Long gone are the days when the groom is exempt from bridal fashion. When it comes to wedding suits for men, there is certainly more that goes into a tux than meets the eye. “What people don’t usually understand is that there’s so much personalization that comes in a wedding tuxedo,” Ralph Fitzgerald, Huntsman’s U.S. cutter in residence, tells Vogue. “The biggest mistake a groom can make in their choice of suit is one that isn’t true to their personality.”
Of course, Fitzgerald’s philosophy is informed by London’s Savile Row, the street where the most revered of tailors can be found crafting the finest bespoke suits; it’s also where the British royal family sources their finery. He is accustomed to the couture-like practice in suiting and believes that the tuxedo a groom wears on his big day is more special than most. “Fabric, style, fit—every detail is looked at even closer because this is the suit they’ll probably remember the most,” he says.
While black tuxedos are usually the traditional default to wedding tuxedos, tailors are noticing a turning tide. Men, now more than ever, are opting for different colored suits and silhouettes. With his own wedding set for next year, Fitzgerald is going the untraditional route with a dark green–colored tonic mohair wedding tuxedo. “It’s more like me, and it’s my special day, anyway,” he says.
So how does a groom choose? Does one simply go for the traditional sleek black tux? How about a fun pattern more attuned to their personality? No matter what is worn, Ed Turco, Huntsman’s U.S. director, preaches one cardinal rule: “The suit needs to fit properly and be comfortable,” he tells Vogue. “What’s the point of making a wedding suit for a groom that’s just going to be uncomfortable all day?”
Below, we round up the best wedding suits and accessories for men with the help of some of the premier tuxedo experts. Whether it is bespoke or not, remember: What a groom wears on their big day should be comfortable, great-fitting, and personal.
Keep It Sleek With a Traditional Black Tux
The black tuxedo is the tried-and-true option for grooms interested in traditional attire. It’s sleek, timeless, and sophisticated. For those who may be worried that the classic look might not offer enough personalization, fret not. While the color palette remains, there are still many ways to make it your own: the varying shape of lapels, fabrics, and jacket lengths. For evening weddings in the colder months, consider opting for a velvet tuxedo. If you’re looking to switch up the silhouette a bit, double-breasted jackets are great for those who love a vintage moment and want to make their shoulders look very, very good.
Match the Bride With a White Tuxedo
While it’s never appropriate to wear white as an attendee out of respect for the bride, there’s no such restriction for the groom. In fact, white tuxedos have proven ideal for wedding affairs that take place outdoors during the spring and summer months or in warmer destinations. Like the black tuxedo, fit and fabric are up to interpretation. With white wedding suits, one may even choose to don black pants to give a slight contrast to the bride’s all-white look. But there’s a catch: White suits should always coordinate with the bride’s dress. If the bride’s dress is ivory, so should be the groom’s jacket. And so on.
For Grooms Looking to Add Some Personality
“There’s definitely been a movement away from the classic men’s black wedding tuxedo,” says suitmaker extraordinaire David Hart. “The biggest thing I’ve seen is men changing out of a classic tuxedo after the wedding ceremony into something more fun for the reception.” According to Hart, clients from all over are requesting classic tuxedo silhouettes in various colors, with green being especially popular. As Fitzgerald mentioned earlier, your wedding is the one special day tailored to you and your forever-to-be. Why not choose something fun and quirky?
For Grooms Who Want to Make a (Small) Statement
Some grooms desire to exhibit a bit of personality without coloring too far outside the lines. “Most men that want something classic have been choosing blues and navy,” says Hart. This way grooms can still show a bit of personality without stepping too far outside tradition. For those dressing for a more casual wedding in a rustic, outdoor, or beach setting, tan suits are also a great option. Just remember, the lighter the tan, the less formal the attire becomes. And for those who are leaning toward gray suits, the same rules apply.
Destination Wedding in the Tropics? Try Linen
If your ideal wedding venue is located closer to the equator, a linen suit might be your best option. Its lightweight and breezy material will keep you cool on your big day, and the color does wonders to minimize the appearance of any sweat. For a casual ceremony, linen suits in a light gray or tan can give off a polished look while still keeping it laid-back.
Perhaps the Ceremony Calls for a Morning Suit?
While they are usually donned by grooms across the Atlantic, morning suits are ideal for formal weddings taking place during the day. They are characterized by the signature tailcoat and were the style chosen by Prince Charles and David Beckham. To avoid boxy silhouettes, make sure your morning suit contours the body properly: S-shape in profile and trousers should sit high.
Tie or Bow Tie?
The decision between tie and bow tie ultimately comes down to the formality of your wedding. If you’re wearing a tuxedo, and you and your significant other have decided on a black-tie wedding, bow ties are the most appropriate. Semiformal and more casual affairs allow for ties. And if you choose to keep your wedding suit more traditional but still want to add a bit of flair to your look, patterned bow ties and ties are great to consider.
Footwear Is Not to Be Forgotten
Another tricky decision in wedding attire for grooms is footwear. Like the tuxedo, it’s essential to ask the important questions: What level of formality is the wedding? Where is the wedding? And what’s the theme of the wedding? For ultra-formal or traditional weddings, stick to a classic oxford in black. Loafers and other suede shoes are great for comfort and make an ensemble look less stiff. And if you’re after bespoke footwear, shoe brands like Del Toro offer customization to add quirky decor to your look.
Lastly, the Accessories!
To prevent any last-minute fashion needs, be sure to keep an eye out for the accessories that finish off a groom’s wedding look. “Bracers, cummerbunds, and tuxedo studs are most of the time overlooked, and the grooms don’t think about them until the very last minute,” says Hart. Cuff links are small but can easily polish your look and make it feel complete, while a cummerbund is essential for formal weddings.