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Abercrombie Partners with The Knot to Dress Wedding Guests

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From the normalization of Zoom weddings and the rise of small backyard gatherings, to Vegas-style chapels sprouting up in millennial-centric neighborhoods for quick and convenient ceremonies, the pandemic has upended the traditional wedding business.

Specialty denim retailer Abercrombie is taking this opportunity to expand into wedding guest attire, delivering on the booming demand for versatile, inclusive occasion wear designed with the ‘new nuptials’ in mind. Together with digital wedding planning platform The Knot, the retailer developed the “Best Dressed Guest” collection, a men’s and women’s range of 52 styles that spans suiting to jumpsuits and dresses.

Though Abercrombie doesn’t currently have plans to venture into bridal gowns, the “Best Dressed Guest” collection offers on-trend outfits for wedding events such as rehearsal dinners, ceremonies, receptions, and bachelor or bachelorette parties.

The collection features fall’s top trending colors and styles, including chic neutrals, sunset colors and floral patterns, as well as minimalist silhouettes.

Coordinates are a key theme in the women’s line. A long-sleeve cropped top with a portrait neckline matches with a midi skirt. A dark floral-print square-neck top matches with a high-slit skirt. Dress silhouettes include include “Bridgeton”-inspired cap-sleeve scoop-neck midi dresses, a high-slit mid-maxi dress, a ruched mini dress and an off-the-shoulder mini dress. Wide-leg trousers, a vest top and a single-breasted blazer in sage green round out the women’s suiting options.

The men’s collection offers floral-printed camp-collar shirts, stretch cotton and linen blazers, skinny tapered trousers and knit polo shirts. Part of the line is made with sweat-wicking fabrications so guests can feel comfortable all day.

Abercrombie & Fitch debuted a wedding guest collection for men and women in partnership with wedding planning platform The Knot.

The “Best Dressed Guest” collection offers sizes XXS-XXL, as well as varying lengths and fits. The collection retails for $39-$120 and is now available on Abercrombie’s e-commerce site.

According to the retailer, the line’s debut answers the call of its target consumers. “We’re laser-focused on listening to our millennial customers and providing clothing that fits their lifestyle needs,” said Carey Krug, Abercrombie & Fitch senior vice president of marketing. “In 2020, that meant comfortable, work-from-home ready pieces—and this year, we’re again bringing them the products they’re looking for as they return to celebrating these wonderful life moments that were so greatly missed.”

Wedding dress codes and how consumers view and shop for special occasion fashion are changing as well.

In May, fashion app Lyst named women’s fashion label Reformation as the go-to brand for guests. The Los Angeles label’s Ingrid dress, in both celadon and emerald, had been added to more than 10,000 wish lists. Blazer dresses were also on the upswing. Other designers Lyst reported in high demand for guests included contemporary labels Khaite, Retrofête and Simone Rocha, which landed on the radar of the masses this spring thanks to a fairy-tale inspired collaboration with H&M.

Other fashion players like Selfridges are joining the wedding movement. The U.K. retailer was recently granted a license to host weddings at its famed Oxford Street store and launched wedding attire rentals. The recent boom in weddings is even helping some brands make up for lagging revenue in 2020. Footwear retailer Shoe Carnival recently reported a record quarterly net sales quarter, attributing its success to “categories that suffered during Covid,” such as wedding-ready footwear. Betsey Johnson, meanwhile, collaborated on a line of wedding shoes with David’s Bridal, which also worked with Steven Madden on another matrimony-minded collection.

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