I think dressing to attend a summer wedding is the easiest of all the seasons. Even if no dress code is indicated on the invitation, you can take a look at the venue and the time of day and pretty well figure out which direction to go. Most of the time, I am able to break it down into these two categories:
Before 4:00 p.m. – Go with a summer dress -- it can be fun, but not too revealing or too short. Avoid wearing black or white, and instead choose summer colors. If the event is indoor, wear a higher heel pump or sandal. If the event is outdoor, choose a lower, wider heel sandal for comfort and to avoid having your heels sink in the grass.
After 4:00 p.m. – It can be a bit tricky here depending on the venue. But an indoor evening summer wedding typically calls for a cocktail dress in a lighter-weight fabric. You can wear black but avoid wearing a solid black dress without any additional color. Again, avoid anything too short or too revealing. If it is outdoor, an evening wedding still calls for dressier fare. Consider taking a wrap or shawl in case it is windy and be mindful of your shoe choice given the terrain.
Of course, there are always exceptions. That’s why it is important to know a little bit about the venue. We recently attended a Saturday morning wedding that was held at a downtown museum. When we left our house, I was a bit afraid that I was overdressed for the occasion. Not at all – it was one of the most elegant weddings I’ve ever attended, and my blue-green chiffon crinkle cocktail dress was just the ticket.