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Why is it not allowed to wear white to weddings?

Weddings are one of the most important events in someone’s life. They are a celebration of love, commitment, and family. However, there are certain things that are considered taboo when it comes to weddings. One such thing is wearing white. While it might seem like a harmless choice of attire, there are several reasons why this is frowned upon.

The Origin of the White Wedding Dress

The tradition of wearing a white wedding dress dates back to the 19th century when Queen Victoria chose to wear a white dress for her wedding to Prince Albert. Up until that point, brides wore dresses in different colours, with red being a popular choice in many cultures. However, Victoria’s decision to wear white popularized the colour for weddings and became a symbol of purity, innocence, and virginity.

Why White as a Bridal Color is Still Popular

Even though times have changed, and couples are getting married for love rather than formal arrangements, many brides still choose to wear white on their wedding day. There are different reasons why white as a colour for wedding dresses is still popular. For some, it’s a way to pay homage to the past and honor tradition. For others, it’s the simple beauty of the colour white that makes it appealing. White is a versatile colour that looks stunning on all skin tones and can be accessorized in different ways to create a personalized look.

Why Can’t Guests Wear White to Weddings?

While there are different reasons why brides choose to wear white, wearing white to a wedding as a guest is generally frowned upon. The reason why guests are discouraged from wearing white is that it has been traditionally reserved for the bride. Wearing white to a wedding can be seen as disrespectful to the couple, as it takes the focus away from the bride, who is the center of attention on her special day.

The Etiquette of Wearing White to Weddings

While it is not explicitly forbidden to wear white to a wedding, good etiquette dictates that you should avoid doing so. If you are unsure about what to wear to a wedding, always check with the couple or consult the invitation for any dress codes. If there are no specific guidelines, err on the side of caution and choose an outfit that is appropriate for the occasion and in a colour that contrasts with white.

Alternative Colours for Wedding Guests

If you are attending a wedding and are unsure of what to wear, here are some popular colour choices for wedding guests:

  • Black: While traditionally seen as a formal colour, black can be a great option for a wedding, especially if it’s a formal affair. Just make sure to avoid anything that looks too somber or funereal.
  • Neutrals: Nude, beige, and pastel shades are a great choice for a wedding. They are soft, romantic, and perfect for a spring or summer wedding.
  • Bright Colors: If you’re feeling bolder, bright colours can be an excellent choice. Just be careful not to outshine the bride or her wedding party.

Final Thoughts

Wearing white to a wedding as a guest might seem like a harmless choice, but it can be seen as disrespectful to the couple. It takes the attention away from the bride, who is the center of attention on her big day. Good etiquette dictates that guests should avoid wearing white to weddings and choose an outfit that is appropriate for the occasion. With so many options in terms of colour and style, there is no reason why you can’t look stunning while still respecting the couple’s wishes.


What colors are rude to wear to a wedding?

Weddings are special occasions, and as a guest, it’s essential to dress appropriately. One of the most important rules to keep in mind while selecting your attire for a wedding is to avoid any colors that could draw attention away from the bride. Traditionally, the bride wears white, cream, or ivory, so it’s considered rude to show up in any similar hues. Therefore, it’s best to steer clear of off-white, eggshell, beige, champagne, cream, or any other super light color that could be mistaken for white.

Wearing white or similar hues may signal that you are trying to compete with the bride’s spotlight, which is not only improper but also highly disrespectful. Moreover, the bride has put in a lot of effort to make this day special, and it would be careless and inappropriate to wear something that could undermine her efforts.

Another color to avoid is black. Although black is a timeless and classic color, weddings are joyous occasions, and black can often give off a somewhat sombre tone. However, if the dress code says black-tie, it’s okay to wear black or dark-colored attire. In such an instance, consult with the wedding planner or event coordinator for appropriate attire suggestions.

The key is to avoid wearing anything that could be mistaken for a bridal gown or anything that could make you stand out more than the bride. Wedding guests should aim to complement the wedding’s color scheme while also keeping in mind the formality level of the event. By avoiding shades of white, black, and other super light hues, you’ll not only be properly dressed but will also show appropriate respect to the bride and groom, making their special day even more magical.