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Vietnam / Wedding Traditions in Asia

Vietnamese Traditional Dress Guide: The Ao Dai & More

The wedding dress is a highlight in any Modern Vietnamese wedding. Despite the strong Western influence, traditional wedding outfits have been in style for the past years. But how to choose the best dress for the big day? Let us show you the full guide below. Plus, discover 3 outfit tips for the groom and 3 dress codes for wedding guests.

Vietnamese Traditional Bride Outfits

Ao Dai is arguably the top choice for a traditional wedding outfit. The ‘national costume’ has made a spectacular comeback over the past few years, and now see more often than ever before.

Ao Dai is best when tailor-made. Thus, the bride should know what body shape she is to find the right fit.

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Nhat Binh Ao Dai

‘Nhat Binh’ was the wedding outfit worn by the Queen or the Royal Consort under the monarchy’s rule in Vietnam. The colors and patterns of Nhat Binh Ao Dai differ according to the wearer’s rank.

Photo credit: Dam Anh photography

Ao Dai Ngu Than (Five-Part Cut Ao Dai)

Created in the 19th century, Ao Dai Ngu Than has a wide body, no snatched at the waistline, and flairs out to the end.

The materials and colors also distinguish according to social class. In the old days, only the elite could afford high-quality fabrics like satin, or silk. Delicate embroidery and accessories are added to emphasize the wearer’s class.

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Modern Ao Dai

Modern Ao Dai accentuates the female curves by emphasizing the waistline and hips. To stay on-trend, the modern wedding Ao Dai has major renovation from design, materials to decoration details.

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Colors in Traditional Wedding Outfits

Vietnamese people often have a yellow or olive undertone, with skin colors varying from darker to medium. Whereas, fair skin tones often have a blue undertone.

That said, the following colors flatter most skin tones:

Red Ao Dai

Asian people consider red the color of fortune and happiness. It also gives warmth to the bride’s skin. A deep red color like below is excellent for wedding Ao Dai.

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Blush Pink (or Pastel Pink) Ao Dai

This color always brings out the sweet, feminine side of the bride. Even better, almost all undertones look great in blush pink!

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Soft Gold/Blush Gold

In the past, only royal could wear gold but many brides have adopted it over the years. Why does it work, you ask? The warm hue prevents the person wearing it from looking ‘washed-out’.

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White screams ‘wedding dress’. Some may debate that darker skin tones look off in this color, the key is to pick a warmer white like off-white or ivory.

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Hairstyles and Make-Up to Match

A beautiful wedding dress will be less impactful if the hairstyle and make-up do not match. For example, bold make-up styles only work for photoshoots. On the wedding day, a more natural look will be much better.

The best hair to match a traditional wedding dress should be simple. Depending on the bride’s face shape, hair can be worn in loose waves or French braids.


Choice of Shoes

The right pair of shoes not only flatters the dress but also gives the bride most comfort. After all, she’s expected to stand a lot on that day.
Pointy shoes with pointy heels may look good in photos but they’re not practical. Instead, opt for block heels, wedges, and kitten heels.

3 Tips for the Groom to Look His Best

The attire for the groom may need less attention than the bride. But to ensure the husband-to-be looking his best on the big day, check out the following 3 tips:

Fit is Key

Tailoring is the ultimate game-changer. A rental suit may be cheaper but it can’t fit the body perfectly. Nowadays, many tailoring shops offer great suits for a reasonable price. So, do the research and invest in a suit! To make the best for your buck, choose a versatile look so that you can still wear it on other occasions.

Dress to Match the Bride

Everything looks better when the couple’s outfits match the wedding event’s theme. If the bride opts for a traditional wedding outfit, the groom should follow.

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Consider the Physique

Every groom’s body is different. And while the groom may follow universal dressing tips, it is ever important to consider the body type, build, and proportion. For instance, a tall-looking groom may find it easy to try almost everything. But, a skinny one should not choose colors too dark, or super skinny-cut clothes. On the other hand, a rather chubby groom should avoid glossy fabrics like taffeta.

3 Outfit Tips for Wedding Guests

Wedding guests enjoy a wide range of choices when it comes to dressing up for the event. But make no mistakes, it can also get tricky! Getting dressed to attend a wedding can be a breathe if you follow these 3 simple yet crucial tips: 

  • Choose formal wear in bright colors 
  • Black or white color is acceptable, but try not to don all-white or all-black outfits
  • Avoid similar-looking clothes to the bride and groom
Vietnamese wedding dress, outfits for guests
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About Author

Hi there, I'm a passionate writer about all things culture, travel, culinary, and more! When not deep in writing, I enjoy a long walk by the beach and contemplating what to write next :D

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