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The 9 Best Dresses for Summer Weddings


Weddings are fun, but it’s pretty common to encounter a pre-wedding wardrobe crisis (remember Bridesmaids?). Summer weddings call for practicality as much as they do style. When blistering heat and gross humidity both make the guest list, the perfect lightweight summer dress should help you beat the heat and enjoy the wonderful aspects of a summer wedding. Her Campus has found nine great dresses that will allow you to enjoy your fun in the sun.

1. Garden Wedding: Tea Time With the Bride and Groom


This super cute silk dress with a flattering full skirt ($68) is short and sweet for summer weddings. Take a spin on your average LBD with a pattern that is fit for summer and full of fun. The sweet, scattered palm-tree print allows you to add accessories and play with color. Throw on a pair of strappy wedges and you’ll find that you don’t have to sacrifice comfort for this fancy occasion!

2. Traditional Wedding: Not Your Grandma’s Floral Dress


For a traditional wedding, try a look that’s more conservative for the ceremony but can unwind for the reception. Take this opportunity to play with fun colors and patterns. While it’s important to find a dress that’s an appropriate length, nobody said you couldn’t impress the guests with fabulous summer colors!  Try this cotton floral midi dress from ASOS ($104.80). Bring a sweater ($38) to the ceremony, and when it’s time for the reception, toss it aside and show off your dress.

3. Barnyard or Farm Wedding: Wedding Whimsy


If you’re going to a casual, rustic wedding, let your guard down and experiment with your style. Rock a comfy dress, like this lightweight rayon maxi ($78). Show off some new shades or a hat to combat the heat. A pair of retro strappy sandals will complete the look and impress the crowd.

4. Daytime Semi-Formal Wedding: She’s a Peach


One great thing about summer weddings is that bold and beautiful colors are part of the package—you know you’re signing up for them the moment you RSVP. So why not jump on board and provide the guests with a visual feast with this neon coral layered dress? Although you should typically avoid polyester in the heat, a polyester-blend dress won’t give you the same unfortunate (read: stifling) result of 100-percent-polyester clothing. Wear this dress with gold accessories for maximum impact! 

5. Nighttime Semi-Formal: Summer Nights

Yes, you CAN wear black to a summer wedding, especially if it’s a nighttime occasion and you won’t be targeted by the blistering sun! Just remember to keep the silhouette light. If you’re trying to find a more elegant dress for a summer wedding, we recommend this one from Forever 21 ($20.99). This maxi dress is perfect for a summer night with its sheer, lightweight skirt and skinny halter straps. The dress has all the breeze of a mini dress but adds some modesty for a more formal affair. Georgette will be a wedding guest’s best friend because it’s both light and stylish.

6. Backyard Wedding or Informal Wedding: No Place Like Home


You’ll love this viscose shift dress ($84) from Topshop; it’s comfortable for summer weather because it allows you to move around more freely, and the silk-like material will feel light on your skin. For an outdoor wedding, you could wear this dress with a cute sun hat and some retro sunglasses to keep the sun out of your eyes.

7. Beach or Destination Wedding: Barefoot Beauty


A halter maxi ($68) is great for keeping you cool because it exposes your back. All you need are some oversized sunnies and strappy sandals and you’ll be ready to set off to a destination wedding or any other summer location! This bold printed dress may require you to go light on the accessories, but a bright lipstick and a clutch that provides a pop of red will complete the look perfectly. With the heat, salt and humidity, it can be pretty hard to keep your makeup on and your hair from frizzing, so trythese products that will help your look stay fresh all day on the beach!

8. Black-Tie Wedding: Not Your Average Occasion


For an evening wedding with an invitation that specifies black tie, you should definitely wear a long dress. Black-tie weddings can still take place in the summer, so if you’re searching for an outfit that will fit this formal criteria, check out this cute dress ($89.99). Turn up the glamour with the hot-pink jersey material; it will leave you feeling cool even with the extra length. This dress will look effortless and elegant, especially when paired with a messy updo and rosy makeup. Check out these products for a natural summer beauty look!

9. Cocktail-Attire Wedding: Oh So Gatsby


If you would rather cut the length and try a formal cocktail dress at a black-tie wedding, the material of the dress is important. Of course, you still want to stay cool, so avoid those obvious winter fabrics like knit or velvet and go for a lighter feel with this soft mesh dress ($95.85). Try a longer skirt than your less formal mini, but one that can move so you remain comfy and less restricted. For a black-tie cocktail dress, amp up the glamour and wear a dress with beading or sequins! This Great-Gatsby-inspired cocktail dress would look great with a ‘20s updo and dark red lips.

Summer dresses are super fun to shop for if you know what to look for! Check out Her Campus’s Wedding Survival Guide for when your friends start getting married and you’ll be all kinds of prepared for these memorable moments to come.

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