A Guide on What to Wear to a Christening

Christenings come round fairly frequently, especially when you’re at the age when all your friends are having children. But it’s one of those occasions that can be difficult to dress for. Where does a christening stand on the pretty frock scale and how do you get it right?

We’re going to make an assumption here – you’re a guest at a regular christening with no added formalities.

A Formal Occasion

Naturally a christening is a formal event and appropriate dress is expected. However, there are few superstitions relating to dress style or colour rules, so you’re much less likely to offend anyone by getting it slightly wrong.

Equally welcome is that, unless you’re a godparent, the occasion is much less dressy than a wedding, so you’ll probably be able to cobble together something from your own wardrobe without having to splash out on a new outfit that you’ll never wear again.

The service itself is likely to be in a church or other religious building – there’s no such thing as a secular christening – so the best advice is to wear what you would normally wear to go to church.

Outfits Suitable for a Christening

If you’re not a regular churchgoer, imagine the sort of thing you’d wear to a smart lunch; think something between a wedding and a barbeque. For guys, that’s usually a suit, although it can be suit trousers with a casual sweater. Women have more choice, naturally. You can choose a pretty dress, or tailored trousers with a smart top. Just take care to avoid the eveningwear – most christenings are in the morning so you don’t want to look as though you’ve just stumbled out of a nightclub! And while we’re on the subject of what to avoid, leave out the jeans, sportswear and flip-flops.

You need to consider the weather and the season. Whatever time of year it is, a church can get cold, so a cardigan or shrug would be sensible for the ladies. It’s also a happy occasion so bright colours are fine, but if you prefer darker shades that’s okay too, as any colour or pattern can work. Even black is fine; just make sure you don’t look like you’re in mourning...


Ladies, you can opt for a piece of statement jewellery to add some pizzazz, but avoid anything that will make you, rather than the baby, its parents, and the godparents, the centre of attention. It’s not the right occasion for outlandish fashion statements and ostentatious displays.

Hat’s aren’t obligatory – many attend christenings with their heads uncovered – but if you like an excuse to show off one of your beautiful hats, go for it. Just remember, this isn’t Royal Ascot!

For the guys, a colourful tie is a nice touch, and if you’re wearing a full suit, a colourful handkerchief will add some interest.

And the Star of the Show

At a christening, it’s only natural that all eyes are on the star of the show: the one being christened. For a full range of bespoke christening wear, visit the Little Doves website, or contact us to chat through some ideas.