When ‘country club’ is mentioned, the image that typically comes to mind is elegant ballrooms, wide expanses of greeneries, and exclusive invites.
You might know what to wear for a casual game of golf, but once nuptials are involved, you might find yourself unsure of what to wear to a country club wedding.
Generally, guests should wear formal attire to a country club wedding. You should go for a polished, timeless, and elegant ensemble. However, the current season, the venue itself, and the celebration’s schedule will also influence what is appropriate to wear for the occasion.
A deeper explanation of each factor that affects what you should wear to a country club wedding is provided below. Some tips for styling yourself are also given, followed by some style inspiration you can add to your board.
Country Club Wedding Guest Attire Guide
Prioritize the Dress Code
Regardless of where the wedding will be held—be it a country club, a mountain, or a pristine beachside resort—the first thing you should always consult is the indicated dress code. You can find this information on the invitation, and it will give you a clearer idea of what would be appropriate to wear.
Country clubs are often strict with their dress codes. In line with golf’s long-standing association with wealth and exclusivity, there is an emphasis on elegant and posh attire. Keep this history in mind as you plan your outfit for a country club wedding.
Formal attire. Women might have to wear floor-length evening gowns with high-quality, expensive fabrics; likewise, carefully styled hair and tasteful jewelry will be fabulous touches. Men can opt for tuxedos in classic black and white, though navy blue is also appropriate; leather shoes and chic accessories are a must.
Cocktail attire. Cocktail dresses—knee-length and tea-length are suitable—and sophisticated separates are ideal for women, while men can be dapper with blazers, dress trousers, and button-down shirts. Strappy heels, loafers, and oxfords are excellent choices for footwear.
Elegant casual attire. Women can achieve the country club chic aesthetic with a sundress, jumpsuit, or an ensemble with dressy pants; wedge heels and sandals, along with a scarf for a chilly nighttime ceremony, will complete the outfit. Meanwhile, men can wear a sports coat over a collared shirt and trousers. Leather slip-on shoes are a great choice for your footwear.
Choose Attire Appropriate for the Season
A considerable chunk of a country club’s property is outdoors—think sprawling greeneries for golf, tennis courts, and swimming pools. If the wedding will also be held outdoors, you should wear something appropriate for the season.
For a summer wedding, look for light and breathable fabrics. Chiffon and linen are beautiful and appropriate options.
Oppositely, a fall or winter wedding will warrant thicker fabrics to help you retain more heat. Velvet and cashmere are ideal. You can also wear additional layers if you think you need them.
Look at the Venue
If the venue looks ornate and ultra-formal, you can safely assume that traditional attire will be appropriate. You have to be more mindful of silhouettes, qualities of fabrics, and other subtleties.
Meanwhile, more modern and contemporary country clubs are more lenient in terms of attire. You can incorporate bold colors, eccentric cuts, and other unique touches into your outfit.
Factor In the Time of the Wedding
Read the wedding invitation to determine the day’s or weekend’s itinerary. Specifically, find out what time the ceremony will start and finish.
Generally, daytime weddings lean towards casual interpretations of dress codes. Lighter colors, flowy fabrics, and pastels will also be perfect for these ceremonies.
Oppositely, nighttime weddings are the best time for glamor and sparkle. Bust out your best cocktail or formal attire and enter the event with a flourish.
Tips for What to Wear to a Country Club Wedding
Adapt to the Weather
As you plan your country club wedding guest attire, it might be best to prepare two versions of your outfit. This tip is especially important for an outdoor wedding; one ensemble can be suitable for sunny weather, while the other variation can be appropriate for rain.
Go for Subtle Accessories
Complete your ensemble with subtle accessories that will not overshadow your entire outfit—or the couple getting married.
Consider putting on understated jewelry that is not too flashy. You can also add pocket squares, silk ties, and cufflinks for a more polished look.
In general, fewer accessories are preferable—instead of overaccessorizing, look for subtle touches that can add a lot of style and personality to your outfit. Think ties with modernized textures, colored shoes, bold lipstick, and so on.
Consider Getting Professional Stylists
Grooming is essential at a country club wedding, where sophistication and subtle luxury are prized commodities. Splurge on a hairstylist, a make-up artist, and a manicurist and pedicurist.
Get Alterations on Your Attire
Besides knowing the right thing to wear to a country club wedding, you should also find the right way to wear your attire. Outfits that are not well-fitted and tailored may seem unpolished at best or lazy at worst.
Once you have your garments, bring them to a tailor and have them work their magic on the clothes. Not only will a well-fitting outfit be more appropriate for the event, but it will also give you a confidence boost.
Stick to the Classics
Instead of hopping onto trends, you may want to stick with what has been tried and tested. Dresses, skirts, collared shirts, tailored pants, and knitted vests are fantastic options.
Do Not Go Too Casual
Even if the invitation calls for ‘casual’ attire, still aim for a sophisticated, chic, and elegant ensemble. Here are some garments, styles, accessories, and other things you may want to avoid:
- Denim jeans
- Baseball caps
- Loud prints
- Neon colors
- Overly sparkly jewelry
- Other athleisure garments (e.g., yoga pants, hoodies)
Avoid Being Too Revealing
For a country club wedding, you should avoid anything too revealing and risqué. Sheer dresses and tops, short skirts or shorts, and necklines that show too much cleavage can be considered inappropriate.
Country Club Wedding Attire: Style Inspiration
Meanwhile, he is wearing a classic three-piece ensemble in midnight blue with a matching patterned tie and a white undershirt. His polished leather shoes match the woman’s heels.
The man is wearing a black blazer worn over a plain white button-down. He has matching black trousers and a pair of obsidian loafers. His casual outfit is complemented by sunglasses and artfully windswept hair.
The woman in the center is sporting a visually appealing yellow shirt-and-trousers combo with monogrammed details, a matching pair of heels, and sunglasses.
The woman on the right has a brown off-shoulder midi-length dress, a white clutch, a pair of cream-colored heels, and sunglasses.
At the end of the day, navigating these fashion-related pieces of wedding etiquette is all about finding the balance between tradition and modernity or comfort and style. It might seem overwhelming at first, but with patience, you will find the right outfit that will bring you and the others around you joy and excitement.