May 19, 2023
A Wedding at the Lake
She’s not convinced that she would want to drag a long white dress across the lawns, boat ramps, errant piles of discarded bait etc., but it’s not her wedding!
But she will be beautiful, and just dressy enough to be festive!
She’s one of those women who would be happy wearing all black, all day, every day, but of course you can’t do that for most weddings – especially one that’s immersed in nature!
So she focuses on her favorite scarf, and chooses her wedding outfit (and other garments) accordingly…
She looks lovely in green and blue – her family will be beyond thrilled to see her in a dress, and a green dress at that!
And an off-the-shoulder top for the rehearsal picnic? They will be speechless…
Surprising one’s family is always amusing, isn’t it?
For such a small travel capsule wardrobe, she really has quite a few options, depending on what the weather does. She fully expects to change OUT of the gold sandals and back into her flat black sandals as soon as the dancing starts!
Have you ever been invited to an unusual wedding? I once went to a wedding where more than half of the guests wore black dresses – and NOBODY told me that was a thing.
I’m still irked that I BOUGHT A DRESS THAT WASN’T BLACK, just to wear to that wedding… Sheesh!
p.s. Seven years ago, we added accessories to a black, grey and blue wardrobe; I love accessories…
This scenario reminds me a little of my cousin’s wedding. The only difference is that the serial black wearer was my aunt, the mother of the bride, who was informed my her daughter that black was not an option. She ended up in a nice red.
Amusingly, the various colourful catalogue she had when I stayed with her in the March lead me to what is now my favourite designer.
The bride wore a custom-made ivory blazer and floor length skirt tastefully trimmed with lace appliqués. She wore a saucy matching hat with a small veil and satin high top sneakers. Her bridesmaids wore dresses in styles of their choice to flatter their varying shapes using fabrics in a jewel-toned palette selected by the bride. Think of a bouquet of sweet pea: bright pink, bright blue-violet, bright purple. The ceremony was held in a small town park, the reception at a country club. The couple would make their home on the groom’s family dairy farm, thus using tiny steel buckets for floral arrangements on the tables using the same colors as the bridesmaids’ dresses. The effect was utterly charming.
A wedding I am about to attend will be a big cocktail/ dance party at a nice athletic/event club. The groom will wear a black suit, white shirt, no tie. The bride will wear a long black skirt and a white blouse… changing to jeans for dancing. The couple (ages 70 & 71) will be accompanied by their adult children who will wear black and white. I rather like the freedom people have to adjust to their own style! And, the music at this upcoming wedding will be awesome. Rock on, boomers!!!! 🎵🎶🎵🎶🧡🎵🎶🧡🎶🎵🧡🎶🧡🎵🎵🎵🎶
How awesome! I like the first one specially, but the second sounds great to attend!
Amanda Hudson says
Sounds so fun! How nice to find love a second time around.
Carol S says
Lovely peacock/lagoon colours to wear for a weekend wedding at a lake. I could also see some jewelry (earrings, bracelet or necklace) in peridot to bring out the light yellow-green in the scarf. A dash of the unexpected.
What a beautiful scarf. Gorgeous colors. Now to see if some of those black clothes come in navy. I have a couple of holes to fill for what I want to take on our short trip this summer. Have a lovely weekend ladies.
BTW I really appreciate the thumbnail you give on the Six Paintings Six Months that shows the new additions for that post. Makes it really easy for me to find when you added something.
My brother got married at the Texas Renaissance Festival. I made myself and my best friend an outfit for the day (tasteful and fully covered). it was a ton of fun. the wedding pictures can’t be matched!
Liz Custer says
I love your capsule wardrobes! I recently had my color analysis Redone, yes it is back from the 80’s (heehee) and I am no longer wearing black. Navy is my new dark neutral along with charcoal gray. I can wear this teal green! How would teal green look with navy? New colors say i am a “bright spring”! Would love your tips on rebuilding a whole new wardrobe and fyi, I am almost 60, have 5 grandkids, six grown kids and I run two online businesses from my phone! I LOVE blazers and suits but only wear thise for DAR luncheons!
Liz, not sure you will see this, but curious what your old season was?
The story sounds lovely. I would need something else for the evening thinking about the closeness to water.
I shared with you about a wedding we were invited this year in January (!). I was at first really worried about what to wear, especially for the weather (lower than 50 temps) and my reluctance to wear any heels. (I just don’t even care for them now and have nothing to do with my lifestyle: no car, a 4 year old, not willing to suffer foot pain, you get the picture). The wedding though was lovely: a vineyard near Barcelona with great food & wine plus nice friends. I had a really good time and was able to dance pain-and-careless with my suede ankle boots and a floral dress.
As AK said, freedom for guests please! If not provided, seek your own gals!
Cheers & blessings.
I went to a wedding years ago that was pretty conventional, fashion-wise. The bride’s dance with her father was anything but. They danced to “I Wanna Be Sedated,” by The Ramones, because the dad was a big Ramones fan. (Anyone who knew them wasn’t really surprised.)
I love the accent colours in today’s wardrobe. Probably 90% of my wardrobe is comprised of cool colours so I’m a fan of exploring ways to wear those colours.
You’ve asked for stories of interesting wedding dress codes. My contribution to the discussion is a story in the making.
My nephew is getting married later this summer. The invitations were recently posted on a well known online wedding-centric site and they’ve requested that everyone dress in cocktail or Hollywood glam style. They’ve also requested that guests not wear white or any jewel tones. 🤔
My sister and I (67 and 60, respectively) are trying to wrap our heads around this dress code. ”No jewel tones” eliminates a large number of options. What’s left? Pastels and mid-toned outfits.
The Hollywood glam aspect is tricky. How does a pale, greying, curvy, non-jewelry-wearing gal of a certain age DO Hollywood glam without looking like mutton looking like lamb? Sister and I both sew and want to look classy rather than costume party’esque.
If I’m investing time and effort to make a dress, I want to be able to wear it multiple times afterward. Maybe I should find a feather boa or make a long trailing draped scarf a la Grace Kelly in To Catch a Thief? Note….I have a short neck and these detachable glam accoutrements might give off the glamorous effect of my being strangled by my sartorial choices. Yeah….I’m frustrated and am half-tempted to just flash my Eccentric Aunt Club credentials and wear a nice dress, leaving the Hollywood glam to the young’uns.
Rant over – happy weekend, all!!
(Thoughts and suggestions are very much welcomed!)
Susan in Toronto says
Sounds like you can wear black or grey. Not sure if they are one of your colours but that might work. When I searched for “Hollywood glam” I see a lot of figure hugging dresses with open necklines.
Elsie W says
I think of classic movies from the 40s or 50s and styles by Edith Head for Hollywood glam. I’m guessing a more current version might be a red carpet look. What about a tuxedo in a soft pink or lavender, or a beautiful silver with a sequins tank? I’m also headed to a destination beach wedding this summer and I’m sticking with navy and white as my neutrals with beach blues and greens.
Beth T says
Perhaps gold or silver! Why don’t you ask the bride what the heck she means by “Hollywood Glam but no jewel tones”?
I have no idea what your style is, but try googling clothing images of Dame Judi Dench. She wears lovely, often neutral, outfits to gala events. One outfit I saw looked like a black camisole top with simple black pants, but with an amazing ankle length lace jacket (duster?) over the top. Comfortable, elegant, and very dressy.
Quite frankly Wendy I think it is terribly rude dictating to guests of all ages/sizes/styles what to wear! This never used to happen did it! However, I appreciate it is difficult when it is family.
How about you and your sister try and find some images of English actresses Helen Mirren and Judi Dench for inspiration? They are both incredibly stylish older women with grey hair. I know, I know they have stylists, unlimited funds, etc., but who knows you might find some ideas!
I only have two ‘formal’ dresses. Both in crepe, below the knee, I guess what we would have called a ‘sheath’ dress back in the day. One darkish green and the other light navy. Very plain but can easily be ‘dressed up or down’. Like you I am not a jewellery person, but do like a nice brooch or earrings and pick out a brighter colour that way. Or a little bag.
I made them about 8 years ago I think but they are still going strong (apart from an interlude when I put on too much weight…) and I still get compliments when I wear them.
You may not get chance to wear it a lot but if it is a classic style it will not date and as you can sew, your outlay will be much less. Aren’t we lucky we can sew! Good luck!
Thank you for these suggestions, Julia. I do truly count it a great advantage that I learned to sew. My sister is far more skilled and I’m sure she will help me work out the fit issues. That’s the trickiest part for me when sewing for myself.
Wow, I thought the wedding we will be attending in two weeks was a bit tricky! It will be in Kitty Hawk, NC, not on the beach, in a lovely small church and the reception is on the pier, in a venue that caters the dinner. It is formal, but I realize that there is a generation gap when it comes to what is considered formal! LOL I’m the grandmother so it took some real thinking about what to wear, but the rehearsal dinner was even more of a problem, as it’s on the other pier and no directions as to dress, so I’m winging it!
“Winging” it a great idea for Kitty Hawk! 😉
I went to a wedding and women wore white dresses! I guess anything goes. This fall I’m attending a wedding the girls standing up in the wedding are wearing black dresses. I wonder how guest will wear black? Enjoy all your post everyday!
Beautiful choices! But could J. Crew be a bit less prominent? Here in Los Angeles at least, their selection and quality are really disappointing ( as is the consistency in sizing)
I’m so dependent on J.Crew for a range of colors with good photographs! There’s a world of lovely clothes, but NOT a world of good images of the clothing – I don’t understand it…
Now is a good time to remind everyone about your list of websites to scan for items to fill the wardrobe gaps.
I haven’t been to any weddings in quite a number of years. This topic has reminded me that I don’t have a dress for that occasion as I have lost a lot of weight and need to purchase one when the time comes. I’ll probably turn to Talbots or soft surroundings for a dress. Have a lovely weekend.
Weddings do seem to have changed a lot over the years. My daughter who is in high school was asking me last night if she would really have to get married in white (we have a friend of the family getting married so we were talking about it) and I said no, it will be her wedding, she can wear what she wants. She does not love skirts (I was the same at her age) and so she then asked if should could wear pants. I let her know she can wear whatever she wants.
Cathy Tucker says
Janice, I so enjoy your blog. Thank you for your wit, creativity and elegance- inspiring me to think intentionally about my possessions, and devlop a curated wardrobe. My packing skills are all down to your ideas. Its fun to travel just with a carryon but feel stylish and “me”. A long time ago I think you toyed with the idea of publishing a book once you created 100 wardrobes? I’d love to buy a copy if that has transpired ?
Sigh… I’m trying to learn to use AI imaging so that I can generate clothing images that don’t require crediting retailers; I realized years ago that if I write a book with lots of images, I’m going to have to either do the images myself or have a HUGE section of credits at the end of the book for each and every item that I use.
But I still really want to write it… it’s all in my crowded, messy head!
A book like that would make an excellent graduation gift as a young woman steps off into her first career, or a gift to a woman transitioning into retirement.
Oooh! Gorgeous colours. Add in purple and you have a good chunk of the colours in my closet. And that scarf! Once again I must sit on my hands before I do something silly.
I wouldn’t wear the shorts or the heels but everything else I could make work. What a great travel capsule.
Wendy, I don’t know what your style and colour picks usually are, but I would suggest if you are sewing your outfit that you check for patterns from So Vintage Patterns. A navy crepe tea length dress with a portrait collar would be great or something in silver gray satin if it must be really glam. I think the advice in John Roberts Powers book…Secrets of Style if I remember correctly, was that ladies with a short neck should wear wide or lower necklines and create an illusion of length. When I think Hollywood Glam, I always think of Barbara Stanwyck or Katherine Hepburn. Might be a way to get ideas for your dress?
Thank you for the lovely ideas!
Thank you Kari for that. I have been racking my brains for the name of the neckline ‘portrait’ – great for those of us with short necks! Both of your ideas sound lovely.
Beth T says
I do the window dressing for the charity shop I volunteer at. Our current window theme is worldwide travel. I tweaked it a bit this week dressing the mannequins in glamourous clothes for a cruise or wedding abroad. The lady mannequin now wears a long dark green gown with a light green and purple floral scarf round her shoulders (the leaves in the scarf are dark green). I found a purple dressy hat and various purple necklaces.
Beth T says
I have my own daughter’s wedding in the autumn. Trying to decide what to wear and finding it is making me 🤯 I
Angela Stewart says
I’m so glad you went back to the the scarf and or art inspiration – it sings better!
As I read this I am sitting in a hotel about to get ready for my niece’s wedding. It is a “black tie optional” event held in a barn venue. Difficult. It is currently cool and raining and will continue to rain all day. I am rethinking the wisdom of my cap-sleeve, beaded gown with gauzy layered floor-length skirt and matching 3 inch metallic slides. I am also pondering how to carry my black flats to wear during the dancing, as they are too big to fit in my clutch. I suppose I will hide them in my pashmina wrap.
Btw, LOVE the scarf and the colors. Now THESE are colors I have and wear often, though bright aqua/cyan rather than teal.
Ooohh that scarf ! Sigh !
I KNOW! I have so many scarves, and still I am tempted…