Five easy and extraordinary outfits for your next beach wedding
For starters, since any one of these seaside events takes place mostly, if not entirely, outside—and often somewhere hot, tropical and paradise-y—it inherently calls for a more casual ensemble. Still, you can’t wear something so casual that it looks like you’re on vacation rather than celebrating a momentous occasion in a friend or family member’s life. Whereas short sundresses don’t work, most any long skirt-ed silhouette does; a pair of flat sandals is okay, but it still has to seem fancy. It’s a tricky balance to strike.
Bold boho-ish accessories are fine, especially for any beach weddings in exotic locales; just balance them out with a shorter, more fitted dress (a long caftan will feel like overkill). And flat sandals are a must—unless you have verbal confirmation that you won't be walking on sand, never wear any kind of heel to a beach wedding! Slowly sinking as you step never looks chic, no matter how awesome your shoes are.
Bing: Cynthia Draped Tulip Dress, $396, Aliceandolivia.com; Leaf Cluster Earrings, $67, Wendyminkjewelry.com; Givenchy Le Vernis Intense Color Nail Lacquer, $20, Sephora.com; Swarovski crystal-embellished suede wristlet clutch, $412.50, Matthew Williamson, Net-a-porter.com; Sandals, $178, K.Jacques St.Tropez, Shoescribe.com
The cool girl
Imagine the coolest girl in attendance, the one who's taken time off from her sexy I've-only-heard-about-that-in-movies kind of job and flown in from some major city for the ceremony. This is what she would wear, no?
Bing: Layered Twist Column Dress, $795, 3.1. Phillip Lim, Shopbop.com; Etched Pyramid Stud Earrings, $6, Charlotterusse.com; Rose hair clip, $245, Dannijo.com; Marley Clutch, $127, House of Harlow 1960, Revolveclothing.com; Riley Sandal, $250, Rebeccataylor.com
What a difference one color can make! In black, especially with stilettos and diamonds, this would be dressy enough for the most lavish of galas—but ice blue is less buttoned-up. Really, the beauty of this look is its refreshing simplicity, so understated shoes and a handbag are important; make-up should be limited to bold red lipstick.
Bing: Silk crepe de chine maxi dress, $575, Tibi, Net-a-porter.com; Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème Lipstick, $30, Sephora.com; Starla Plank Sandal, $175, Loefflerrandall.com; 'Lytton' Clutch, $295, Diane von Furstenberg, Nordstrom.com
If you cannot survive an event without extra height, this delicate wedge is the way to go—it provides a flattering boost without bogging you down in the sand. Also, a high-low skirt is ideal because of the style's adorable gold bow studded T-strap—shows off the feet!
Bing: Sunrise Over the Sea Dress, $157.99, Modcloth.com; Liquid Gold Small Interlaced Earring, $115, Alexisbittar.com; Louise Clutch, $200, Lauren Merkin, Neimanmarcus.com; Polished Gold Wavy Ring, $75, Kenneth Jay Lane, Charmandchain.com
This one is about as formal as you can go without looking out of place. The key to getting away with so many jewels on the beach is to make them chunky ones; also, you need to balance all those bold accessories with an effortlessly draped dress.
Bing: Sierra Ombre Strapless Dress, $598, Dvf.com; Metallic Sandals With Rhinestones, $79.90, Zara.com; Graduated Choker, $5.80, Forever21.com; Single Glitter Clutch With Perspex Spikes & Teardrop Crystals, $840, Mawi, Modaoperandi.com; Silver Pave Bear-Trap Bangle Set, $550, Eddie Borgo, Neimanmarcus.com