Mrs. Little Hunting Creek has recently been posting about a topic that's close to my (tiny, hardened, cynical) heart: Are We Dressing Too Casually These Days? At the end of one of her last posts she states:
"If you want to make a grown woman cry, just tell her she is invited to a daytime wedding and put semi-formal on the invite and then drop the news that it's outside. Or a beach wedding - what on earth would you wear to that?"
I can one-up her on that. What's worse than an invitation to a semi-formal garden beach wedding? An invitation that tells you nothing about what to wear.
At this very moment sitting on my desk is a wedding invitation with NO indication of what type of clothes we should wear. It says, "Ceremony at xx in the afternoon, reception at such-and-such location to follow".
An afternoon wedding with a reception. This is what we’re told.
I guarantee you, if I wear something "semi-formal", everyone else will be in jeans. If a wear a nice-but-casual summer dress, everyone else will be in tuxedos and cocktail dresses. Situations like this always remind me of an episode of "Bewitched" that is permanently lodged in my synapses.
No, seriously. "Bewitched". Starring the disgustingly cute Elizabeth Montgomery (and I believe the Second Darrin).
Aha. Due to the wonders of Google, I now know it's Episode 126. In this episode, Samantha is tormented by Darrin's one-upping ex-fiancé, who in the past has caught out our poor heroine by inviting them to a dinner party. The problem? When the casually dressed Stephens arrive at the party, they discover that everyone else is in evening clothes.
Not to be outdone the next time, the Stephens wear their best dress-up clothes. Only to find that everyone else is dressed for a barbeque.
This is clearly a visceral piece of social indoctrination, as this particular episode has stuck with me, burned into the brain as it were, since I was about 7 years old. The horror of wearing the Wrong Thing.
That's exactly what would happen at this wedding (were I to bother attending). Minus the satisfaction of bewitching the obnoxious hostess and causing her wig to run off with the dog, unfortunately.
You can watch Episode 126 on YouTube (of course).