Wedding

Garden Party Wedding Attire: Gorgeous Ideas for What to Wear To a Garden Wedding

Outdoor weddings are the latest trend, with couples opting  for smaller, more intimate garden weddings in backyards, parks, or botanical gardens. I’ve attended two and they were gorgeous!

Nature is the perfect place to tie the knot. Garden weddings excite all the senses with lots of light, blooming flowers, and gentle breezes, setting a magical scene that can’t be matched indoors.

Woman wearing pink garden party wedding attire

similar style here

If your invitation has arrived, but you’re not sure what to wear to a garden wedding in 2024, read on.  I have some handy style tips and suggestions for beautiful garden party wedding attire!

 

Women wearing soft pastel garden party wedding attire

Rosette One Shoulder Dress | Pink and Blue Floral Sheath

 

What to Wear to a Garden Wedding 

Garden Wedding Dress Code

Since Garden weddings are held outside, they automatically have a more laid-back and easygoing vibe than weddings in a church or fancy venue.

The dress code will be your main clue for what to wear. The most common garden wedding dress codes are:

Casual Garden Wedding: Think comfy and relaxed – you can wear a cute sundress or a flowy, casual maxi dress with flat sandals or espadrilles to keep things relaxed and cool.

Semi-Formal Garden Cocktail Attire: Step it up a notch! Aim for a knee-length, tea-length, or maxi dress in chic fabrics like chiffon, lace, or satin. 

Formal Garden Wedding: A rare gem. Go all out with an elegant gown. Picture a floor-length dress made of luxurious silk or tulle paired with killer heels and statement jewelry to add that extra oomph.

 

 

Woman wearing green garden party wedding attire

Green cocktail dress

The Time of Year

When deciding what to wear to a garden wedding, consider the season and the weather. 

For Springtime garden weddings or garden weddings in summer, imagine warm sunshine and vibrant bursts of color all around. Choose lighter, brighter colors, lightweight fabrics, and shorter sleeves.

It will be cooler out for early and late Fall garden weddings, so wear darker colors, muted shades, and heavier fabrics. Longer sleeves are a good idea; you might need a wrap, shawl, or a  dressy jacket for warmth. 

Women wearing garden party wedding attire next to accessories

Shop the Look

 

 

Garden Wedding Attire – Where to Find Inspiration

The secret to putting together a beautiful garden wedding guest outfit any season is to let the gorgeous natural environment inspire your look. For example:

Floral Prints: There’s nothing more garden-like than a floral dress. Go with the flow and choose a dress covered in floral patterns. Whether you prefer subtle or bold, floral motifs are a timeless choice for a garden wedding. It’s like you’re blending right into the scenery.

Rosettes are trending for 2024, so if you can find a rosette dress like the one above, you’ll look very fashion-forward!

Painterly Prints: Soft painterly prints with gentle colors that wash together can also be very pretty since they make you think of a pond or flowing garden waterfall.

Nature-Inspired Colors: Whether you prefer a print or solid color dress, take a cue from the garden’s color palette.

In spring, bright flowers like daffodils, tulips, and roses are popping up, so it’s nice to go with those cheery, vibrant hues.

In summer, the garden is still colorful but softer. Baby blue, peach, pastel pink, mint green, and lavender are pretty.

In the fall, the leaves turn, and earthy tones like rust, burgundy, teal, and plum can make you blend in beautifully with the environment. 

 

Q. Can You Wear Black to a Garden Wedding?

You might think black is too somber for a garden wedding, but colorful florals on a dark black, blue, or purple background can be lovely. Just be careful that the overall look isn’t too dark or moody. An outdoor wedding is a light, sunny, happy event, so nothing too edgy or goth-like.

Woman wearing blue garden party wedding attire

 

 

Blue 3d Floral Dress (here also)

Best Styles to Wear to a Garden Wedding

  • Romantic Styles

Garden weddings are blooming with love! Choose classic styles that are soft and rounded and follow the shape of your body.

Some of the best garden wedding guest dress styles are wrap dresses, fit and flare, sheath dresses, and A-lines. Anything that nips in at the waist is figure-flattering and youthful. Off-the-shoulder and one-shoulder dresses and tops are elegant and romantic.

Avoid severe or oddly cut clothing that looks extreme or is boxy or shapeless.

  • Flowy Fabrics 

Dresses, blouses, and even wide-leg pants made of light, flowy fabrics that blow in the breeze are elegant for a garden wedding. For example, chiffon is a favorite.  It’s also lightweight and will keep you cool at an outdoor wedding. Any kind of sheer overlay is also lovely.

  • Feminine Details

Attending any wedding, particularly in a garden setting, is a little like being part of a romance story, which is why a dress with feminine, romantic ruffles fits right in.

Lace and eyelets also ooze femininity and are a lovely choice for a garden wedding. A satin ribbon belt is a romantic detail and highlights your waist.

Bows are all the rage for Spring 2024 and suddenly appear on garden party wedding attire.

 

Women wearing bright spring garden party wedding attire

Yellow Floral Shirt DressChiffon Pleated Dress

 

 

Q. Can you Wear a Jumpsuit to a Garden Wedding

Yes, dressy jumpsuits have a chic vibe. This pink one, for example, with a halter neckline and wide flowy legs, is comfy and modern for an outdoor ceremony.

 

Woman wearing light pink garden party wedding attire

Pink Dressy Jumpsuit

I also love walk-through jumpsuits.  Have you seen them?  They are long formal gowns with a slit in the front that opens up to reveal elegant skinny dress pants.

They’re very popular lately and are a creative way to dress for a garden wedding.

 

Woman wearing floral print garden party wedding attire

Floral Walk through Jumpsuit

 

What Shoes to Wear to a Garden Wedding

Outdoor weddings usually occur on the grass, a patio, or a deck, so the type of shoes you wear is pretty important. 

Strappy heels are beautiful but not the easiest to balance in this kind of setting. And, if your heels are too thin and fine, it’s easy to sink into the grass, get your shoe caught in a stone or wood crack, or worse, snap off your heel – disaster!

You can wear heels if you feel confident, but you might also want to consider block heels. They’re a little chunkier and more stable on uneven terrain.

Wedges are a good choice, too, because they can give you some nice height, and you won’t sink into the grass.

Of course, you can always wear very low heels or flat sandals. A dressy, metallic pair always looks elegant.

7. Accessories for an Outdoor Wedding

To complete your garden wedding look, you’ll need a few accessories: jewelry – a few bangles, earrings, and a necklace.  You’ll also need a small, dressy bag. A sparkly clutch is always chic.

A wide-brimmed hat is a good idea if it’s sunny and looks glamorous. Sunglasses are another thing you should tuck into your bag (and don’t forget to wear sunscreen!)

If you are wearing a sleevless dress and it’s breezy or very sunny you might also want to think about a light summer wrap.

8. Hair and Makeup

The weather will affect your hair and makeup choice for a garden wedding.  Choose a hairstyle that can withstand a breeze or light rain. Wear classic, natural makeup focusing on glowing skin and soft, earthy tones to enhance your garden wedding look.

9. Etiquette

Lastly, always remember to respect the couple’s wishes. If they have specific requests or guidelines regarding attire, be sure to follow them. It’s also best to dress modestly ( watch the cleavage) and avoid wearing white, traditionally reserved for the bride.

Shop Garden Wedding Dresses

 

Garden Party Wedding Attire – 4 Seasons At a Glance

Spring is perfect for brights, pastels, and floral prints to blend in with the blooming scenery. Lightweight fabrics like chiffon or organza are your best friends here. Embrace the season with short sleeves, tea-length hems, or delicate lace details.

Summer is very hot! Opt for breathable fabrics that won’t have you melting. Airy sundresses, maxi dresses in bold, cheerful colors, or a chic jumpsuit for a modern twist will keep you cool. And when it comes to footwear, strappy sandals or espadrilles are your go-to for those summer garden vibes.

Early Autumn is a bit of a mix – late-blooming flowers still have their moment. Stick with midi-length dresses in warmer hues, and don’t forget to layer up with a light cardigan or a shawl for that extra warmth.

Late Fall brings cooler temperatures and changing leaves. Switch up your color palette to deeper shades like burgundy, forest green, or mustard. A long-sleeve or three-quarter-sleeve dress in heavier fabrics like velvet or silk can be stunning as the weather cools.

Dressing for a garden wedding is a joy when you embrace nature and enjoy playing with feminine dressing. Enjoy the enchanting atmosphere and the romance in the air, and feel pretty!

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17 thoughts on “Garden Party Wedding Attire: Gorgeous Ideas for What to Wear To a Garden Wedding

  1. Hi Deborah! I’m new to your blog, and I love your advice. My daughter is getting married in Punta Cana this spring, and I love the pink floral dress you are wearing in the main photo for yesterday’s wedding post. Can you provide any details on where it’s available? Thank you!!

    1. Hi Cathy, That’s funny because I just returned from a conference in Punta Cana and I wore that gown to the formal gala dinner! Unfortunately, I bought that dress last year so the exact print is not available, but the dress is in many other colors/prints. It’s from the brand Eliza J, and they continue to recreate this style every year since it is so popular. I have linked some under the second floral maxi dress (the pink one) in this post. See where it says SHOP floral maxis? Hope that helps. Have a great time. Cheers, Deborah

  2. Hi! I love your posts, but what about a fall outdoor garden wedding in New England, i.e., colder temperatures? I’m stumped. I used Rent the Runway in the past, but their listings are either too formal (sequins/ball gowns) or too short/cocktail/young style for a more mature figure. And shoes! OMG, what shoes to wear in the fall, outside, on uneven terrain — matching said unknown dress? Help!

    1. Hi Heather, outside in the fall in New England?.. who knows because it can be chilly and windy, or it can be still and as hot as summer. The weather is so kooky. I’d probably wear something with sleeves long or short in fall color. These are nice:https://rstyle.me/n/c7y2tib52f7 or https://rstyle.me/n/c7y2t5b52f7 or https://rstyle.me/n/c7y2xdb52f7 or https://rstyle.me/n/c7y2x7b52f7. Maybe this:https://rstyle.me/n/c7y2ytb52f7. You might also want to look into wraps! https://rstyle.me/n/c7y228b52f7 The fall cocktail dresses are just starting to arrive, but in a couple of weeks, there should be more, so hopefully, you will have some time to shop.
      Best wishes! Deb

  3. Hi Deborah, I have enjoyed reading your advice. I am 6 years old and would appreciate you showing some 16W plus size clothing for an evening wedding and where to purchase it. I love l the dresses shown above. Thanks

  4. I was at a location today where a wedding was taking place. All the women in the bridal party and the female guests wore lace dresses of various colors. Lace dresses are trendy wedding attire this year, or they planned it.

  5. Oh, all of these outfits are stellar. I would wear any of them to a wedding or any other special summer occasion. Dinner al fresco, for example. Beautiful choices!

    Grass and or gravel is killer with skinny heels. You WILL sink them, possibly stain them if they are fabric-covered. Flats, wedges, or wider chunkier heels are much more stable.

  6. I love your posts usually, Deborah, but on this occasion, I couldn’t see myself wearing any of these outfits. I think all those frills/ruches/lace would be too much for me, aged 47! But I go by the maxim that if a woman feels confident and can carry it off, why not!

  7. Hi Elizabeth, between the time the style board was created and posted, the tulle dress sold out, so I have substituted, but I will keep looking to see if I can find another. Cheers, Deborah

  8. Lovely suggestions. Just thinking that if on grass, the stilettos would sink into the ground. Maybe wedges or flats (I know they don’t look anywhere near as polished)

    1. Hi Carol,
      I mentioned in the post that a different type of shoe is more appropriate if the wedding is on the grass. It’s good if you can do a little research first. Some outdoor weddings, especially at an outdoor venue, are on a patio, so you’d be o.k. It just dep nds. The main the ng is you want to feel comfortable walking around. Cheers, Deb, ah

  9. I would recommend a wedge rather than a heel for outdoor celebrations. It’s much easy to walk on the grass.

    1. What if I have my little white keds (new pair, of course) dyed to match a midcalf flowered dress? I’m 69 years old.

      1. Hi Karen, I think a pair of soft ballet flats would be much prettier and just as comfy. Keds wouldn’t look right. They would pull from the dress and look heavy.

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