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This topic has come up recently with planners and so I wanted to tackle what colours were taboo for a wedding guest to wear and this will obviously change according to what culture of wedding that you are attending.

Photo by Will Steadman at a BusyBrides Wedding

It is perfectly understandable that as a wedding guest you want to look your best, but you really must also show respect for the happy couple too.

So it needs to be addressed that there are some colours that should be avoided when choosing your outfit. So let’s look at which colours are considered taboo for wedding guests to wear and why. Plus, we'll give you some alternative colour options so that you can still look fabulous without committing a fashion faux pas! So if you're struggling with what to wear to an upcoming wedding this may just help you make that decision

So what colours are considered taboo for wedding guests to wear?

When it comes to choosing an outfit for a wedding, there are certain colours that guests should avoid. The list of taboo colours includes black, white, and red.

BLACK is often associated with mourning in western culture and wearing it to a wedding can be seen as disrespectful or inappropriate.

WHITE is traditionally reserved for the bride's attire and wearing this colour as a guest can be seen as an attempt to steal attention away from her special day. Therefore, guests should avoid wearing all-white outfits or anything too similar to the bride's dress.

BusyBrides Toastmaster

RED. Now this is a new one on me as a wedding planner. Whilst I would say it was a no no for a Chinese or Indian wedding, for a western wedding I would have thought this colour was okay but this has been a topic on a handful of podcasts recently suggesting that this colour may draw attention away from the couple getting married whilst also associated with passion and love which can make some people uncomfortable at a wedding. I'm not sure I entirely agree with this as I have to wear Red when in my Toastmasters uniform at a wedding, and I'm the last person that would want to take anything away from my couple. Maybe use this colour with caution.

Other colours like a vibrant or flashy colour such as neon green or bright orange might not be suitable for a formal event like a wedding since they could come across as tacky or inappropriate. Apparently the colour green represents envy and jealousy

So when attending weddings, opt for more subdued tones like pastels or jewel tones that complement rather than detract from the couple's special day.

Choosing appropriate colours to wear at weddings shows respect for cultural norms and traditions while allowing you to express your personal style in respectful ways during someone’s special day.

What are some alternative colours guests can wear?

When it comes to wedding guest outfits, there are plenty of alternative colours that guests can wear instead of the traditional taboo ones. You can use jewel tones. These are rich and deep colours such as emerald green, sapphire blue, or a more ruby red which provide a regal and elegant look for a wedding.

Another great choice is pastels. Soft shades like blush pink, light lavender or baby blue can give your outfit a delicate touch without being too flashy or over-the-top.

Neutral colours are also a safe bet for weddings. Beige, grey or taupe hues can complement any skin tone while still keeping you looking stylish and sophisticated.

For those who want something more bold and unique, consider prints! Floral patterns or geometric designs in bright colours bring an element of fun to any wedding outfit. I must admit, I’m a big fan of floral patterns and most of my wardobe fits this brief even if it's just a little bit!

Sian Belton with wedding couple

Finally you can always add some metallics like gold or silver accents on dresses or shoes add just the right amount of glitz and glamour without being too overwhelming for the event.

So whilst there are some restrictions on what you should wear, just follow some of these guidelines and using your own fashion sense, you'll look fabulous whilst respecting your lovely couple on their wedding day.

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