Best Dressed Guest: Say I Do to Rue La La’s Winter Wedding Wonderland

Tis the season…wedding season, that is! 2020 may have been the year of the micro-wedding, but 2021 is shaping up to be the year of the Party.

Whether it’s a postponed reception from folks who legally tied the knot in 2020, or a full on post-pandemic family+friends ceremony, the 2021 Winter Wedding season is booming…and the invites are flowing.

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If you’re finding yourself in a current conundrum of wedding wardrobe paralysis…we’ve got great news for you. Rue La La has an entire of armada of gorgeous gowns and fabulous frocks that will have you voted Best Dressed Guest hands down. And the best part is, they’re at prices that won’t have you weeping in the champagne.

With so much to choose from, it can be overwhelming, so deep breath. Our Editors at SLH are here to help! We dove head first into all these wonderous options and come up with our favorite 15 choices, broken down into the major top trending wedding types – Formal, Cocktails, Rustic and Destination.

Ready to join the party? Let’s dance!

FORMAL FABULOUSNESS

After over a year of couch surfing in our sweats, the idea of dressing to the nines is coming back in force. Many brides, having missed out on their storybook wedding bliss in order to settle for a court house ceremony, are getting all giddy with the idea of a blow-out bash. If your invite calls for full-on formal, never fear! We’ve got an array of sparkly to satin to shine which will have you channeling your inner disney princess…

Alexia Admor, Ruched Shimmer Gown $99.99 (reg. $265)

Formal usually means long, but that doesn’t mean you can’t show a little leg. This shimmering dark green gown from Alexia Admor with it’s asymmetrical high cut slit will have you flashing your glorious gams to every move on the dance floor.

JS Collections, Embroidered Gown $149.99 (reg. $268)

With sumptuous embroidered detailing all over this midnight blue beauty, it may seem like a dream that it could be for the taking at under $150. Well, wake up and seize the moment because today dreams come true…

Rene Ruiz, Off-The-Shoulder Draped Gown $279.99 (reg. $1625)

We’re loving the sweetheart neckline and bodice ruching of this luscious raspberry gown. Your choice if you prefer to wear it off the shoulder, or no.

JS Collections, Plus Cowl Neck Sequin Gown $99.99 (reg. $440)

Channel some Great Gatsby with this ballet slipper pink gown covered in oodles of beautiful beading. Available in sizes from 14W up to 22W.

ROMANTICALLY RUSTIC

Wondering which wedding style is Number 1 in 2021? Well, here it is. Rustic can be barn/farm rural, a sweeping garden getaway or even just a little vintage-meets-eclectic Boho. While the goal of such an event is to “lighten up” a stuffy dress code, this can often be tricky to interpret. Our advice? Go for flowy fabrics that move with you in easy silhouettes that aren’t too overly tailored. Here are some great examples…

ML Monique Lhuillier, Floral Mesh Gown $249.99

A mesh overlay and flower appliques create a gown of pure romance that will look amazing in a rustic setting.

Hale Bob, Maxi Dress $117.99 (reg. $295)

This floaty floral embodies the easy flow of Boho to an absolute T (as in “Take it now before it’s gone!)

Johnny Was, Sucre Silk Maxi Dress $135.99 (reg. $335)

Dark vintage florals get an ethereal upgrade on wistful sheer fabric. Ultra-feminine and ready to party.

CAPTIVATING COCKTAILS

Continuing with the more non-traditional reception themes, who needs a cake when you can have cocktails? Some blissful couples would rather focus less on the traditional dinner and get straight to the dancing and the drinks. There should be some appetizers for you to nibble on but a word of advice when attending events like this – have a light meal beforehand just in case. As for what to wear? This is the perfect opportunity to shift into sexy mode. So flaunt some leg, bare a shoulder (or two) and show this crowd your dance moves are straight fire.

Trina Turk, Enjoyment Cocktail Dress $103 (reg. $328)

Bring on the bling with this sequined, gorgeous garnet number. We love the detailing of the blousy sleeves and slight bubble shirt bottom that take a simple silhouette and make it fresh.

RtA, Lana Cocktail Dress $219.99 (reg. $595)

This deconstruction dress is boldly modern and made for the woman who loves her fashion forward.

Atoir, The Luna Cocktail Dress $119.99 (reg. $295)

Puff sleeve perfection is a fitting description of this sexy silver dress. The juxtaposition of the shorter skirt and the asymmetrical side splice add sophisticated visual interest that takes this dress next level.

Donna Morgan, Cocktail Dress $49.99 (reg. $118)

A classically elegant silhouette, this one-shouldered wonder can easily work for cocktails, or dinner or date night on the town.

DELIGHTFUL DESTINATION

Having had the time to think and plan about it (like, a lot of time) many brides and grooms are rolling their honeymoon wishes into their wedding ceremonies. Destination weddings aren’t cheap, but they do offer a great escape…usually to a much warmer local. One of the biggest bonuses about having a destination wedding is it allows a much greater opportunity to keep things outdoors. This is one of the many reasons that destination weddings are once again surging in popularity once more.

If you’re lucky enough to score this type of wedding invite, get yourself packing and don’t forget to bring outfits that can handle the warmer climes.

N Natori, Floral Dress $49.99 (reg. $179)

If the weather reads warm, but the invite still says semi-formal, show up in this chic citron dress from N Natori.

Michael Kors, Cascade Silk Gown $559 (reg. $3993)

Looking for something fun and floaty to catch the breeze but not result in a Marylin Monroe moment? This black and rosewood silk gown from Michael Kors is your answer, and seriously you cannot beat the price at 86% off this couture darling.

Wayf, Adeline Ruffle Neck Wrap Dress $79.99 (reg. $168)

Will the ceremony be on the sand? If so, keep your cool with a lighter colored, easy-breathing fabric gown. This ruffled wrap dress by Wayf is a splendid choice.

Adrianna Papell, Beaded Sheath Dress $129.99 (reg. $279)

Crystal beading over lovely lilac-colored flowers, this short dress is ideal when the temperatures are really rising but you’re not ready to stop the music.

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