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What to Wear When You're a Principal Sponsor at a Wedding

The tips and tricks to stand out at the altar without upstaging the bride!
What to Wear When You're a Principal Sponsor at a Wedding
IMAGE INSTAGRAM/studiovaniaromoff, maxenemagalona
The tips and tricks to stand out at the altar without upstaging the bride!

What do you wear when the bride and groom have picked you to be their principal sponsor? First off, congrats! Being a principal sponsor is a huge deal, symbolizing the wisdom and support you'll give to the happy couple. For such a big honor, it calls for a killer look that won’t upstage the bride, yet will make you stand out from the bridesmaids. The happy couple picked you for a reason, so put that extra effort for the biggest day of their lives! Before you stress out and make a mad dash to the shops, consider these three aspects of the wedding ceremony in order to build your perfect principal sponsor outfit: 

Location

Is the venue at an immaculate church, a gorgeous beach, a five-star hotel, maybe a lush forest? With wedding venues becoming more creative nowadays you’ll need to consider what the terrain of the venue is and gauge what would be appropriate to wear.

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Color Scheme

The old school rules for a principal sponsor were to wear off-white or cream, which you can still do, but we think fashion is meant to break rules– within reason. You want to be respectful of the bride’s carefully curated color palette without matching too much with the bridal party–you’re the principal sponsor so you want to stand out from the bridal party! Our suggestion is to be cohesive with the color scheme. Plus, it’ll look fire in the photos later if everyone is wearing coordinating shades. 

Style

Keep in mind the fashion aesthetic of the wedding. Are the bride and bridesmaid dresses more minimalist in style? You wouldn’t want to wear feathers and sequins if the bride and bridal party are wearing Meghan Markle-esque gowns with simple clean lines. It’ll take the attention away from the bride and onto you and that definitely won’t be a good look on you. If you can, ask the bridal party or even the bride (if she isn’t too busy) if she could send a photo of the bridal gowns or if you can attend one of the fittings to get a sense of the style the bride is going for.

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Now that we have those considerations underway, we'll go through the most common types of wedding ceremonies so you can stand out without upstaging the happy couple. Here are the tips and tricks based on our favorite Filipino bridal designers and celebrities on what to wear when you’re up at the altar as a principal sponsor! 

Church Bells Ringing

It’s always a safe bet to go for a more modest approach if the wedding is held in a church. Most ceremonies inside religious institutions encourage covering the shoulders and definitely steering clear of too much skin and cleavage. When all else fails–modesty is the best policy!

Shawl or Nothing

If you want to look demure at the church but more youthful at the reception, opt for a cute cover-up you can fling off at the reception and dance the night away! Shawls may seem a bit dated, but it’s all about the fabric and how you wear it! We love the idea of wearing a tulle shawl wrapped around your shoulders like Oscar-winning actress Olivia Colman. Another option is to go for a sweet look with a cardigan hanging on your shoulders clipped at the neck with a glitzy brooch for a cape-like effect. 

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Or wear an actual cape like Dr. Aivee Teo at Maxene Magalona’s wedding to cover your shoulders and still be serving a LOOK. 

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It’s All About the Classics

Go classic with bold shoulders like a gorgeous terno like this Randy Ortiz number worn by Lucy Gomez

For a modern interpretation opt for a top with voluminous romantic puff sleeves or an off-the-shoulder neckline like Charlene Gonzalez-Muhlach in Martin Bautista. Make sure to play with proportions and go with a fitted skirt or skinny satin trousers!

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Seaside Ceremony

Tying the knot at the beach? Relax in an elevated casual look with comfortable fabrics that will project major boho vibes.

Sun-Drenched in Sun Dresses 

Midi and maxi dresses look perfect against the sand and setting sun! It's casual but still looks put together. We love this strapless Vania Romoff midi Martine Ho wore or go for a voluminous one-shouldered maxi like this Rajo Laurel maxi. What makes dresses great are that they’re an easy structured look with endless options to play with: have fun with proportions, fabrications, color, necklines–you can’t go wrong! 

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Go for separates 

If you want to be comfortable and look effortless forego dresses altogether and opt for separates instead. As you’ll be up at the altar as well, you’ll want to look great and be as comfortable in what you’re wearing. This is the perfect option to flatter your body shape and easier to find pieces for the specific silhouette you’re going for. Try a Vania Romoff inspired silk top and body-skimming skirt or a drapey tunic over some loungey trousers like this Jun Escario number.

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Sheer Confidence

Sheer fabrics like organza, chiffon, lace, or dotted tulle are great ways to show hints of skin in an elegant way. Its breezy texture is also very forgiving and will allow you to breathe in the sweltering heat! Take cues from Lara Quigaman Alcaraz who wore a Boy Kastner organza blouse with a cinched floral full-length skirt or perhaps this Monique Lhuillier dotted tulle dress.

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City Love

Hotel nuptials are commonly black-tie affairs where the dress code involves floor length gowns or cocktail dresses. As black-tie ceremonies are expected to be full-on glam have fun and be creative with your look! There a few opportunities to get really dressed up, so take advantage of the occasion!

Pants Perfection

If you’re not a fan of dresses or skirts, then go for a sophisticated alternative with a suit. Don a sharp suit or jumpsuit with jewelry and a glitzy bag like Heart Evangelista, or go for minimalist elegance like Maxene Magalona in silk palazzo pants and an off-shoulder top. 

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Drama Queen

City weddings just scream for a look that is over-the-top! Don’t be afraid to add the drama like you’re at the Met gala with floor-sweeping dresses in feathers and sequins like Miss World Phillippines 2017 Laura Lehmann in a Furne Amato feathered cocktail dress or Gemma Chan dripping in sequins in this Miu Miu number.

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Country Chic

Outdoor weddings like in a lush garden, charming barn, or a serene forest are perfect romantic settings with the most uncharming elements like dirt and bugs to deal with. Take into account the environment you’ll be in and wear stacked heels or wedges! Don’t risk having the dread stiletto sunken in the grass scenario! 

Florals for Spring? Groundbreaking. 

Miranda Priestly may have HATED florals for spring but no one can deny they're perfect for a springtime wedding! If the wedding is a garden or country ceremony opt for florals to blend with the foliage.

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Short and sweet

Midi lengths or ankle-skimming skirts look great against a pretty green backdrop plus you won’t have to worry about getting dirt on the hem! We love this Audrey Hepburn-inspired look on Anne Curtis or wear a fitted midi like this Sari Lazaro dress.

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