QUESTION: I am attending an out-of-state 7 p.m. wedding at a fancy hotel — the Mayo Hotel in Tulsa. The invitation does not say black- tie or formal. Is it OK to wear a long navy dress with a jacket? Or should it be a shorter cocktail dress? All I have heard is that some guests are wearing black and the bridesmaids are wearing blue with lots of sparkles.
CALLIE'S ANSWER: I am sure it would be fine. Ask of one your friends to come over and look at it to get a second opinion. You can never go wrong with a cocktail dress. Have fun!
LILLIE-BETH'S ANSWER: Evening weddings are considered more formal than daytime ones, and, as you mentioned, the site is formal, too. I learned long ago that an 8 p.m. wedding usually meant black-tie and that a 7 p.m. wedding, while still formal, could indicate cocktail attire.
In the 2011 book “Emily Post's Etiquette: Manners for a New World” (18th edition) and on the website, emilypost.com, the etiquette guru's descendants and authors of the book divide wedding attire into separate evening categories: formal, semiformal and evening, with slightly different dress styles for each. The “Emily Post” authors also noted that the ceremony time provides some clues as to what to wear, as well as local custom and nature of the ceremony.
In Oklahoma at a hotel like the Mayo Hotel, I think what you're wearing sounds appropriate and very nice, but if you're unsure, find out more about what other guests are wearing.