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Countryside weddings are as popular as ever these days—whether they’re set in an open field, a barn, or the family backyard. It’s not hard to see why so many couples choose to get married among nature—makes for the dreamiest, most romantic backdrop, and can also infuse the wedding with a more laid-back feel, as guests mingle and dance under blue skies or a canopy of stars.
But just because a country wedding setting may feel more casual, it doesn’t mean you have license to wear shorts and sneakers—make sure to double check the dress code before buying a new outfit. Sundresses and flowy cotton numbers are wonderful for a summer country wedding with a more relaxed dress code, while a more formal attire request may call for silks and satins. And florals, subtle lace details and ruffles are always good ideas.
Here are the best country wedding guest dresses for a rustic wedding—whatever the season and, importantly, the dress code.
Few things say “summer in the countryside” like gingham, cotton and linen. This sweet mini sundress is perfect for a wedding in a hot part of the world in high summer, since it’s breathable and doesn’t cover as much as other designs. Warm weather often mean you don’t have to worry about dressing too formally, since the newlyweds will want you to be comfortable. Besides, this dress is so easy to wear that you’ll get a ton of use out of it post-wedding.
Price at time of publish: $32+
Size range: 0-14 | Materials: Cotton, Linen | Color: Blue/White
Stylist Kat Minks adores the dressed up feel of this fluttery gown, and we’ve fallen irrevocably in love with it too. It features dramatic, pleated sleeves, a sweetheart neckline, a full skirt, and ruffles at the bottom—so it’s definitely not one for the shy fashionista. Although this is a white dress (sometimes considered a no-no for wedding guests), the pink floral print feels bright enough for us to not be a concern. If you’re unsure, you can always run it past the couple before ordering.
Price at time of publish: $499+
Size range: XS-XL | Materials: Polyester, Nylon, Elastane | Color: Floral Candy/White
You really can’t go wrong with florals for a country wedding (even though they may not be groundbreaking). Stylist Alison Bruhn loves this Anthropologie number, which features feminine cap sleeves and a tiered skirt, and is designed with a more relaxed fit that will suit the setting beautifully. We’re particularly entranced by the lavender version for double the flower factor. Pair it with flat strappy sandals or booties.
Price at time of publish: $348
Size range: XXS-3X | Materials: Cotton, Viscose | Colors: Neutral, Lavender
We’re loving this caramel-colored frock’s romantic, rustic vibe—and the fact that it’s size-inclusive. With its thick straps, cinched waist, and A-line midi skirt, it will serve you well for a fall country wedding. Pair it with an elegant mid-season jacket to elevate the look and ward off any incoming chill.
Price at time of publish: $325+
Size range: XXS-4X | Materials: Cotton | Colors: Caramel Brown
Mara Hoffman is such an incredible label: They consider the environment throughout the production process, so you know that each piece is kind to the planet. This dress is made from organic cotton and comes in sizes up to a 3XL, to better reflect body diversity. The crepon fabric makes it a slightly more relaxed number, perfect for a garden wedding that’s not overly formal—plus the poppy color will make you fit right in with the local flora.
Price at time of publish: $315+
Size range: XXS-3XL | Materials: Organic Cotton | Colors: Bright Orange
For a chillier day out in the country, or if you prefer to have your arms covered to attend a wedding, this long-sleeved maxi dress from Windsor is just what you need. The floral print makes it an ideal pick for dancing around a field, as do the leg slit and flowy chiffon fabric. Pair it with strappy heels for a touch of glamour, or with cowboy boots if the dress code calls for ‘em.
Price at time of publish: $59+
Size range: XS-L | Materials: Polyester | Colors: Black/Multi
Bruhn recommends this design as something that’s a little dressy, but still really easy and comfortable. This halter chiffon dress is cinched at the waist before flowing out into an asymmetric pleated skirt that will float in the breeze. The multicolored floral print is perfect for spring or early summer in the country.
Price at time of publish: $158+
Size range: 0-14 | Materials: Polyester | Colors: Off White/Multi
If you’re in the mood to wear a mini dress for this country wedding, may we suggest a bold and playful dress like this pretty option from Lulus. It would be especially fitting for an evening look, thanks to the silky jacquard fabric and shimmery embellishments, but you can definitely pull off the candy pink version for the daytime, too. We love this design paired with woven wedges or stiletto sandals.
Price at time of publish: $89+
Size range: XXS-XL | Materials: Rayon | Colors: Navy Blue, Orange, Black
Lace is a welcome addition to any country wedding guest’s dress, but if you’re not willing to commit to the all-over look, Free People has exactly the piece for you. Designed in the brand’s signature boho style, this maxi is incredibly detailed—from the cutout back to the tassel embellishments, it’s guaranteed to make a splash. It also comes in an amazing range of colors, so you can tailor your pick to whatever setting, weather and dress code you’re working with.
Price at time of publish: $128+
Size range: XS-XL | Materials: Rayon | Colors: 16
Lilly Pulitzer has been a go-to for country chic dressing for decades now, and to this day, the brand never disappoints when it comes to high quality and bright-colored clothing. We absolutely love this eyelet dress in pistachio green for a fun wedding look, and the white one would be great if you’re headed to a wedding where you’ve been asked to wear white. Either way, it’s so easy to wear and will quickly become one of your favorite sundresses long after the party is over.
Price at time of publish: $268+
Size range: 00-16 | Materials: Cotton | Colors: Pistachio, White
For a country wedding—emphasis on “country”—denim is more than appropriate. That doesn’t mean you should show up in daisy dukes, however, but an elegant midi dress like this one from designer label Veronica Beard is a lovely choice. The fabric is lightweight enough to work for mid-seasons or a mild summer day, and the long sleeves, matching belt, and tiered skirt elevate the look.
Price at time of publish: $448+
Size range: 00-16 | Materials: Cotton | Colors: Light Wash
Good American offers more inclusive sizing than almost any other mainstream clothing label (except those that only carry athleisure or everyday basics). Available in up to a 5XL, this glam dress comes in a shade appropriately dubbed “summer green”—which we love for a more formal country wedding—and a simple black, which would work well for an evening reception. The sleek slip style is super flattering on everyone, and the stretchy pleated fabric means it won’t tug uncomfortably as the party progresses.
Price at time of publish: $140+
Size range: XXS-5XL | Materials: Polyester | Colors: Summer Green, Black
This halter dress by Vince Camuto comes in a shade of green reminiscent of lush fields, and is decorated with a colorful floral print and a white band at the bottom—two very good reasons for Bruhn to recommend it for a country wedding. Its flowy skirt with a handkerchief-style hem lends beautiful movement to your whole outfit, and would look absolutely stunning with nude heels or wedges.
Price at time of publish: $168+
Size range: 2-16 | Materials: Polyester | Colors: Green Floral
We’re huge fans of Christy Dawn—a label that’s committed to both sustainable practices and size inclusivity throughout its range. This floral print dress with romantic poet sleeves and a tiered skirt is ethically made from regenerative and organically dyed cotton, and comes in both petite and plus sizes, so more people can enjoy its lovely design. Breathable cotton makes it a great option for a summer wedding, but the sleeves and longer length mean it’s also ideal for a chilly day in spring—just be sure to add a jacket and closed-toe shoes.
Price at time of publish: $298+
Size range: XS-3X | Materials: Cotton | Colors: 5
We’re telling you—florals are where it’s at when it comes to country weddings, according to Bruhn. This is the expert’s pick for a romantic dress that’s perfect for twirling on the dance floor, but that also features a little structure from the cupped bust and darted bodice. The delicate rose print, ruffled straps and lace-up back make this sweet dress into a truly special piece of clothing.
Price at time of publish: $178+
Size range: XS-XL | Materials: Rayon, Lyocell, Nylon | Colors: Purple Floral
For dancing the night away, there’s nothing better than a satin gown—yes, even in the countryside. Minks recommends this dress for a touch of glam, and we can definitely picture the gold version shimmering beautifully at dusk. The pink “nougat” shade is totally wearable in the daytime for a wedding set on a cooler day. Both options (and the black one, of course) feature elegant yet subtle details: an open back, long balloon sleeves, a keyhole opening, a twisted bodice. Happy sigh.
Price at time of publish: $286+
Size range: 2-12 | Materials: Rayon, Polyester, Elastane | Colors: Gold, Black, Nougat
For an afternoon ceremony that turns into an evening party, Minks love the edgy feel of this bias-cut ruffled gown. The red option is gorgeous for a dressier countryside event, but will still infuse a ton of personality into your ensemble. Pair it with black or metallic sandals to really make an entrance.
Price at time of publish: $328+
Size range: 0-16 | Materials: Viscose, Polyester | Colors: Black, Red
If you can appreciate a pastel or muted color palette, but you feel most in your element in shocking brights, Show Me Your Mumu has got your back. This extra fun smocked, ruffled, tiered dress comes in candy pink, adorned with lively flowers in shades of fuchsia, turquoise, electric blue and apple green. We love that the straps are adjustable and can be tied into a halter, too.
Price at time of publish: $228+
Size range: XS-XXL | Materials: Polyester | Colors: Pink Floral
For a daytime country wedding in the middle of summer, a sundress is a wonderful choice. Cupshe is the perfect destination for affordable, hot weather-friendly wedding guest attire, and this dress doesn’t disappoint: The stripes may be a little beachy, but the sweetheart neckline and maxi skirt make it party-ready. This one would look lovely with flat sandals or wedges.
Price at time of publish: $43+
Size range: S-XL | Materials: Cotton, Polyester | Colors: Gray/White
Gingham is a countryside classic, but we’re super on board with this modernized version with oversized checks. Starting at a size 00 and available in up to a 24, this slip dress comes in polished black and white or charming pink and lavender. The ruffled bottom adds a little extra intrigue, so pair this dress with some unfussy shoes—perhaps in black or white.
Price at time of publish: $198+
Size range: 00-24 | Materials: Polyester | Colors: Black/White, Pink/Opal
What to Look for in a Country Wedding Guest Dress
“Since the wedding and/or reception could be outside or in an indoor/outdoor location, the climate dramatically influences the choice of what to wear as a wedding guest,” explains Bruhn. The good news: as long as you do your research, you’ll be able to put together a lovely weather-appropriate outfit, no matter the season. “If it is going to be warm outside, steer clear of silk dresses in solid colors, stay away from tight-fitting dresses in heavier fabrics, and look for lightweight, soft fabrics with plenty of movement,” Bruhn advises.
Meanwhile, stylist Stacee Michelle shares her advice about dealing with unexpected chilliness. “Adding a blazer is a great way to elevate a sleeveless peasant dress and provide added warmth,” she explains. “A fitted turtleneck can also work underneath a sleeveless dress to make it suitable for cooler climates. Limited on space? Pack a scarf—it is the perfect lightweight travel accessory and easily stores in your purse when not in use.”
As with weddings in any other kind of setting, country weddings will have a certain dress code you should follow. “Whether the wedding is in a barn or a sophisticated vineyard, you can never go wrong with an elevated-casual ensemble,” says Michelle. “For a casual dress code, trade in your jeans for a nice airy maxi dress or jumpsuit for comfort and functionality. For dressier requests, continue to think of free-flowing silhouettes and incorporate fine (or costume) jewelry to elevate your countryside look.”
Choosing a color for your wedding guest outfit is your opportunity to have fun, and there aren’t many rules to follow here (although the no-white rule does usually still stand—sorry), but Michelle shares the following advice. “The landscape is typically the base color palette for a country wedding, so I encourage guests to be inspired by the natural elements—flowers, mountains, sky, water, or fall foliage—when selecting an outfit,” she says. “Choose light colors and fabrics for a daytime wedding and opt for darker tones during evening nuptials.”
It depends! Make sure to double check the dress code before making any decisions. Once you know what the mood will be, you can feel free to have fun with your dress choice, while following a few guidelines to make the process easier. “Function and comfort are two words to remember when selecting a dress or jumpsuit for the occasion,” says Michelle. “A midi or maxi-length dress with movement will allow you to easily flow from the barn to the bar with elegance. Where you may feel safe with a solid dress, rustic weddings are the perfect place to welcome floral and patchwork patterns, along with embroidery, lace, and crochet details to maximize your look.”
“Footwear needs to be well thought out,” says Minks. “Most wedding venues will dry out the grass in areas surrounding a venue so nothing is too wet and heels don’t sink in—but if the wedding is at a family estate or farm, these types of considerations may not be taken by venue owners or the hosts of the wedding.” For these reasons, the expert loves the comfort and style of wedges or flat sandals for attending a country wedding, but suggests wearing heel protectors if you do opt for a stiletto.
Another way to wear heels despite having to potentially trudge muddy terrain is to go for a chunkier heel. “A block heel or mule can still give you the height you want with a dress without having to wear a stiletto,” Michelle says, adding, “At a country wedding, you have more freedom to incorporate unique details into your looks like cowboy boots and a hat. Even though most country weddings are more laid back, leave the tennis shoes at home.”
Why Trust Brides
Iris Goldsztajn is a Paris-born, London-based freelance writer with 10 years of experience covering fashion, beauty, wellness and lifestyle for the likes of Brides, InStyle, Marie Claire, British Vogue, Cosmopolitan, Bustle, Refinery29 and many more. As the former associate editor for Her Campus, she was responsible for all style and beauty news coverage. In order to write this article, Iris drew on her knowledge of fashion, and spoke to bridal styling experts Stacee Michelle, Kat Minks and Alison Bruhn for their insight on the best dresses to wear to a country wedding.