Customs come and go but some wedding etiquette matters have stood the test of time. We haven't always worn white dresses on our wedding day but so long as we have, most everyone can agree that anyone but the bride wearing white is a no-no. Sure, not all brides choose white but up until now, anything even remotely hinting at white was considered one of the greatest wedding wear gaffes a guest can make. Emily Post Institute director and great-granddaughter-in-law of its namesake Peggy Post was asked recently "Does a cream lace dress compete with the bride?" While few of us are advice columnists, most of us would gasp and immediately steer this questioner to something a bit more wedding-appropriate such as... well... ANY color but white or any variation thereof, including cream, ivory, eggshell and ecru.
Except Peggy did the unthinkable. She said go for it. "Today, wedding guests can wear cream — or white for that matter — as long as the outfit doesn’t say 'bride,'" she wrote. "For example, your short, lace-over-color sheath sounds like a great cocktail party dress, while a long version of the same could impose on bridal territory."
This is not a new opinion of Peggy's either. In 2009, she wrote in Good Housekeeping that you can wear white to a wedding "just as long as it doesn't look remotely bridal." Without seeing both the guest's potential dress and the bride's, it's difficult to say if this dress falls in that category but cream lace sure sounds like something one might find on a wedding gown.
So is this a sign of cultural change in our accepted wedding code of conduct or is it simply one advice writer's opinion based on nothing but, well, her own opinions? Would you wear white to a wedding? Brides, how do you feel about your guests showing up in white?