| Ask The Style Chefs: Weddings Archives

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Q. I am in a wedding later this month in which I am part of the “house party” or, as I like to call it, the “B-Team Bridesmaids.” Luckily, we can pick out our own dresses - the bride just asks that they all be solid black, around knee-length, and free of anything too flashy like beading or sequins. This will be the first time I see my ex after a terrible break-up six months (and 30 lbs) ago, so I really want to look GREAT. Please help me find a simple, stylish, and extremely flattering LBD! I definitely don’t want to show too much skin at my friend’s wedding, but I’d love to find something a bit sexy, like a one-shoulder, strapless, or halter neckline. What do you think? Where is the line between looking hot at a wedding and looking inappropriate?

A. Congrats on the dramatic weight loss! Here are some little black dresses to “wow” your ex - sexy, yet tasteful enough to wear to your friend’s wedding:


Q. Help! I’ve been searching for earrings to wear to my wedding next month and I haven’t been able to find the right fit. It’s an outdoor, garden-style wedding and I’m wearing a narrow strapless ivory lace dress. I plan on having my hair up in a loose, romantic updo. Do you have any suggestions? I love these, but haven’t been able to find something similar.

A. We love an elegant dangling earring with a romantic updo and Taylor Swift’s waterfall chandelier earrings below are a perfect choice. We found several earrings with a similar feel in a range of prices:

Q. I bought this little dress for an upcoming wedding that I will attend. How do I pull the look together with accessories without going over the top and looking too trendy? I was hoping to wear a pair of nude or beige shoes. What about a necklace or bracelet? Can the style chefs help me whip up a winning (and timeless) combo?

A. Colorful, printed and asymmetrical - a trio of trends in one chic little dress! Let the dress be the star of your look and choose neutral accessories in colors like nude, bone and gold. Skip the necklace (too fussy with the asymmetrical neckline) and opt for dramatic drop earrings and a chic gold cuff instead. Gold or nude shoes and a neutral evening clutch complete the look.

Q. I got engaged recently and my fiance I have decided to invite our friends and family to a small and casual reception in the late summer.

In light of the current economic conditions and our desire to keep things as simple as possible, I’ve decided to purchase a white (or whitish shade) dress that can be worn for other occasions in lieu of an expensive gown that can only be worn once.

My conservative family, however, has a big influence on my dress choice - while sleeveless is okay, anything strapless or with spaghetti straps is out of the question (one shoulder is probably pushing it too!). Do you have any suggestions that are around knee length (a little higher is okay) in a fabric dressier than cotton or a jersey blend? I’m struggling to find a classy and simple dress with unique details that won’t rock the boat. Please help - I would really appreciate any of your suggestions!

A. We love the idea of a small, casual wedding reception and your desire to wear a simple white dress that can be worn again. Not only is this practical, but it is the epitome of recessionista chic. The search for an affordable dress that is not cotton, not spaghetti straps and not strapless, that is special enough to be worn by a bride was tougher than we thought! We were able to find some great options for you though, so take a look:


Q. My niece is getting married in 7 weeks and my sister, mother of the bride wants to wear a more casual dress for the church at 1:30 and then her mother of the bride dress for the reception at 6:00 pm. I believe she should wear the mother of the bride dress to the church and reception because of pictures at the church (mother walking down the aisle, lighting the candles etc.). I have never been to a wedding where the mother of the bride did not have her dress on all day. What do you think?

_5817048.jpg.jpegA. Even though the evening reception is the “fun” part of the wedding, it’s important to remember that the ceremony is the focal point of the day. Since the bride and bridesmaids will be dressed in their beautiful gowns, and the groom and ushers will likely be wearing tuxedos or suits, the mother of the bride should wear her special dress to walk down the aisle as well. You are correct that there will be plenty of pictures of this very special and memorable occasion and the ceremony is where everyone “gets dressed”.

For the reception, many times a bride will change from her wedding gown into a less formal party dress so she can dance and mingle in more comfortable attire. Of course, the mother of the bride is welcome to change also.

So, if your sister plans to wear two dresses, she should reserve the formal dress for the ceremony and the more casual dress to the reception.

(dress shown here: Calvin Klein Stretch Satin Dress with Jacket, $198 at

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