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Being invited to a wedding can be very exciting. Beyond the hubbub of seeing a couple get hitched, which is fine and dandy, it gives you an excuse to update your wardrobe. Before you go out looking for formal attire in the latest trend, however,  there are some things you should know. For example, there are very off-putting colors for people to wear to a wedding as a guest. You can avoid the embarrassment that comes with making a social faux pas by preparing in advance for your shopping trip. With a little time and patience, it's easy to choose colors that are socially acceptable to everyone who'll be attending the soiree.

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White

It’s very bad form to wear the same color as the bride. It’s the one color that is 100 percent unavailable to guests. The bride wants all eyes on her, not someone who she invited to watch her get hitched. If you wear patterned clothing to the wedding, make sure that it’s not predominantly white. Suppose there is a small amount of white present in the garment, no worries. If the clothing is white with a pattern on it, save it for another occasion. You’ll have plenty of time to enjoy wearing it elsewhere.

Fashionable beautiful big red handbag on the arm of the girl in a fashionable white dress and sneakers, posing near the wall on a warm summer night. Warm color. alexalenin / Getty Images
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Ivory

It’s not a competition — no one but the bride should be wearing a color such as ivory, eggshell, or off-white. That goes for the bridal party and guests because it takes the focus off the couple getting married, which is very rude. Many brides find that the dresses they choose are described as ivory by the retailer they buy them from before their wedding day. It’s easy to see why you should be discouraged from wearing any shade of white to a wedding. Even if it isn’t bright white, it doesn’t necessarily sit well with the couple getting married.

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Champagne or gold

Some couples may opt to go with a slightly darker shade for their wedding attire, so champagne and gold are two colors that are considered acceptable for people getting married to wear at modern weddings. Silver is another color that you can check off your list of wedding don’ts. It's not uncommon for a wedding party to use metallic colors as part of their ensemble. Yes, that means that all the flash belongs to them.

fashionable stylish woman with Boho long sleeve Maxi dress and accessories outdoor with flowers.
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Pale Pastels

The lightest of pastels often look too close to white in photographs. That’s why guests are advised not to wear them. Instead, choose a color that complements the couple’s color scheme without clashing too much or looking like you’re a part of the wedding party. Leave the pastels for the bridal party and groomsmen whose attire gets approved by the couple before their wedding day.

inspiration and creativity concept, woman in inspiring landscape of lavender fields in France anyaberkut / Getty Images
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Sparkly Metallics

As with any other stand-out material, too much sparkle competes with the bride. The only exception is black-tie events where formal dresses are permissible. Even then, you may want to tone it down some so that the couple getting hitched are the only ones in the spotlight. You can dazzle in your metallic dress somewhere else.

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Neon

An electric color has its place in different settings, however, you shouldn't wear it to a wedding because it’s too in-your-face for most people to handle.  Save that mesmerizing ensemble for another event that is a little more forgiving of your bold fashion choices.

Close up outdoor fashion bright lifestyle portrait of three young pretty women wearing bright summer dresses and sunglasses.Whispering and gossip.
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Denim

Not necessarily a color per se but more of a fabric option, denim has no place at a formal wedding. Unless the couple specifically states that you can wear jeans to their special event, you should never feel tempted to do so. Instead, invest in a nice pair of slacks or a neutral-colored skirt. The idea is to blend in, not stand out. Do your part to keep the focus on the couple. You’ll have your chance to shine on another date.

Bride in jeans jacket with sunflower bouquet staying in the field on golden hour. Springfrom / Getty Images
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Black

Black is a formal color accepted in many social settings. It is, however, not culturally acceptable in many cases. For example, at a Hindu wedding, it can be viewed as a sign of bad luck to see people dressed in black. For the sake of a couple’s beliefs, select a different color to wear to their special event.

Beautiful woman in black dress, looking away SanneBerg / Getty Images
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Red

In some cultures, red is for the couple getting married. You should know that red is associated with good luck and prosperity in Chinese and Hindu cultures. The tradition is something people highly regard, so putting away that red dress or suit jacket in favor of something more subtly colored is highly recommended by wedding experts.

Attractive woman in red dress dancing on the beach. African woman wearing red sundress and sunglasses having fun on the beach. jacoblund / Getty Images
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Skin tones

Any garment that's too close to the same color as your skin or absolutely sheer is a big no-no. It’s not the time and place to debut that outfit. Save it for another event where it will be better received. You don’t want anyone questioning the appropriateness of your choices when you’re supposed to be celebrating.

Woman wearing sheer dress Kladyk / Getty Images

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