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Why is it rude to wear black to a wedding?

Weddings are a joyous occasion where two people come together to celebrate love and commitment. The dress code for weddings varies depending on the culture, customs, and even personal preference. However, in many cultures, wearing black to a wedding is considered rude and inappropriate. In this blog post, we’ll dive deeper into the reasons why wearing black to a wedding is seen as impolite.

The Origin

In the past, wearing black to any occasion was considered a sign of mourning and was only reserved for funerals or when attending a wake. Wearing black to a happy occasion such as a wedding was seen as inappropriate and considered a major faux pas. Hence, it was considered inappropriate to wear black to a wedding.

The Symbolism Behind Black

Black is often associated with death, mourning, and grief. However, in modern times, black has become a popular and fashionable colour for clothing, especially in formal events. Even though black is now a common and acceptable colour to wear to funerals and memorials, it is still considered inappropriate to wear black to weddings. The reason behind this is that weddings are supposed to be happy and celebratory occasions, while funerals are not.


There are many superstitions about weddings, and one of the most widespread is the belief that wearing black to a wedding can bring bad luck or harm to the couple. It was believed that wearing black to a wedding was a sign of disapproval or resentment towards the couple. In some cultures, it is thought that black attracts evil spirits or demons who can bring bad luck to the newlyweds.

Cultural Differences

In some cultures, wearing black to a wedding is perfectly acceptable, and in many cases, even expected. For example, in many Asian cultures, black is the traditional colour of mourning, and wearing it to a wedding is seen as a sign of respect for the deceased, who are thought to be present in spirit at the ceremony. Similarly, in some African cultures, wearing black is a symbol of power, prestige, and elegance, and is often worn by high-status individuals at formal events.

Dress Etiquette

Whether black is appropriate to wear or not to a wedding depends a lot on the style and formality of the event. A black ball gown, for example, would be perfectly acceptable at a black-tie formal wedding, while a black sundress would be better suited for a casual or beach wedding. It is also essential to consider the wedding theme and the bridal party’s attire when deciding what to wear to a wedding. It is always better to err on the side of caution and choose something more colourful and appropriate.


Wearing black to a wedding can generate mixed emotions depending on the cultures and the individuals. Although black continues to be a fashionable and stylish colour, it is best to avoid wearing black to weddings in most cases. The symbolism and superstition behind the colour make it inappropriate for happy occasions such as weddings, and it is essential to be respectful of this cultural norm. It is always better to opt for brighter colours that celebrate the joyful nature of the occasion and that complement the festive atmosphere. Remember, you’re there to share in the joy of the couple, so the last thing you want to do is cause offense.


Why can’t I wear red to a wedding?

Red is a vibrant and eye-catching color often associated with love, passion and drama, hence, it is traditionally not considered as an appropriate color to wear to a wedding, especially if you are not the bride. Wearing red to a wedding is considered a faux pas in many cultures and can be viewed as a sign of disrespect to the couple getting married.

The primary reason behind this belief is that wearing red to a wedding can draw attention away from the bride’s special day. As guests at a wedding, it’s important to show respect and support for the couple, and wearing a bold red outfit could be interpreted as a sign of asserting oneself instead of focusing on the newlyweds. Besides, in photographs, the eye is immediately drawn towards bright colors, and red can steal the focus, which is not a desirable outcome for the wedding couple’s photographs.

The color red is also considered to be a traditionally “sexy” or “alluring” color. Because weddings are thought to be family events, wearing an outfit with a bold red hue might be perceived as inappropriate or suggestive, particularly if it is a short or tight dress. Therefore, wearing red can be seen as not adhering to the dress code or etiquette that is expected of wedding guests.

While red is a beautiful and attention-catching color, it is deemed inappropriate to wear it to a wedding as the day is about the couple, not the guests. By following the dress code and keeping the couple’s preferences in mind, guests can show respect and love towards the happy couple on their special day.

What is the most common color to wear to a wedding?

When it comes to dressing up for a wedding, there are certain guidelines that must be followed to avoid being too flashy or too informal. As a guest, it’s important to choose attire that complements the occasion and also respects the bride’s wishes. One of the most popular questions about wedding attire is certainly what color to wear for the event.

Traditionally, black and white have been taboo colors for wedding guests. Black is associated with mourning and grief, while white is reserved for the bride. There are, however, a few exceptions to this rule. For instance, if the dress code explicitly states black-tie, guests are expected to dress in evening gowns or tuxedos, with black dresses being perfectly acceptable. Additionally, some modern brides may be less concerned about guests wearing white and may even specifically request it.

Colors that are typically considered too bold or flashy, such as neon or bright hues, should be avoided. You should also check with the bride to get a sense of what color palette she has chosen for her wedding. While there are no hard and fast rules, wearing colors that are in harmony with the wedding colors is always a good choice.

In terms of the most popular colors to wear to weddings, pastels and jewel tones are always in style. Feminine pastel shades such as pale pink, lavender, and powder blue are a classic choice. Pairing these shades with metallic, neutral, or beige accessories is an elegant way to add sophistication and balance to your outfit. Jewel tones such as emerald green, ruby red, and sapphire blue are excellent options for fall or winter weddings. Pairing these shades with gold or silver accessories adds an extra layer of luxury.

Lastly, earth tones are a more subdued yet equally stylish option. Rich browns, deep greens, and rosy beiges are great choices for outdoor, rustic, or bohemian themed weddings. These colors add depth and texture to outfits in a calm and elegant way.

Choosing the right color to wear to a wedding could be considered an art form. By following these basic guidelines, you can make an informed decision that shows respect for the occasion and the bride. Remember to have fun and be confident in your choice, and you will surely shine as a guest.