As we embrace the month of February, we’re inspired by all of the love that’s in the air. Whether you’re single, dating or you’ve been married for 25 years, finding something in your closet for special occasions can be challenging. In this edition of What to Wear, we’re showing you beautiful styles to wear through every phase of a relationship from the first date, to meeting the parents to walking down the aisle. Even if you’re already married — who knows? Maybe your hubby will ask you to marry him all over again this Valentine’s Day!
Our models for this shoot are Thomas Walsh & Oksana Kusyo, who are engaged, and Kurt & Anissa Neubaur from The Olive Branch Foundation — all modeling at the breathtaking Hermitage Farm. The looks from Rodes For Him | For Her, Something Blue, Couture Closet and Clater Jewelers were created by our amazing stylist Shannon Kessler, with hair and makeup provided by her salon, Primp Style Lounge. (Plus we’ve got some fun stationery from Something Blue and a lovely wedding invitation suite from Etcetera.) Let’s start with the first date!
A Fun First Date Look
First dates are all about having fun! We recommend being comfortable yet polished. If you feel good in what you’re wearing, you’ll exude confidence, and your personality will shine through. Our stylist chose a cute, cozy top and jeans, then accessorized with a pop of color from the red sweater, a long necklace and fashion-forward snow boots.
Shannon’s style tip: First date jitters? Keep the worry at bay with this gray knit peplum top — a soft, romantic touch with a cute ruffle detail. We love this cranberry sweater that can be worn long or unzipped to make it hit at the hip.
A Sophisticated Look for a Special Night
For those who have been married for a few years — or maybe a lot of years — date night is especially cherished. Spice things up by getting extra fancy! These are chic looks — especially for an anniversary.
Shannon’s style tip: A leather pencil skirt looks great at any age and is perfect for just about any occasion. This beautiful winter-white silk blouse has a flirty lace trim that makes it ideal for date night. For the fellas, a pocket square with a sport coat is a chic way to keep it casual without overthinking it.
A Modest Look to Meet the Parents
When it comes to meeting his parents, a little black dress is always a classic choice. The first impression matters, so we recommend playing it safe but stylish. We love the floral pattern on this flattering knee-length dress — there are no worries of too much cleavage or not being able to bend over. This dress is, in a word, perfect!
Shannon’s style tip: Meeting the parents can be stressful. Being confident in how you look will help translate into a radiant first impression. This black sweater dress with floral side-panel detail creates a sophisticated yet relaxed ensemble. For the guys, dressing in business-casual is a great rule of thumb. Tuck in your shirt, opt for a dark denim and add a sport coat.
Fancy Looks for the Fellas
For the fellas, a classic button-down with a sport coat is always a great choice when you need to look sharp. For a particularly upscale event, we recommend slacks, but when it’s your family and friends, dark denim jeans will do just fine.
Goin’ to the Chapel …
When it comes to planning your wedding, keep in mind that your invitations communicate the expected dress code. Linda Humphrey, our etiquette expert from Etcetera, says, “Your invitations should drive what you want your guests to wear.” A fancy invitation will encourage your guests to dress elegantly, and a more casual invitation is perfect for relaxed, dressy-casual attire.
Wedding and Vow Renewal Gowns
Wedding dress shopping has to be, by far, the most exciting part of the wedding planning process. All four of these gowns are perfect for weddings and vow renewals. When it comes to choosing the perfect dress, it’s just like meeting your future husband: You’ll know when you find “the one” because it will make you feel like you’re the most beautiful woman in the world, and you’ll look back on your pictures with a radiant smile for years to come.
Happy Valentine’s Day! We hope you feel prepared for any romantic milestone that comes your way!
THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU!
- To our boutiques, Something Blue, Rodes For Him | For Her, Clater Jewelers, Couture Closet and Etcetera for providing the perfect looks and accessories.
- To our photographer, Christine Mueller Photography, for shooting absolutely breathtaking photos.
- To our stylist extraordinaire, Shannon Kessler, for making our models look incredible.
- To Primp Style Lounge, for their impeccable hair and makeup services.
- To Hermitage Farm for allowing us to use their stunning historic home and surrounding property.
- And to Kurt & Anissa Neubaur of The Olive Branch Foundation, and Thomas Walsh & Oksana Kusyo for modeling for us.
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