Your rehearsal dinner is the first official party to kick off your wedding celebrations, and your rehearsal dinner dress will likely be the last outfit you wear before saying "I do" (unless you count your getting-ready robe). Whether you're having a casual backyard wedding or a formal black-tie affair, your rehearsal dinner dress will set the tone for your wedding weekend.
You can pick any color outfit to wear to your rehearsal dinner. While some brides may still wear white, vibrant colors or prints are also appropriate for this occasion.
When picking the best rehearsal dinner dress, let your personal style and wedding venue guide your decision-making process. You also want to choose the right material and style for the season and dress code. With these features in mind, we researched the best rehearsal dinner dresses to kick off your wedding festivities.
Best Shoulder Details
Lulus Your Sweetie White Tie-Strap Mini Dress
Size Range: XS-XL | Materials: Polyester, Spandex | Length: Mini | Colors: White
Short and sweet, this tie shoulder-strap mini dress is a stunning option for a warm-weather rehearsal dinner. The square neckline, princess-seamed bodice, and A-line skirt offer a universally flattering look for any body shape. We especially love the tiny notch detail in the skirt for a unique flair. Made from polyester and spandex, it hugs your body comfortably. Wear this with ankle-strap heels for a completed look, and make sure you style your hair up to showcase the eye-catching shoulder.
Price at time of publish: $59
Best Floral Print
V. Chapman x REVOLVE June Dress
Size Range: 00-12 | Materials: Polyester, Spandex | Length: Floor | Colors: Pink Rose Print
This floral-printed dress is as sweet as ever for the bride-to-be with a romantic aesthetic. We love that the bustier top and high slit add some boldness back into this dreamy style. It's made of lightweight satin fabric, and it has a wrap-tie closure for a more customized fit. We're picturing this at a formal garden celebration with a matching pink clutch and sandals.
Price at time of publish: $415
Lulus Absolutely Stunning White Lace Off-the-Shoulder Midi Dress
Size Range: XS-XL | Materials: Cotton, Nylon, Polyester | Length: Midi | Colors: White, Black
If you're going for a more casual look, you can never go wrong with a floral lace dress. This breezy number would be right at home at a summer, backyard, or beach wedding. The unique off-the-shoulder neckline is eye-catching and flattering, while the loose-flowing skirt offers maximum comfort.
Price at time of publish: $82
Best with Train
Sachin & Babi Dorien Dress
Size Range: 0-16 | Materials: Polyester | Length: Mini | Colors: White
This dramatic mini dress is begging to be worn to a formal rehearsal dinner. Its asymmetric hem gives way to a cascading sash for an utterly unforgettable look. It would also be remiss not to mention the gorgeous puff shoulder sleeve that adds an air of elegance to the overall design. Pair this dress with pearl earrings and white pointed heels for a timeless spring and summer look.
Price at time of publish: $398
ASOS Edition Curve Lila Satin Structured Off Shoulder Mini Wedding Dress
Size Range: 12-26 | Materials: Satin | Length: Mini | Colors: Ivory
Show off your legs and your shoulders in this off-the-shoulder mini dress. The ivory satin fabric drapes beautifully over your chest while the full skirt is fun and playful. Pair it with a choker to make the most of the romantic neckline.
Price at time of publish: $260
Best Square Neckline
Reformation Belgium Linen Dress
Size Range: 0-12 | Materials: Linen | Length: Midi | Colors: White, Blue
As romantic as it is flattering, this puff-sleeved dress is an enchanting choice for a rehearsal dinner held in a garden or backyard. The flowing skirt gives the silhouette a relaxed look, while the high slit will adds an element of sexiness to your ensemble. While we're partial to the stunning crisp white, this linen style also comes in navy and Barbiecore pink for the bold bride. Style with grass-friendly wedges and loose wavy locks for an effortless look.
Price at time of publish: $248
ELLIATT Harley Feather Trim Dress
Size Range: XS-L | Materials: Polyester | Length: Midi | Colors: Ivory
Nothing says it's time to celebrate like a feather-trimmed dress! As fun as it is versatile, this Elliat dress works well for all seasons and can easily be worn for a number of occasions. Wear yours with shoulder-dusting earrings to highlight your shoulders and the delicate straps.
Price at time of publish: $200
BHLDN Cali Satin Cowl-Neck Midi Slip Dress
Size Range: 0-22 | Materials: Satin | Length: Midi | Colors: 14
What could be more timeless than this elegant slip dress? This style boasts a flattering cowl neckline and side slit and comes in over 10 gorgeous colors to complement any bridal style. You can dress it up and down for both formal and casual affairs, making it a versatile choice that you could use far beyond your rehearsal dinner. Made from polyester, it's lightweight and breathable. Pair it with statement jewelry for a bolder look.
Price at time of publish: $168
Retrofete Gabrielle Sequin Robe
Size Range: XS-XL | Materials: Viscose | Length: Mini | Colors: White, Gold
What says sexy more than this shimmering sequin mini dress? The wrap silhouette lends a flattering, plunging v-neckline and an adjustable fit thanks to the velvet waist tie. Although the fabric is weighted and thicker than other options on this list, its short length still makes it ideal for warmer venues. Pair it with a bold clutch and colorful heels for an even more dramatic look.
Price at time of publish: $675
Lulus Elegant Love Champagne Satin Tie-Back Wide-Leg Jumpsuit
Size Range: XS-XL | Materials: Polyester, Spandex | Length: Floor Length | Colors: Champagne
The rehearsal dinner is a great time to experiment with different colors and styles. Coming in satin, this champagne jumpsuit still feels formal enough for a wedding celebration. We love the juxtaposition of the high neckline and open tie-back with an oversized bow. Your guests will be toasting you and this outfit.
Price at time of publish: $78
Best for Garden Party
Self-Portrait Grosgrain-Trimmed Guipure Lace Midi Dress
Size Range: UK6-14 | Materials: Polyester | Length: Midi | Colors: White
For an all-over lace style that doesn't feel overly stuffy or ornate, opt for this dress crafted from graphic and refreshingly modern lace. The clean floral pattern doesn't feel too busy or dated, and the square neckline is particularly flattering. It has a hidden zip closure on the back for a seamless look, and it's made from lightweight polyester for a cool and comfortable fit. Its midi silhouette makes it a great option for both casual and formal events during the spring and summer. Style this with a dainty necklace, heels, and a clutch.
Price at time of publish: $525
Best for a NYE Wedding
ASOS Edition Paillette Fringe Sequin Cami Shift Mini Dress
Size Range: 0-14 | Materials: Beads, Sequins | Length: Mini | Colors: Silver
Nothing says celebration quite like this dazzling sequined dress. This party-ready style is ideal for New Year's Eve nuptials and can easily be worn to your rehearsal dinner or after-party. The plunging neckline and open back add a sexy touch, while the the silver hue is a nice step away from wearing all white. Throw on some silver heels for a monochromatic look.
Price at time of publish: $260
Bernadette Sacha Dress
Size Range: 2-12 | Materials: Cotton, Elastane | Length: Mini | Colors: Ivory, Black
What could be more fun than this satin mini dress featuring an open back lined with an oversized bow? For the bride seeking out a style that doesn't feel overly feminine or overly modern, this dress embodies the best of both worlds. Made of crisp taffeta with an off-shoulder and mini silhouette, this is the ideal pick for a rehearsal dinner on a warm summer night. We also love the floral corsage in the center for an extra unique touch. Style this with vibrant-colored heels for a fashion-forward look.
Price at time of publish: $370
Best Long Sleeve
Reformation Maves Dress
Size Range: XS-XL | Materials: Satin | Length: Mini | Colors: Almond, Black
Elegant and silky, this Reformation dress is undeniably eye-catching. Boasting a structured yet fluid silhouette, the Maves dress features a daring off-the-shoulder neckline, long sleeves, and a flirty mini hemline. We love this look for a chic city wedding.
Price at time of publish: $298
Best Blazer Style
Tadashi Shoji Sabine Plunge V-Neck Twist-Front Long-Sleeve Mini Dress
Size Range: XS-4X | Materials: Polyester, Spandex | Length: Mini | Colors: Ivory
If you live for a good blazer, you'll love this blazer-inspired mini dress. The slightly puffed shoulders and plunging neckline create a sharp silhouette while the ruching flatters your waistline. It's an excellent choice for any petite bride who wants to elongate their figure.
Price at time of publish: $435
Fame and Partners Strappy Tri Cup Gown
Size Range: 0-22 | Materials: Satin | Length: Floor | Colors: 6
Get your Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy on with this chic and timeless satin slip dress. With a floor-length silhouette, we think this dress could work for any wedding, from a winter venue to a whimsical beach wedding. This dress is made to measure, so it's ideal for tall brides, petite brides, and every bride in between. The triangle cups and fitted waist give it a tailored look, while the thigh-high slit and open back add in some extra drama. While we're partial to this ivory color, it's available in vibrant summer shades, pastel spring shades, and jewel winter shades, so you can find one that's fitting for any season.
Price at time of publish: $389
Best for a Winter Wedding
Ronny Kobo Astrid Sequined Dress
Size Range: XS-XL | Materials: Polyester, Spandex | Length: Midi | Colors: Ivory
This party-ready dress is embellished with sparkly sequins for a seriously statement-making look. It has long leg-of-mutton sleeves with an asymmetric-cinched detailing down the front of the skirt for extra glamour. Meanwhile, the keyhole back and center slits add in some serious drama. Its maxi silhouette makes this pick great for a fall or winter wedding. Made from polyester and spandex, it will feel comfortable and lightweight all night.
Price at time of publish: $578
LoveShackFancy Norma Midi Dress
Size Range: 00-14 | Materials: Cotton | Length: Ankle | Colors: White
Ideal for a spring or summer wedding, this boho-style dress is complete with all-over dot and floral embroidery. While we love the white detailing, you can also choose blue, lilac, pink, and black options as well. Flutter sleeves and a flounce skirt make it extra dreamy. Plus, the 100 percent cotton construction makes it breathable.
Price at time of publish: $595
Best for a Destination Wedding
Bronx and Banco Tiffany Blanc Dress
Size Range: XS-XL | Materials: Polyester, Elastane | Length: Midi | Colors: White
Feminine and lacy, we love this dress for a destination wedding. The ruffled hem, lace straps, and transparent skirt lend a whimsical look that goes with the flow. Elevate the look even more by wearing a colorful block heel or a statement earring. A bold-colored clutch wouldn't hurt either.
Price at time of publish: $336
What to Look for in a Rehearsal Dinner Outift
Just like your guests, you should go by your dress code when picking a rehearsal dinner dress. If you are hosting a black-tie dinner, stick to floor length gowns and luxurious fabrics like satin and silk. Fame & Partners Strappy Tri-Cup Gown checks off both of those boxes. For cocktail or less formal dress codes, you can experiment with mini hemlines and casual silhouettes like sundresses. We love Lulus Absolutely Stunning Lace Dress for a laidback beach wedding.
For summer brides, dresses with shorter hemlines in breezy fabrics like cotton, linen, and lightweight silk always look effortlessly chic. With its spaghetti straps and sheer lace design, Bronx and Banco Tiffany Dress is ideal for spring or summer wedding. If you're planning a winter wedding, consider long sleeve jumpsuits, crisp tuxedo suits, or beaded dresses. Made from silver sparkles, ASOS Edition Cami Shift dress is ideal for a wedding around the winter holiday season.
Do I have to wear a dress to my rehearsal dinner?
Absolutely not! You should wear whatever makes you feel the most stylish and confident. Some great alternatives to rehearsal dinner dresses are jumpsuits, rompers, and suits. Lulus Satin Champagne Jumpsuit is utterly elegant.
Do I have to wear white to my rehearsal dinner?
Definitely not! While some brides may choose to wear white to their rehearsal dinner, others may opt for dresses in vibrant colors or prints–what you wear is entirely up to you! For instance, you can go with a subtle floral print, like in the June Dress.
Can I wear a formal dress to my rehearsal dinner?
Yes! Formal styles like simple slip dresses, floor-length gowns, and fitted sheath silhouettes are all stunning options for a rehearsal dinner look–especially if you're throwing a formal or black-tie wedding.
Why Trust Brides
Contributing writer Sophie Moore is a former fashion editor at Brides and is an expert in all things bridal attire, from couture wedding gowns to the perfect "something blue" accessory. She researches and sources the best fashion items for brides, grooms, wedding guests, bridal parties, and more.