wedding attire for guests in Hawaii

I am getting married in Hawaii. We are having a pretty formal wedding. WE have no worries about our guests coming from the mainland and Australia wearing appropriate attire. But we need to let our Hawaii guests know that Aloha shirts and Khakis are not formal enough for this wedding. We do not want a black tie affair but we would like to let guests know to wear shoes(no flip flops, shirts and ties, and the girls to wear a cocktail dress or nice skirt (again no flip flops). If we put simply “formal or semi formal” they may still come in Hawaii formal not wedding formal. How exactly do I write this on the invitations?

Rebecca Black, Etiquette By Rebecca

Dear No Aloha Shirts,

You couldn’t write this on your invitation, but you could include the information on an enclosure. Evening Resort attire or Cocktail attire may work. Here is an excerpt from one of my booklets:

“Evening Resort Attire

· This is very similar to what we would feel comfortable wearing to a country club in the evening. Slacks and a nice shirt (jacket optional) for men and a dress or classy separates are perfect for women.

· Please do not wear flip-flops, tank tops, shorts, t-shirts, or reveal too much skin.

Cocktail Attire Cocktail attire is basically ‘the little black dress’ or its equivalent for women and a suit for a man. For warmer weather, just think of that dress or suit in lighter fabrics and you are well on your way to making the correct choice.”

If you define the dress code for your guests, you will make it so much easier for them and you will most likely receive the response you want.

Best wishes,