Menswear for Weddings- Whilst the bride and her wedding dress is undoubtedly the focus of any wedding, the man on her arm does need to rise to the occasion and look the part. There’s considerable wedding etiquette around what grooms can wear so if you don’t know your morning suit from your tuxedo, best you read on…
The Least You Should Know
How often have we seen a grinning groom in a tuxedo at a daytime wedding or a morning suit in the evening? Oops – wedding faux pas! What a man can wear to a wedding is governed by the season, the time of day and the nature of the event. And if you thought the groom’s fashion options were few, think again – there’s a suit to suit everyone!
A very popular choice for weddings these days, the morning suit comprises a morning coat, waistcoat and trousers – usually grey – with either a shirt with turndown collar (more casual) or wing tip collar (more formal) and tie. A top hat may also be worn.
As the name suggests, morning suits are to be worn in the daytime, and is considered casualwear. Grooms, groomsmen and guests can all wear morning wear, year round – but not after six o’ clock in the evening.
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Contrary to popular belief, it’s the evening suit – or white tie – which is the most formal menswear (not black tie). An evening suit comprises an evening tailcoat, cut away at the front, with matching trousers and a white waistcoat, white shirt with wing tip collar and white tie, and top hat. The evening suit can be black or dark blue and is worn year round at formal evening weddings (that is, after six pm). After many years out of the limelight – for the common man, that is – the evening suit is enjoying something of a comeback.
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The tuxedo – also referred to as Black Tie and colloquially as a ‘monkey suit’ –was first introduced in America in the late 1800′s. At first seen as terribly casual and a bit risqué by the Europeans, by the 1930′s its adoption had become widespread; though for informal dinner parties only. A tuxedo is black or midnight blue and comprises a single-breasted, tailless jacket with matching trousers, white shirt and black bowtie. It’s appropriate for less formal, evening weddings.
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White Dinner Jacket
Lately, the white tuxedo or dinner jacket of yesteryear has been blinged out by in-your-face gangsta rappers, but there was a time when it was the epitome of cool rather than crass. Only a certain kind of man can carry this off (think Sean Connery), and he must always observe the rules – the white dinner jacket is only ever to be paired with black trousers (although both white or black bow tie is acceptable) and is only to be worn in summer after 6pm. Get it wrong, and you’ll be more Dr No than Mr Right.
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A simple two-piece suit comprising jacket and trousers, the lounge suit is a versatile number which can be dressed up or down in a number of ways – go slick and sophisticated, wear the jacket without a tie or lose the jacket entirely in favour of a funky waistcoat and suspenders. Perfect for casual weddings.
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The Nehru jacket hails from India, where it’s worn on formal occasions including weddings. The Western version, popularised by The Beatles in the 1960s, comprises a jacket featuring a mandarin collar plus matching trousers. Its straight and simple lines make the Nehru jacket an elegant, unfussy choice for weddings anywhere, anytime.
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