirt with khakis and loafers.


Jessica Tham Casual(Source: tippytapp Instagram)

Even if the dress code says casual, you still have to put some thought into your outfit. It’s still a wedding, so you can’t exactly rock up in board shorts and slippers you know? A romper in a thicker structured fabric and more conservative cut is a nice change from your standard party dress, but be sure to pair it with classy accessories and covered-toe shoes to look more put-together.

Got any fashion-related questions for Jessica? Email us or leave a comment below. For more of Jessica, follow her on Instagram or check out her blog. Check out other fashion articles from her Fashion FAQs column here.

Still want more? Check out these other articles:

Taobao Wedding Guide

Unexpectedly Romantic Wedding Venues In Singapore

Tippytapp’s Wedding Prep

8 Ways To Save Money On Your Wedding Flowers

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