Getting married should be the best day of your life, but the stress of what to wear can be daunting, as can the costs of buying or renting clothes for the big day. For men there is quite a choice, and this should be dictated by what type of wedding is planned; morning, afternoon or evening; formal, informal or beach. But it also depends on budget and if you’re looking for tips on how to save money for your special day, be sure to read this wedding saving guide. That said, here are a few ideas for suits to fit just about any occasion:
White tie is as formal as it gets. It is not only the most formal, but also the costliest, both to buy and to rent. It is literally a white bow tie, on a white wing-collar shirt with studs and cufflinks, a tailcoat, matching trousers (black for evening and grey for morning), a pocket square, a cummerbund and closed black shoe.
Perhaps the most popular of the formal attire is black tie. This is a black bow tie, black dinner jacket with matching trousers and black shoes. Cufflinks, a white pocket square, cummerbund and shirt studs are optional, but give an extra lift to the outfit.
If budget is a problem or the wedding is a less formal affair, a black bow tie with a standard suit is an option. Black, navy, or dark grey suits are all acceptable. Again, black or dark brown shoes complete this outfit.
Getting into more casual attire, there is the option of wearing a modern suit and tie. For colder climes chose a dark colour in a heavier fabric such as Tweed and for summer weather, a light grey or beige will do the trick. A white shirt makes this look more formal than a coloured one, but just don’t overdo the colour, light blue and cream are possibilities, pink flowers, less so.
A jacket, trousers and shirt are an informal way to be slightly formal. It bridges the gap between formal and casual. The jacket could be a blazer and a different colour to the trousers, (provided they compliment each other), and a tie can be optional with this form of dress. Shoes can be either lace-up or loafers but are better in dark colours. This style is often referred to as dressy-casual.
Casual is anything you want, from pink and purple check trouser with an orange shirt to jeans and a t-shirt. Just remember, you will be looking at photos of this day for the rest of your life, so stick to something you will still like in twenty years’ time. For a beach wedding in the Caribbean you can get away with tailored shorts with a linen jacket, but for a rainy day in London stick with the Tweed option and bring a classic black umbrella.
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If you do not own a suitable suit, renting is a cheaper option when budgets are limited. There is another possibility, although many find it unappealing; Charity shops are a great place to pick up quality wear for a few pounds. If you are lucky and find the right suit that fits you this could be a wonderful and very inexpensive way to buy your wedding outfit. Just make sure it fits as there is nothing worse than sleeves that are too long and what looks like your big brother’s cast-off trousers. A tailor can do alterations at a reasonable price.
Tips: Remember socks and belts are important. Wear a belt that matches your trousers and shoe, even if you don’t need it, (provided your trousers have belt loops). It just adds a little more elegance and formality. Socks should match your trousers as not to stand out unless you’re going for the casual wedding look.
Ties can be a hazard unless they are plain. You don’t want people to remember your wedding for your ‘Micky Mouse tie’ – do you? Stick to plain or a small, delicate pattern. A pocket square is inexpensive but it adds to the overall look of any suit, and for a wedding, white is a good choice. Cufflinks also make your outfit slightly more formal as long as they are plain. A nice white shirt will dress up a standard suit and is an inexpensive way to add to overall appearance, so look at buying one if your budget does not stretch to a new suit, or you have a suitable one already.