What To Wear to 4 Different Types of Fall Weddings

Photo illustration by Katie Couric Media

No matter the dress code: RSVP in style.

You checked yes on your RSVP card and popped it in the mail. Now comes the fun (and sometimes intimidating part): It’s time to figure out what to wear to your upcoming fall wedding. And with so many postponed weddings rescheduled for this season, you might even have a few different events to dress for — each with a different dress code. 

Perhaps it’s a casual cocktail party at a beautiful waterfront restaurant, or your friends are fancy and feel like toasting to a lifetime of happiness with a formal black-tie affair. Or maybe you scored an invite to a fabulous tropical destination wedding and have the chance to escape the chilly air. No matter the venue or dress code recommendation, we’ve selected four different top-to-toe looks that work for an array of different fall wedding styles. 

When it comes to fall fashion, it’s fun to play dress up in seasonal colors. Think rich magenta, dark burgundy, and sage green. And if you’re the lucky one heading somewhere warm, our preference is to match the theme of the destination and rock bold and bright colors that aren’t as suitable back at home. It could be your only chance to wear something summery until next year, so why not pack a palm-tree punch? 

Below, shop four amazing fall wedding guest dresses, plus the shoes, bag, and jewels to go with each. Then, get your phone ready to snap some amazing pics at the wedding to post on social. You may give someone else struggling to find a wedding outfit the inspiration they’re searching for. (P.S.: While we’re at it, if you want to wow the bride and groom with a gift they’ll love, check out Katie and Ellie’s go-to wedding gifts.)

What To Wear to a Dressy-Casual Fall Wedding

So Splendid Satin Long Sleeve Wrap Dress by Lulu’s

The Dress:  

Sometimes a dressy-casual dress code can be the most challenging. Just how casual will it be? We recommend taking a nod from the venue location and doing a quick Instagram search to see what other people have worn. But rest assured: You can always play it safe with a mini wrap dress in a luxurious satin fabric. And since it’s fall, why not play it up a bit in a jewel-tone? We love the flattering V-neck and wrap style of this magenta stunner. Plus, it’s an easy option to wear to other fall events (or even date nights!)  

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Salema Light Nude Patent Pointed-Toe Pumps by Lulu’s

The Shoes: 

A more modern take on the classic nude pump, this nude patent leather pair features a see-through body to give your feet some extra pizazz.

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Rayne Knotted Lamé Satin Clutch by Loeffler Randall

The Bag: 

Add some shimmer and shine to the outfit with this adorable gold Loeffler Randall clutch. If you prefer your hands to be free during cocktail hour, this comes with an optional gold strap to wear over your shoulder.

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Octo Interlocking Link Pavé Earrings by Bauble Bar

The Jewels: 

News flash: It’s cool to mix your metals. Top off your dressy-casual look with these chain link statement earrings featring pavé crystals. At less than $30, these are a must-have.

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What To Wear to a Cocktail-Attire Fall Wedding

Forever Be Floral Sleeveless High-Low Dress by Lulu’s

The Dress: 

If you’re a fan of florals, but like subtle prints, this asymmetrical high-low navy dress is an elegant option for a cocktail-attire wedding. The bottom half of the dress is see-through, making it the perfect in-between style to toe the line between too formal and too casual.

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Antilique Strappy Sandal by Vince Camuto

The Shoes: 

Burgundy makes its way on the fashion scene every fall, and this year is no exception. The deep red hue on this strappy Vince Camuto heel will compliment your navy dress in an unexpected way.

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Stripe Envelope Clutch by Kurt Geiger London

The Bag: 

It’s always fun to make a statement with your purse at a wedding. With pops of blues, yellows, red, glitter, and gold, this Kurt Geiger London clutch (that also includes a chain strap) will have wedding guests asking you, “Where is that purse from!?”

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Laini Mini Hoops by Soko

The Jewels: 

Since you’re making a statement with your purse, keep your jewelry dainty and subtle. These mini gold hoops are the perfect accessory to top off your cocktail-attire look.

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What To Wear to a Black-Tie Fall Wedding

Leila Satin Charmeuse Maxi Dress by BHLDN

The Dress: 

Just because it’s black-tie doesn’t mean you need to wear black. This sage green satin maxi dress by BHLDN has a flattering deep V neckline and an empire waist, and its sleeves will keep you covered in case the venue is chilly.

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Camellia Heeled Sandals by Loeffler Randall

The Shoes: 

Brides are flocking to Loeffler Randall’s 4 inch Camellia heel in white (they keep selling out!). But you definitely can rock the trusted brand’s gold version, flecked with burgundy, at your black-tie wedding.

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Le Gold Clutch by Chantecaille

The Bag: 

Chantecaille’s limited edition acrylic clutch features specks of gold throughout — and it’s the perfect statement purse to go with your black-tie dress. This glitzy clutch will also work well for any holiday parties this winter.

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Siren Semiprecious Stone Stacking Ring by Monica Vinader

The Jewels: 

Admire your hand as you reach for your next cocktail with this gorgeous Monica Vinader semiprecious green stone ring. Since the dress is a statement in such a beautiful hue, keep the rest of your jewels minimal.

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What To Wear to a Tropical Destination Fall Wedding

Foliage-Print Cross-Back Midi Dress by Farm Rio

The Dress: 

The best part about a destination wedding in warm weather is getting to wear a more colorful, breezy outfit. The tropical print on this sunset pink Farm Rio midi-dress will not only match the locale, it’s also made from cotton so you won’t feel constricted (or sweat as much) on the dance floor in it.

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Brelanie Sandal by Vince Camuto

The Shoes: 

Anchor the tropical-printed dress with a pair of honey brown heels. This on-trend pick by Vince Camuto features woven detailing that you’ll be able to easily mix and match with other outfits on the trip, as well.

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Lyla Bucket Bag by L*Space

The Bag: 

The subtle pink and white palm tree motifs on this L*Space bucket bag will match your dress in an understated way. This cute straw bag is deep enough to fit your phone, lipstick, and keys (what else do you really need?). Plus, it features a drawstring enclosure to prevent your items from falling out, which is always something to consider when you’re deciding on a basket bag.

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Resin Drop Hoop Earrings by Nordstrom

The Jewels:

You’re probably near a beach, so honor the magnificence of the shoreline by rocking these brown resin drop hoop earrings that feature dangling gold pooka shells. Why not dive into the tropical wedding theme with full fashionable force?

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