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The Influence of Destination on Wedding Fashion: Culturally Sensitive Style Inspirations

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Wedding fashion can be a tricky thing to perfect, especially when you are attending a destination wedding for the first time. Finding the right balance between formal wear and casual can be tough. Luckily, there are plenty of great options at your disposal, no matter your style. 

This article will discuss how to find the right clothing for a destination wedding. We will talk about how to match a beach wedding guest dress code as well as how to be inspired by local cultures around your destination wedding location. 

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What To Wear To A Destination Wedding

When you are preparing to go to a destination wedding, one thing that is sure to be on your mind is, “What should my wedding outfit be?” In order to find the perfect outfit for a destination wedding, here are some of our best destination wedding fashion tips: 

Stick To The Dress Code

One of the most important things to do at not just a destination wedding, but any wedding, is to stick to the assigned dress code.

  1. Black Tie: Black Tie weddings are formal events. As the name suggests, this is the sort of space where you will see a lot of tuxedos. Evening gowns that touch the floor or elegant pantsuits are a must.
  1. Cocktail: Cocktail attire is a popular style within the wedding sphere. It balances a level of formality with some comfort. Dresses are shorter but still fall below the knee. Suitcoats and ties are the alternative to the Black Tie tuxedo. 
  1. Semi-Formal: Semi-Formal is a step down from cocktail. Dresses can be in varied styles, though should rest at the knee. Ties are now optional. Other options might include a pantsuit or skirt and blouse.  
  1. Destination: Destination weddings fall just below semi-formal. Clothes should still be dressy, but make sure you are also preparing yourself for the weather. 

Wear Light Fabrics

One of the best ways to prepare for a destination wedding or beach wedding guest dress code is to wear breathable and light fabrics. Cotton is always an excellent choice that can be found in sundresses, pants, and shirts alike. If you are looking for something different than cotton, try looking for nice wedding attire made from silk or linen. Even if you are attending a cocktail or black-tie destination wedding, there are still plenty of clothes made with these lightweight fabrics so you are not suffering from the heat. 

Ways To Fit A Beach Wedding Guest Dress Code 

Wedding fashion varies greatly depending on what type of wedding you are attending. But, if you’re heading to a destination wedding, you will likely have to fit a beach or destination wedding dress code. Here are some ideas of what you can wear to a beach wedding: 

Feminine Wear

A sundress is a classic option for what to wear to a destination wedding. These dresses are not only comfortable to move in, but are usually made of cotton, which makes them easier to wear in the sun. 

You could also opt for a romper, which offers a cute silhouette and can still feel both formal and casual. Make sure to opt for bright colors and patterns to complement the tropical flowers and beautiful sunshine. 

Masculine Wear

One great option for a masculine wedding outfit is a guayabera shirt. This is a type of cotton button-down shirt popular in Mexico that typically includes a pocket square and intricate lines of embroidery. These shirts are comfortable and breathable and can also connect you to your destination if you are attending a wedding in Mexico. 

You could also look for a linen suit or linen pants. While this fabric does wrinkle easily, when it is ironed well it can look incredibly sophisticated. Linen pants also look formal without the suit coat, and can be paired with a button-down or other lightweight shirt. 


Add to your wardrobe with a wide-brimmed straw hat or a pair of sunglasses. Make sure you prioritize keeping yourself cool and free of sunburn. These easy accessories can be functional, but also a great fashion choice to add to your wedding attire. 

beach wedding guest dress code

Incorporating Local Culture Into Your Wedding Outfit

The question remains, “How do I find what to wear to a destination wedding that can connect to the local culture”?  The answer is that you already have! 

Destination wedding fashion is centered around staying cool in the sun and celebrating the beauty of your landscape. That is also the way that local fashion tends to be in your destination wedding locations. In Mexico, a lot of men wear guayabera shirts because they offer comfort and help keep them cool in the sun. 

Traditional Jamaican clothing centers itself around vibrant colors, dynamic patterns, and breathable fabrics like cotton and linen. Plus, straw hats are used all throughout the country as protection from the sun. All of these elements can be found in typical destination wedding attire, too. 

If you are looking to wear clothing that resembles traditional patterns and styles of clothes from your destination wedding locale, just make sure that you are doing it respectfully. Learn about the history and tradition surrounding certain patterns and types of clothes so that when you wear them, you are celebrating their traditions instead of taking them for granted. 

Respect, honor, and understanding are the most important parts. 

weddings customs

Find The Perfect Destination 

Wedding fashion is only part of the process. When you are planning a destination wedding, you have to make sure that every step is perfect, not just your guests’ attire. At Destify, we are here to help. We create meaningful memories for our clients as we help them plan their perfect destination wedding from start to finish. 

From finding the right location to finalizing the reception menu, Destify is here to help. Our team of expert wedding planners can talk you through every part of the process and save you time and stress. Plus, our connections with our partnered resorts across the world make it so you can ask questions and learn how to incorporate local tradition and culture into your wedding with meaning and respect. 

Plan the perfect destination wedding today with Destify. 

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