What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest #iwillwearwhatilike

What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest: A mixed pattern dress in floral and leopard print, Rixo London style | Not Dressed As Lamb, what to wear over 40

The best excuse for getting dressed up is always a wedding. If you can’t get dressed up for a wedding, when can you…?!

This was the second wedding we’ve been to this year and although we went as evening guests only this time, it’s no less an opportunity to put your glad rags on and dress up. In fact, I sometimes think it’s easier to dress for an evening-only wedding reception – no dilemmas over wearing a hat (you don’t) and no wondering whether your feet will last all day in those heels (they’ve only got to survive a few hours in them).

I didn’t want to go and buy something new as I have so many lovely dresses in my wardrobe that don’t get worn enough, so I shopped my closet for the perfect dress for an evening out. And I found the perfect option: worn just once before (but not yet on the blog), my from-the-high-street mixed pattern floral and leopard print dress which is undoubtedly the Asos version of a Rixo London dress.

Very similar in style, but definitely not in price…!

What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest: A mixed pattern dress in floral and leopard print, Rixo London style | Not Dressed As Lamb, what to wear over 40


I do love Rixo London, but their prices are just a little too eye-watering for me. These sorts of dresses do make a huge statement, and apart from your shoes, bag and jewellery there aren’t many different ways to style them differently. So as much as I’ve always loved their dresses – especially their signature style of mixed pattern floral and leopard print – I’ve not ventured as far as buying one.

(I tend to be the sort of girl that waits till the sales are on, and then I’m chancing whether something’s in my size. But rarely do I pay full price for anything.)

So up pops this blue floral and orange leopard print beauty of a wrap dress (complete with frilled cuffs) in my Asos feed back in the spring, and it was mine for the taking. I wore it first to an event in May; despite the gloriously and almost consistently hot summer we’ve had since the end of April it was one of the few chillier days we had. So my black leather jacket was hiding it for much of the time, and I seem to remember wearing cropped leggings underneath to keep me warm.

There was no need for thermals this weekend as the reception was all inside (thank goodness)! All the dress needed was a clutch bag (similar) – I went for a different shade of leopard – and comfy heels. These crossover mules (similar) were gifted to me at the beginning of last year and they are one of THE comfiest pairs of heels I own. I wore them all day on a boiling hot Chelsea Flower Show day back in May 2017, and feet were fine. Memory serves that they were about £150: pricey, but the quality and the soft leather means you certainly get what you pay for in the way of comfort.

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Lastly, with regards to the post title, “What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest”, I have a few tips. It’s certainly easier to dress for the evening do only, but as someone who believes in occasion-appropriate dressing (and is against age-appropriate dressing, grrrrr), I can suggest:

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5 tips for what to wear to a wedding evening reception

  • Avoid the floor-sweeping maxis and wear a dress you can dance in (so shorter is okay)
  • With that in mind, keep it classy – this is someone’s wedding, not nighttime Ibiza!
  • Think dressy: wear a fabulous piece of statement jewellery if your dress is plain, or let a pattern do the talking
  • If you’re one for hitting the dancefloor, wear your hair up or off your face so it doesn’t bother you when dancing (you’ll be cooler that way too)
  • Wear heels of course but try to wear comfortable ones – taking your shoes off isn’t a great look…!

Of course let me know if you have any other tips!


Do add your outfits to this week’s link up – and if you’ve added a link to here or my button to your post you may be featured next week.



Like this post? You might also like…

All my wedding guest outfit posts

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links which means if you click through and buy I may receive a small commission at no cost to you (click here for my full disclosure). Items listed as c/o were gifted.

What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest: A mixed pattern dress in floral and leopard print, Rixo London style | Not Dressed As Lamb, what to wear over 40
What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest: A mixed pattern dress in floral and leopard print, Rixo London style | Not Dressed As Lamb, what to wear over 40
What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest: A mixed pattern dress in floral and leopard print, Rixo London style | Not Dressed As Lamb, what to wear over 40
What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest: A mixed pattern dress in floral and leopard print, Rixo London style | Not Dressed As Lamb, what to wear over 40
What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest: A mixed pattern dress in floral and leopard print, Rixo London style | Not Dressed As Lamb, what to wear over 40
What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest: A mixed pattern dress in floral and leopard print, Rixo London style | Not Dressed As Lamb, what to wear over 40

Dress: Asos
Clutch: Jaeger c/o (similar)
Heels: Madeleine c/o (similar)
Earrings: Asos (you might like these, or these)



How to mix leopard and floral patterns

Of course what you can do is to mix them up whichever way you like – a leopard top with a floral skirt and vice versa, or even mix leopard with leopard and floral with floral. My best tip for mixing patterns so heavily like this is to always choose a floral that doesn’t have a white background – it needs to be either one all-over colour or have a dark background.

Leopard (nearly) always has black in it, so you need the black or something dark in the floral to tie them together. Too much white will look a bit odd..!



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Thank you for joining the #iwillwearwhatilike link up! This started as a campaign on Instagram in August 2015 where women over 30 wore everything on a journalist’s list of “inappropriate” items for 30+ women (including leopard print, short dresses and oversized sunglasses. Yes, really). It was so popular that I decided to carry it on weekly where women of all ages link up their fabulous style, never mind what anyone tells them not to wear!

The link up goes live every Monday at around 3pm UK time and will stay open for a week. Whilst the original article was of course aimed at the 30+, you can be ANY age to link up. The only criteria is that you’re wearing whatever you damn well like!

Linking up etiquette…

CLICK HERE to read the rules of linking up (and to grab the #iwillwearwhatilike button). Basically it’s just good manners to link back to here – to leave a comment is even nicer!

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Please note that due to the new GDPR laws I’m unable to send an email reminder unless you subscribe to the mailing list of your own accord. CLICK HERE if you wish to be sent an email with a reminder to link up to the #iwillwearwhatilike link up as soon as it’s live!

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My favourite outfits from last week’s link up:
(L-R) Aquamarina Style | In My Joi | Lazy Daisy Jones

To get yourself featured next week, make sure you’ve included a link back to Not Dressed As Lamb or my button in your post/sidebar!

Do share the love and visit as many links as you can (you never know what other lovely like-minded ladies you might meet) – the original Instagram campaign forged some wonderful new friendships so don’t miss out!


What to Wear to a Wedding Reception as an Evening Guest: A mixed pattern dress in floral and leopard print, Rixo London style | Not Dressed As Lamb, what to wear over 40


  1. 12 October 2018 / 7:22 pm

    Perfect dress, perfect colour, perfect fit. You did well.

  2. Simone
    28 September 2018 / 11:17 am

    I saw this dress on ASOS and thought it looked HIDEOUS!!! You make it look so glam and classy. Just, all the gorgeouses.

  3. Nailil
    23 September 2018 / 3:56 am

    I don’t know that I would’ve been able to pull this off. You look great in this mixed print look.

    Xx, Nailil

  4. 21 September 2018 / 6:01 pm

    Wowzers I thought this was a Rixo dress Catherine! Nicely played my friend 😉

  5. 20 September 2018 / 8:02 pm

    Fabulous! Love it! Great combination.

  6. 20 September 2018 / 2:59 pm

    I love this look so much Catherine. I adore Rixo designs, but haven’t yet indulged, but there are several on my wishlist. I remember you wearing this in the summer. I can’t remember if you put it on your Stories, or if you sent it to our WhatsApp chat, but it caught my eye then. Fabulous wedding outfit tips too, thank you. xxxx

  7. 19 September 2018 / 2:44 pm

    This dress is all kinds of FUN Catherine- I love the way you styled it!!!
    P.S. Thank you very much for the lovely feature this week 🙂

  8. 18 September 2018 / 9:51 pm

    On paper I would never think those patterns work together but I love how it looks on you – graceful yet edgy x #Iwillwearwhatilike

  9. 18 September 2018 / 8:31 pm

    Hi Catherine,

    What a perfect example of pattern mixing! Not just the dress but the animal print clutch and black sandals are the perfect accompaniment! And–what a wonderful surprise when I saw that you featured my post along with the other two lovely ladies! How nice! Thanks for that and for sponsoring this superb Link Up.

    xx Darlene

  10. 18 September 2018 / 7:55 pm

    Well you know how much I love the dress…because I bought it too! I wore mine for a wedding anniversary lunch, and even though it was a hot day I didn’t overheat because the dress is so floaty, and the cutout detail at the back really helps. I’d love to own a Rixo dress, but like you, I can’t bring myself to fork out that much. I’m very much a sale shopper, except for dresses like this when you have to snap them up before they sell out!

    Emma xxx

  11. 18 September 2018 / 4:20 pm

    Dear Catherine. Great outfit and super tips as well, especially the one about the heels. As a teacher I am a huge fan of comfortable shoes that look stylish as well. You have asked for some more tips.

    Well, I have got one for the brides-to-be. I have attended a wedding not that long ago and we got a letter in which the bride told us she would change her high heels for sneakers on the dance floor and she strongly advised every other female guest to do so too. I thought that was a brilliant move. It wouldn’t be something you’d do yourself (I mean you don’t want to be the only one wearing sneakers under your super stylish dress), but it was just great seeing literally all dancing ladies on sneakers. It created an awesome vibe on the dance floor as you can imagine and I am sure we all appreciated it. During reception and dinner we were super ladylike and on the dance floor we were super wild!

    Love, Lieske

  12. 18 September 2018 / 2:17 pm

    Lovely! I like the mix of patterns!

  13. 18 September 2018 / 2:03 pm

    You are THE queen of pattern mixing, which is why you look so perfectly relaxed and at home in a dress that not many people could pull off! Gorgeous, babe! xx

  14. 18 September 2018 / 11:35 am

    Oooooh… I love this outfit, Catherine!
    It’s in-your-face-chic.
    Pretty and feminine but sassy too.
    My eldest was working in a Rixo pop-up shop this summer and bagged herself some amazing pieces (lucky girl).
    I may have to have a rummage on ASOS for some rixo-inspired items.
    Thank you for this fabulous outfit!

    • catherine
      18 September 2018 / 1:43 pm

      Wow your lucky daughter, Samantha!!!!!!! I’m not jealous at all 😉 😉

      Thank you hon x

  15. 18 September 2018 / 8:55 am

    That is one amazing dress. It’s absolutely stunning. You look really good in it and it’s a great choice for a wedding.

    • Catherine
      18 September 2018 / 10:58 am

      Penny thank you!

  16. 18 September 2018 / 6:51 am

    Evening outfits can be much for fun can’t they!? I made the mistake of wearing killer heels at my daughters wedding and had to wear flip flops on the dance floor! Luckily lots of the young women did too. Hope you had fun at the wedding xx

    • catherine
      18 September 2018 / 1:44 pm

      Funnily enough Maria the bride at the wedding I went also changed into flip flops for the evening, LOL 😀

  17. 18 September 2018 / 6:06 am

    Catherine you look wonderful in that pattern mix dress, perfect for that special occasion. Totally agree about paying a little more to get shoes that look good but are comfortable and will last the distance.
    Many thanks for hosting the link up.

    • catherine
      18 September 2018 / 1:49 pm

      Ughh expensive shoes are SO worth it, aren’t they Jill?! Thank you xx

  18. 18 September 2018 / 4:10 am

    Love this dress. You look stunning. If you were my size, I now would sign up to be first in line for the dress as hand-me-down. But then you wouldn’t have the dress! They don’t have my size :(((((

  19. 18 September 2018 / 3:35 am

    Oh WOW!! This mixed-patterned dress is BEYOND, dearest Catherine!! Like you, I love weddings because they are the perfect excuse to go “all out” with the outfit…and a statement-making frock like this one definitely needs a special occasion to do it justice. I imagine that yours was the most admired look of the entire reception (next to the bride’s, of course)!!

  20. 18 September 2018 / 12:21 am

    Hi Catherine,
    Love that dress, you can definitely be a little more daring to the night time do as that is usually when everyone wants to let their hair down, and those sandals are stylish but comfy to bop the night away.

  21. 17 September 2018 / 10:48 pm

    I love this dress so much—unexpected prints are just so good together! And that’s great advice for length of dress for weddings, especially for someone like me who loves to dance!
    Cheryl Shops

  22. 17 September 2018 / 10:06 pm

    This is statement Catherine, you look fabulous. Thanks for hosting. x Jacqui Mummabstylish

  23. jodie filogomo
    17 September 2018 / 7:59 pm

    Now that’s the easiest way to mix prints in my opinion!! And it’s such a fabulous look Catherine!!

  24. 17 September 2018 / 7:55 pm

    Great dress! Love the clutch, too!

    Thanks for the link up & have a great week!

  25. 17 September 2018 / 7:29 pm

    Wow! What an amazing dress! I think you can have more fun with an outfit at an evening reception. I’d worry I’d be too conspicuous in the wedding photos standing in a line outside the church (or formal location) in a bright statement dress, but for the evening it’s perfect!
    Thank you for hosting. 🙂
    Best wishes

  26. 17 September 2018 / 7:29 pm

    Blimey, that dress is not shy!! That’s another good thing about being an evening guest, you can go a bit more wild with the outfit, not having to worry about being the flamboyant one standing out in all the daytime group photos! (I wore red to a wedding once where most guests were in pastels – in the photos it’s like there’s a bloomin’ spotlight on me!!). Congrats on your judging role for the blog awards, that’s super news xx

  27. 17 September 2018 / 6:58 pm

    Lovin your print mix Catherine ❤️
    Also congrats on your invitation to judge next year in the UK blogger awards You should be proud

  28. 17 September 2018 / 6:51 pm

    I love the two leopard prints together! I might have to try that. Fabulous dress Catherine, a great Rixo spin off xx

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