The Wedding Guest Dilemma - How to Look Stylish on a Budget

Who doesn’t love a good wedding? They are a huge part of the British summer culture. Whether you’re the bride or not, chances are if you’ve got the invite you’re already wondering what to wear.

Did you know the average cost of a wedding guest outfit comes in at a whopping £120 – and I’m sure most of us have spent much more. This need to have a brand new outfit for special occasions is just not justified!

It isn’t that you shouldn’t want to look your best, but you should spend accordingly. Most occasion wear outfits are worn only once, perhaps two or three times if you’re lucky.  I’ve seen it a million times when I go into clients’ wardrobes – they’ve got their beloved bold print Coast skirt hanging in a dust bag while they’re buying jeans from the supermarket.

Now wouldn’t it make sense to flip that on it’s head? I firmly believe in spending your money on the clothes you get the most wear of (resulting in a better cost-per-wear), and being frugal with those one hit wonders.

To help you out, I’ve pulled together a few different options for savvy wedding guest outfits. I wanted to keep this simple so I’ve chosen all items from three highstreet shops, that I regularly buy my clothes from – M&S, H&M and ASOS.

It’s important that these items don’t just hang in that dust bag in the not-so-accessible part of your wardrobe, so they are items that can be dressed up or down. And all clothing is under £40 (a few shoes are over, oops)!

 

The Capsule Collection

 

The summer I got married we attended NINE weddings. So on top of the most expensive day (err, weekend) of our lives and the ‘most important’ dress ever, I had to come up with eight other outfits. It was an expensive summer to say the least.

If I had known then what I know now, I’d have planned it much better and pulled together a small capsule wardrobe to mix and match.

If you’ve got five or more weddings this capsule will suit you perfectly.

Take three tops, two skirts and a pair of wide leg trousers. And here you get seven unique outfits. All items that can be worn for not-so-special occasions too. And the total for these SIX items is the same as the average spend on one outfit! 

 Strappy vest, H&M, £12.99

Strappy vest, H&M, £12.99

 Bardot top, H&M, £17.99

Bardot top, H&M, £17.99

 Navy cami, H&M, £17.99

Navy cami, H&M, £17.99

 Midi skirt, H&M, £39.99

Midi skirt, H&M, £39.99

 Wide leg trousers, M&S, £15

Wide leg trousers, M&S, £15

 Cargo skirt, H&M, £19.99

Cargo skirt, H&M, £19.99

I’ve added in shoes (see below) to suit but you could get away with a tan or nude strappy sandal with all the outfits.

 

The key here is choosing wisely. I’ve got one pop of colour (red) and two neutrals, navy and cream/white. This makes mixing and matching possibilities aplenty!

 

Dresses under £40


Another option (if you don’t want a lot of options) is the simple dress. Here are five of my favourites, all under £40...

 A simple stylish wrap dress. ASOS Design, £30

A simple stylish wrap dress. ASOS Design, £30

 Bright, bold and easy to accessorise. ASOS Design, £30 

Bright, bold and easy to accessorise. ASOS Design, £30 

 Make a sheer, scene-stealing statement. ASOS, £38

Make a sheer, scene-stealing statement. ASOS, £38

 Perfect for a garden party. Boohoo, £40

Perfect for a garden party. Boohoo, £40

 Because you know I love leopard print! ASOS Design, £38

Because you know I love leopard print! ASOS Design, £38

 

Show-stopping shoes


Lastly, remember you don’t need to buy a whole new outfit! Pull out something you wore a few years ago and update it with new shoes and accessories. M&S are doing some amazing things in footwear at the moment. These are my most wearable picks…

 Make a statement with a bold colour. M&S, £19.50

Make a statement with a bold colour. M&S, £19.50

 The go-with-everything stiletto. M&S, £49.50

The go-with-everything stiletto. M&S, £49.50

 The stylish (and comfortable) sandal. M&S, £39.50

The stylish (and comfortable) sandal. M&S, £39.50

 The must-have mules. M&S, £35

The must-have mules. M&S, £35

 The fashionista's favourite. M&S, £35

The fashionista's favourite. M&S, £35

And don’t forget to accessorise. Again M&S are doing some amazing accessories at the moment - whether you want a bold statement necklace or simple gold hoops.

Have you got your wedding guest outfit sorted? If you need help building your very own capsule collection or want to find that show-stopper, get in touch