A garden or outdoor wedding is certainly on trend now. With Covid restrictions and ongoing concerns regarding the spread of Covid, an outdoor setting makes a lot of sense. If you have decided that this is what you want for your big day, then let’s talk dress code.

Setting a dress code for your wedding is not about being bossy and telling people what to wear, it is about making your guests aware of what is appropriate for the site so they feel comfortable on the day.

There are lots of options for an outdoor wedding – the beach, a park, a private garden, a mountain top or deep in the bush.


Once you have your site there are few things to consider – is the ground level, is there easy access (don’t forget about your  guests that may have mobility issues), what time of the day your wedding is being held and in what season. All these things will help you to choose the right dress code that will have your guest dressed appropriately, feeling comfortable and enjoying the celebrations.

Make sure you put the dress code, and any other tips (like “if it is wet, wear gumboots or at least bring a change of shoes”) clearly on your wedding invitations or wedding website. That way everybody has the same information!

A smart casual or semi-formal dress code is ideal for an outdoor wedding. It is possibly one of the most enjoyable dress codes to have for a wedding celebration. Without the formality of an indoor wedding, it allows your guests to be that little more casual and relaxed.

For the women it can means a soft romantic look, or maybe bright florals or light floaty fabrics. These are especially gorgeous for a daytime event. It could mean a below-the-knee dress or a dressy skirt and top or an elegant pantsuit. Be certain to tell them that relaxed shoes are appropriate – stilettos can be downright dangerous in an outdoor setting, whereas wedges or dressy flats will certainly be easier on the ankles.

For the blokes, it will be a dress code they will enjoy. No suits required here, a nice shirt and smart pants with a casual pair of loafers is more the vibe.

It really comes down to what you want your big day to feel like. If it is relaxed and enjoyable, then go with the dress code that is appropriate for that.

Generally, for a garden or outdoor wedding smart casual is the way to go.