The Wedding Guest’s Dress Guide with Georgia Hardinge

When it comes to weddings, there are lots of things for the guests to think about too. What to give, what to eat, how to get there, where to stay, and most importantly… what to wear. Ladies, don’t worry. Here at Zankyou, we’ve got you covered.

It’s safe to say we LOVE giving brides advice about destination weddings, honeymoons and finding the perfect dress, but we can’t forget about those who make every wedding worth the planning hassle: the guests. So we have interviewed top British designer, Georgia Hardinge, about how to dress for a wedding either at home or abroad.

Georgia Hardinge SS16

Georgia Hardinge emerged onto the scene in 2010, incorporating her creative passion for innovative technology and sculptural design into one unique style.

Hardinge has since collaborated with Victoria’s Secret, River Island and Lancôme to name a few, and her sculptural couture mask was exhibited in the Victoria and Albert Museum alongside designers such as Chloé, Dior and Burberry. Georgia Hardinge’s years of experience in art, design and fashion makes her the perfect person to give us a little advice for dressing to impress at a friend’s wedding.

Georgia Hardinge for River Island

What is the first thing a guest should think about when planning her outfit for an upcoming wedding?

“First things first, what season is the wedding in? Will you need a jacket? A lightweight outfit so as not to get too hot? An umbrella? All of these factors are crucial in your decision making, the worst thing is feeling uncomfortable on what should be a special day.”

Georgia Hardinge AW16

“I would also say that to dress well, every woman must know their own body shape and what styles flatter their figure, this will ensure you feel confident and relaxed.”

What colour palette would you recommend to a guest? 

“Colour is one of the most important aspects for your wedding outfit, although it very much depends on your skin tone and shade of hair. What you wear should always complement your features, such as by bringing out your eye colour or by flattering your skin and hair tones.”

Georgia Hardinge SS16

“Again, season comes into play here, it’s always fun to wear vibrant colours in Summer and pastels in Spring, whilst darker palettes are easier to get away with in the colder months.”

Georgia Hardinge AW15

 For weddings in more unpredictable weather, such as an Autumn or Winter Wedding, how would you advise to dress stylishly while being prepared? 

“A pashmina is my most important accessory for unpredictable weather. They are so easy to throw over an outfit. Cashmere pashminas add extra warmth whilst feeling soft on the skin.

Many designers will sell jackets that match the theme of their collections, or provide co-ordinates. If you would prefer to bring a jacket, I would opt for a light trench or blazer that will provide enough warmth for the occasion whilst still looking sleek and formal. If you suspect a chance of rain, maxi dresses can get ruined if they drag accross a wet floor. Go for a cropped length outfit to avoid dry cleaning bills.”

Georgia Hardinge SS15

As a sculptural label, your work is unique and inventive. How would you advise a guest to dress creatively enough to stand out – but without upstaging the bride?

“The dress options available for wedding guests are endless these days, with so many incredible designers offering occasionwear. I personally like to wear something that is special.”

Georgia Hardinge AW14

“The styling of an outfit is always important too. If you just so happen to end up wearing the same outfit as another party guest, it’s always good to feel confident in the fact that you have styled it in your own unique way.

When it comes to not upstaging the bride, the only rule is that you shouldn’t wear white. Ever. Other than that, don’t worry about going too bold, your friend will love to see you looking stylish and making an effort for her special day!”

Georgia Hardinge: “White looks great at a summer party or event, but not at a wedding”

Georgia Hardinge’s perfect wedding guest outfit:

 “I have attended many friends’ weddings this year and have found myself favouring dresses that cascade fluidly over the feminine figure with an ethereal quality. Delicate fabrics are both lovely and elegant.

I never shy away from colour and have found myself drawn to pastel tones recently, particularly over Summer. Of course, as it’s my brand aesthetic, pleated garments are a staple for me. The pleats that I create for my own collections are bespoke and unique, making each item special.

So the perfect wedding outfit for me would incorporate both feminine tones and structural pleats.”

Georgia Hardinge SS16

 For a Destination Wedding:

Our magazine is full of advice for all those daring enough to jet off and tie the knot abroad with their loved ones. But a destination wedding, for guests, just means an even tougher decision on what to wear.

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As a well-travelled designer with an international background, what would be your advice for guests who are going to their friend’s destination wedding? What would you suggest to pack and to wear?

 “For a sunny destination, a lightweight outfit that is breathable. A kaftan is always good to pack for styling or covering up in the evenings without providing too much warmth. If it is a city break destination, a lightweight jacket or shawl is always useful for unpredictable weather.

Over summer I attended my friend’s destination wedding in Sicily and wore a long, pleated maxi dress with a cape style sleeve. In the hot weather it was perfect and floor length styles are effortless without too much styling needed.”

Georgia Hardinge SS17

So, with top advice from Georgia Hardinge, along with the increasing variety of beautiful occasionwear out there, you can really enjoy your friend’s special day while feeling confident and stylish.

For more guest dress inspiration, check out our anticipated international trends for 2017

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