How to Dress for Tropical Wedding

Updated 01/08/16

Photo by Ramón Redondo of El Marco Rojo

Choosing an outfit for a tropical destination wedding is a lot of fun for and the possibilities — both in color and fabric selection — are endless.

Here are some tips to help you pull your wedding outfit together:

Guayabera shirts almost always count as appropriate wedding attire in the tropics. These short-sleeved, button-down shirts usually have decorative square pockets, and often have embroidery. They're available in a huge variety of colors and styles — just Google "guayabera" and see what you find. Most designer labels also have their own version of the guayabera, if you're looking for something a little fancier.

Although linen shirts and pants are fashionable, be cautious in selecting them when you're travelling. Linen usually wrinkles easily, and there may not be a drycleaner to press it back out in a more remote destination.

Light-weight, light-colored pants should be checked out in front of a mirror with a bright light behind you before you decide to wear them to a sunset wedding. Nothing is more hysterical — and horrifying — than having certain things highlighted and backlit. Oh yes, it does show in the pictures, too.

Don't wear shorts unless specifically instructed to do so. The "beach chic" look can be fun, but only if that's what the wedding couple wanted to see in the formal photos of their guests.

If you tend to sweat very heavily, choose a patterned shirt or a darker color for the main event. Sweat stains aren't attractive in wedding photos, and if you're someplace hot and humid, it might look worse than usual.

Remember, always err on the dressier side of caution. If you're not sure if what you're planning to wear is dressy enough, it's probably not. Upgrade it a notch and you're certain to be just fine.

Sandy Malone is the owner of Sandy Malone Weddings & Events, a full-service traditional and destination wedding planning company and Do-It-Yourself wedding planning consulting service for DIY brides and grooms based in the Washington, DC area. Sandy is the star of TLC's reality show "Wedding Island," about her destination wedding planning company, Weddings in Vieques. Sandy's book "How to Plan Your Own Destination Wedding: Do-It-Yourself Tips from an Experienced Professional," will be released on March 1st, but is available online for pre-orders now where books are sold.

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