Photo by Salt Water New England

Monday, October 17, 2022

Attire for a Groom?

 

Dear Editor and Fellow Readers, 

I am a young man getting married next summer. It will be a small, intimate ceremony. What attire do you recommend? 

Cordially Yours,

An Appreciative Fellow Reader.


27 comments:

  1. I married last year on July 4th. I wore a custom black tuxedo. I was able to rewear it to a few events after so the cost per wear became a great value. I would recommend getting something custom made for you and allow your bride to have input. I went traditional black with shawl collar from J.Mueser in NYC.

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  2. Navy blue blazer - white oxford cloth button down shirt - khakis - Sperrys

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  3. It entirely depends on what your bride is wearing, how formal and traditional the wedding is, and, of course, what you and she decide. If it's going to be particularly elegant, black tie is always perfect. If it's a little less formal, a well-cut suit in navy blue or dark grey is an excellent choice. If it's a bit "preppier," a navy blazer with a pale blue shirt and either a repp tie, or a tie in the wedding colours, is likewise lovely.

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  4. Depends on time of day and level of formality. Above all, attire for male members of the wedding party should be something that is part of the male wardrobe in the real world, such as dinner jacket or stroller or cutaway or blazer or suit or whatever. Most of what the formalwear industry promotes has no place outside the fantasies of brides who don't know anything about etiquette, and immediately identifies the bride and the unfortunate wearers as clueless. An example of doing it right: My brother had a black-tie wedding--appropriate for evening--and the men all conformed to dress code without dressing identically; we were wearing different cuts of jacket, different interpretations of the bow tie, etc., but we were all correct and wearing things we could have worn for any black-tie event.

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  5. I’ve never understood the black tux in a wedding. They are designed to look good at night — not during your 3:30 p.m. afternoon ceremony.

    I think a typical blue or gray suit works fine. The groom has room to be a bit a louder than a typical suit, some checks, etc., perhaps a vest, perhaps a bow tie. There aren’t many times when a young man today won’t look ridiculous wearing a bow tie, and his wedding is one of them.

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    1. My son in law and his groomsmen wore dark grey suits, white shirts, and red bowties for a Texas Hill Country wedding exactly seven years ago today! My son in law makes bourbon, and even before the ceremony it was flowing freely, including a disappearing bottle (or two or three) of Booker's in the cottage where they were getting dressed. Other than my son in law and myself, none of them knew how to tie a bowtie. I told them not to look in the mirror but to tie it by feel as you would tie shoes. Needless to say, son in law and I ended up tying them all.

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    2. Slade Lemaster IIIOctober 19, 2022 at 1:49 PM

      Some weddings occur during the evening. And the men's eveningwear had better be black unless the season and venue make a cream/white or other contrasting jacket acceptable.

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  6. You can’t go wrong with a navy blue suit (bow or neck tie) and for the love of all that is holy, BLACK shoes.

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    1. Absolutely agree. Think of the photos and envision timeless style.

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  7. I believe it depends on the time of day, how formal you want it to be, what you know of your guests (not wanting them to feel under dressed) and what your partner envisions. I got married with fifty-four of our friends in attendance in a late morning summer wedding in a navy blue suit. A morning coat and striped trousers would have been fun but too much, given how I knew our guests would dress. If the wedding is in the evening, formal (white tie and tails) is pretty spectacular, but a dinner suit and black tie or a dark suit and white shirt are a lot more comfortable for dining and dancing. Congratulations and best wishes for your future together.

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  8. We were married on the Thomas E. Lannon, out of Gloucester, and I wore a navy blue blazer, solid blue Brooks Brothers shirt, Breton-red pants, a yellow Vineyard Vines tie, and Sebago boat shoes (no socks of course). I can still wear everything, although the pants are getting a little tight . . .

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    1. Glad to see someone's on the "same page" as me ...

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  9. We planned on marrying in an Episcopal summer chapel, so it was going to be blazers, khakis and loafers for me—pretty much my uniform. However, my grandparents were quite elderly and the travel would have been too much for them. So, we went to them and married in the early afternoon in the chapel at St. Bart’s and followed with cake and champagne (no evening reception). So, I went with a morning suit. Please, please, please…no tuxedos during the day.

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  10. We had the small, intimate wedding. The groom, best man, and father of the bride all wore navy suits, white shirts and ties to match the color theme. If it had been a summer wedding held outdoors in the afternoon, I would have definitely considered the navy blazer/khakis combo.

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  11. A lounge suit, blazer or tuxedo devalues the most important day of your life. They are appropriate for other social occasions. For a wedding, the correct attire is a morning suit as worn by King Charles III when he married The Queen Consort. His sons and other Royal males also wore morning suits. Scots, or those of Scottish descent, often opt for a kilt with a Prince Charlie (or other more formal) jacket. If you must wear a suit, don't wear brown shoes like the hot polloi! Black oxfords, preferably with cap-toes, are imperative.

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  12. Pants. Definitely, wear pants

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    1. Magnus Alastair Knox Lachlan McLeod VIOctober 18, 2022 at 12:43 PM

      Or a kilt.

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    2. I wore a kilt with a day jacket, as did the best man and two of the groomsmen. The bride wore the usual white dress. There were no bagpipes but there was communion. That was 43 years ago.

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  13. A morning suit is certainly an option, but it can be expensive to outfit oneself and a wedding party in them, especially if you (unlike King Charles) are unlikely to have need of one again. I agree entirely with Anonymous 8:41: Never a tuxedo before the evening.

    I wore a navy suit and white piqué shirt, with a gray Ralph Lauren Purple Label tie. The suit and shirt were made to measure at Paul Stuart. I still wear the shirt on formal occasions (though it's imperfect for the task as it has ordinary buttons), but the suit was tailored poorly and didn't get much better with another tailor's attempt after the wedding. I've since parted ways with it. The staff at the suit fitting was rude and dismissive (I can't say with certainty it's because I'm Black, but I had that sense), and I vowed never again to buy anything from Paul Stuart. That has been rather costly for them in the intervening 22 years, as I would have spent many thousands of dollars there otherwise. Wishing you better luck!

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    1. Shame on the staff at Paul Stuart! Alas, too many staff in upmarket gents outfitters are equal opportunity offenders when it comes to haughtiness towards customers. it's a real problem in London's West End.

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  14. This is not the specific answer to your question but - you should match the level of dressiness of your bride (or groom, sorry you didn't specify). I'm sure we've all seen wedding photos where one person is wearing something beautiful or stately and the other person looks like a slob. I know that a wedding belongs to both of the people being married, but you should coordinate outfits. Your married life will be a lot of coordination and hopefully agreement, and it should begin on your wedding day.

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  15. If the wedding is to be formal, morning clothes for the groom and the groomsmen. If it's semi formal it's a navy blue suit for the groom and groomsmen. If it's a casual wedding, navy blazers and white, or light coloured trousers for the groom and the groomsmen. It's not a costume party nor are you walking the runway at a fashion show, it's a wedding so keep to some sense of tradition, IMHO.
    If it's an evening wedding, then the grooms and groomsmen would wear evening clothes.
    Note: At sundown, you don't disappear and change into your 'comfy clothes', stay dressed in the same outfit you wore down the aisle.

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  16. As others have said, for a traditional formal wedding, a morning coat or stroller and striped trousers are correct for a daytime wedding and black tie is correct at night, unless it is truly formal, in which case white tie and tails would be worn, but white tie is very rare these days. I wore a stroller and striped trousers for my noon wedding, as did the groomsmen.

    However, a dark suit, navy or charcoal gray, is fine for a dignified and slightly less formal wedding, whether day or night, and if your summer wedding is to be held outdoors in the daytime, I have seen navy blazers and even seersucker suits worn to good effect. Again, as other posters have said, whatever you wear should be appropriate, real-world clothing, not a costume, and should be attuned to what you, your bride and your guests are comfortable with. Congratulations and I wish you many years of happiness.

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    1. I was wondering when my beloved seersucker would get a nod! I believe the OP said it was a small, informal affair. I’d either like to see the seersucker or a navy blazer, light trousers, and tie to compliment the wedding party. Hopefully, all eyes will be on the bride! The groom is the accessory that helps her look graceful as she mingles and dances. Best wishes!

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  17. Stay with the classic's!

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  18. Depends entirely on the season, time of day, how formal your wedding is going to be and of course you and your fiancee's preferences and budget. Spending the equivalent of a house downpayment on one day is bonkers in my view, but to each either own. You can't go wrong ever with a well cut suit in navy or grey and please, lace ups with socks. A couple of years ago, we attended a formal day time wedding in Italy. Groom and his attendants in black tie. Two of the groomsmen wearing black loafers sans socks. In any case, congratulations on the up coming nuptials.

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