Half of my friends are already planning their weddings while the other half are about to get engaged. (Okay, not quite that many, but it feels like it!) I’m thrilled for them, but also truly terrified—where did the time go?? And more importantly, what do I wear? Thankfully, I've found 23 eye-catching dresses to slip on for the upcoming nuptials, across a range of budgets and styles. And, I've rounded them up here for all of us to browse through, because I know I’m not alone in my hunt for a full-on wedding guest wardrobe.
This satin wrap dress is like a cat—it has nine lives. It can be resurrected for any occasion, from weddings and bridal showers to your company’s summer party. The light peachy hue is also perfect for someone who wants a little bit of color but nothing overwhelmingly bright.
Fans of Amur will recognize the uniqueness of its sustainable pieces crafted in the heart of NYC. This elegant floral printed gown, with its draped asymmetrical skirt and cutout at the waist, will stun everyone at the party. You may just be best dressed (right after the bride).
Bless the friends who throw backyard weddings, so we don't have to overthink our outfits. Grab your favorite floral dress (perhaps it's this one from J.Crew?) and throw on some sandals for the easiest look you'll put together this wedding season.
Featuring a print that evokes the feeling of frolicking in the English countryside, this romantic dress has a fitted bodice and flowing skirt. It's a good Instagram, guaranteed.
When choosing your wedding guest dress, be mindful of the reception location. If it's outside, keep cool as you dance the night away in a slip dress with an open back, like this one. The orange color will complement your summer tan too.
Celebrate being seated at a table with your boyfriend's grandmother in a dress that's demure but not dowdy. This wrap dress is bright, loud, and silky. Featuring a side-tie waist and draping sleeves that slightly puff at the top, it's also super flattering.
I'm all for effortless dressing and, damn, if this style from Finders Keepers isn't the definition of that. The thin straps and slit details aren't flamboyant, but rather, provide a delicate, feminine touch.
Find the middle ground between showing off your shoulders and keeping them covered with a one-shoulder design. This asymmetrical number from Iro has a romantic floral print and airy skirt—because that cocktail hour outdoors in Florida is guaranteed to be humid.
Summer weddings call for pastel hues so embrace the color palette with this on-trend prairie dress in light blue. I love this number from Copenhagen-based brand Samsøe & Samsøe's spring 2019 collection. You’ll feel like a retro European in no time.
This dress features a scrunched and supportive bodice, a neckline that does great things for collar bones, and a flowing asymmetrical skirt. Editorial note: I've owned this dress for about a month and it's quickly become the only thing I want to wear when I need to look spiffy...but want to feel that pajama-level comfort.
Channel Kate Middleton in this cobalt blue coat dress that falls just above the knee. The dress is polished and sophisticated thanks to the collar and belt around the waist. Pair with Jimmy Choo heels (and maybe a fascinator).
This playful cinched-waist Wilfred dress comes in eight (I repeat, eight) different colors, so you can buy it in every shade and wear it 'til death do you part. Go with lavender if the ceremony is outdoors or resort to black if the event's more formal.
Attending a wedding on a farm or ranch? Rock a milkmaid dress to be on your best bohemian a-game. Dôen's “sol” dress is a romantic, cotton option featuring a square v-neck that accentuates the collar bones. A bonus: You can hand wash this!
This red-hot gown can be styled and re-style to your heart's desire, thanks to the customizable halter neck. It'll feel like a new dress every time you wear it! Other show-stopping designs? Peep the plunging neckline and contrasting purple straps.
This floor-length, thin strapped dress masters understated glamour. Made in a forgiving scuba material, it'll be a flattering choice to don at formal weddings.
This gown looks complicated, but that's all an optical illusion. Everyone will be talking about the unique style during cocktail hour, then you can comfortably shimmy in peace (no straps sliding down!) on the dance floor all night long.
A classic black dress that can be worn a hundred times is always a good idea. Here, a particularly brilliant one from French label Rouje with lace details and a universally flattering silhouette.
I've been coveting this ruffled beauty, featuring a small and centered ribcage cutout for weeks. What I love most about this dress is its silky elegance and its funky pattern with a loose fit, so I can mingle and groove in comfort. The unique floral blooms are also a refreshing break from the micro daisies that seem to be everywhere.
Love this feminine spring 2019 spin on tie-dye. The pleated, crepe number from A.L.C.. features cutouts at the waist that allow for a partially open back. This dress will automatically win you the unspoken best-dressed guest award.
This dress's unique smocked top makes it a savvy choice for the girl with a busy calendar and a tight budget, as it can be worn various ways. Off the shoulder? Check. An edgy one-shoulder look? Check. Criss-crossed? Yup, it can do that too.
The colorful lines on this scallop hemmed dress are giving me major 13 Going on 30 vibes. Remember the scene where Jennifer Garner gets everyone dancing to “Thriller” and she’s wearing the rainbow striped dress? Bring that same lively energy to the dance floor, but perhaps to a song like Ariana Grande’s “Thank U, Next” because it is 2019.
The number of “Save the Dates” on your fridge are multiplying quickly, so budget is at the top of mind. This dress is affordable (you're not misreading that…the price is literally less than $10), and stylish, which makes it a must-have. I love the hanging shoulder strap details.
Navy, the alternative flattering color to your go-to little black dress. Its classic hue and silhouette mean that it will work for the array of dress codes on your docket: garden, cocktail, black-tie optional—you name it! Just let your accessories take the spotlight. I recommend pairing .
For more stories like this, including celebrity news, beauty and fashion advice, savvy political commentary, and fascinating features, sign up for the Carte-Mere newsletter.