A well-fitted, impeccably styled suit is like a piece of art. It stands out from the crowd in the best way, while the opposite, an ill-fitted, thrown-together look can stick out like a sore thumb. No matter the price tag, suits are investment pieces, meant to be worn time and time again so it’s important to do your homework before selecting a suit. Whether you’re the groom, a groomsman or groomswoman, or simply a guest looking for the perfect suit we have five foolproof tips for finding the perfect wedding suit.
Styling and Communicating
If you're planning the wedding, and responsible or deciding what all of your suit-wearing wedding party will be donning, it can be a daunting task. You want them to look like a cohesive group and fit with the theme, season, and venue of the wedding, while also making sure they don't look like they're heading off to prom in overdone looks. First and foremost it's important to identify your style goals and requirements and then clearly convey (with examples!) what you would like them to wear. Scope out Pinterest, fashion and wedding magazines, and Instagram for the most modern takes on wedding suits to identify your style, but take comfort in knowing that a classic men's suit never goes out of style. To customize the looks to fit your day, a subtle nod to a theme or tradition with a subtle print like a plaid, stripe, or familial tartan print on the tie and pocket square can be a great way to incorporate customization. The boutonniere can also serve as a way to cohesively bring your colors or theme to any look.
Plan Ahead and Book Early
Whether you're buying your suit because you're the one saying "I Do" or as a guest, the biggest piece of advice is to shop early! Regardless of the industry, there are shipping and production delays across the board right now and with the post-pandemic wedding boom still in full force, locking in your wedding look early is crucial. To find your perfect fit you may need to order a pair of pants or a jacket, so factor in deliveries and delays even on the most classic looks. We also recommend being conscious of seasonality as various fabrics and styles (hello, short suits!) may not be available when you need them if they're not in season.
Tack on Tailoring
As with wedding gowns, when shopping for suits it's important to factor in tailoring when looking at your overall budget and timeline. A great, head-turning suit almost always requires a little bit of tailoring (James Bond most certainly doesn't look like that in a tux he bought straight off the rack). Many shops will offer on-site tailoring or help you determine what needs to be done to get your perfect fit, but if you’re shopping online, be prepared to go in for tailoring after delivery. Every single body is different and clothing, even suits, can vary quite significantly from brand to brand, making it hard to nail down a perfect fit every time. Tailoring can make even a bargain of a suit look like a million bucks, so for those on a strict budget, it can be a great way to elevate your look on for less money.
Mind the Dress Code
As a guest, even with something as seemingly straightforward as a suit, the variations among different dress codes can be immense. Depending on whether you're shopping for a summer soiree on the Italian Riviera or a New Year's Eve black-tie event in New York City, the styles you'll have to choose from can vary extremely. Ilaria Urbinati, stylist to all of Hollywood's best-dressed men, from Ryan Reynolds and Dwayne Johnson to Chris Evans and Tom Hiddleston, has a perfect breakdown for navigating wedding dress codes in her Leo guide. For daytime weddings or those events where a heavy, traditional suit would be sweltering, stick to seersucker or linen. On the other hand, for black-tie, evening weddings, the suggested options vary from traditional black and white to colorful, bold satin options. For those who are more seasoned in purchasing suits, this can be a great time to push the limits and try something outside of the box.
To Buy or Not To Buy
At the end of the day, suit rentals are always a good idea. If you're someone who rarely requires a suit, and simply can't imagine a situation where any element of the suit by itself could be worked into your wardrobe, we recommend renting. There are countless options for local and national suit and tux rentals, but for those looking for an easy way to look chic without tons of effort, The Black Tux offers fully styled looks which instantly take away all of the uncertainty and guesswork. The styled options include everything from the suit and shirt down to the cufflinks and shoes. This option works great for a couple who doesn't want to risk a mismatched group at the altar and guarantees impeccably dressed grooms and groomsmen. If you're on the fence about purchasing versus renting, but ultimately to take the plunge and purchase your wedding suit, we recommend finding one that can be repurposed and worn again. Stick to the classic colors and cuts that can be worn for future weddings, work functions, and soirees and save the bold colors and fabrics for another day.
Whether you're a guest hoping to dress to impress or a member of the wedding party, selecting the perfect suit doesn't have to be an insurmountable task. With so many great options for renting and buying, countless style guides, and customizable options galore, it is easier than ever to look great for the wedding and walk away with a suit that can be worn time and time again.
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