How to be the sharpest-looking man at your wedding
From the suit and the shoes, to the all-important wedding watch, let EDGAR show you how to be a great-looking groom.Peter Iantorno May 14, 2015
Wedding style for the groom is a curious beast. While, of course, you want to look as stylish as possible on your wedding day, wearing something too 'out-there' is a big risk - your bow-tie might clash with the bridesmaids' dresses or your pocket square could steal the thunder of your bride's dress - and it will most likely end in disaster.
Our rule of thumb is simple: If you have to ask yourself the question, "Is this a step too far?" It most certainly is. Your wedding day is all about your bride, and if you're wearing anything garish enough that it takes the attention even slightly away from her, you can safely call that number one on a soon-to-be long list of things you'll never hear the end of. Here's how to negotiate the minefield of wedding style:
Irrespective of the type of suit you go for, rule number one of getting the right suit for your wedding is: buy bespoke. It might seem like a ridiculous waste of money to splash the cash on a fancy suit you're most likely only going to wear once - and, to be quite honest, it is, but compared to the small fortune you're about to drop on flowers that will die a day after the wedding, your tailor-made suit is a positively wise investment.
And anyway, you can always find ways to dress down your suit after the wedding so you get a bit more bang for your buck. So, we've established that bespoke is always better - you weren't seriously thinking of settling for an ill-fitting, off-the-rack garment when your other half is planning on remortgaging the house to pay for her dress, were you? - but when it comes to the type of suit, what are your options? Well, there's the super-formal black tie attire of a tuxedo; the classic and still pretty formal three-piece; and then a whole raft of slightly less formal variations on a theme, with different accessories (we'll get to those later) and other bits and bobs added and removed to form different looks. But which is the best?
The answer comes down entirely to the type of occasion your wedding is. If you're getting married on the helipad of the Burj al Arab then heading inside for a royal banquet then we'd air on the side of tuxedo, however if you're saying your vows on a deserted beach then a light open shirt and a nice pair of tailored shorts will be much more appropriate - everything depends on the location. There's only one exception to this rule: if you're getting married in the Scottish Highlands, do not, under any circumstances, attempt to pull off a kilt unless you have at least one, but preferably two, Scottish parents - a non-Scot in a kilt is simply a man wearing a dress.
The world of wedding accessories is a tricky one. As men, we have a natural inclination against them for the very realistic fear that we'll end up trussed up like shetland ponies, and that is more than justified, as there's nothing worse than a bloke who is trying too hard and getting it badly wrong. However, this is your wedding day - if you're not allowed to throw in a few extras now, when will you be allowed to? A pocket square (learn how to fold it right here) and a nice set of cufflinks are a good place to start if your going smart for the reception. For those who want to take wedding accessories to the next level, we asked Italian model, actor and style writer Mariano Di Vaio - a man with some serious style - for his expert opinion on how to get your man accessories right. Follow his tips and you can't go far wrong.
When it comes to your wedding shoes, the options are almost endless. First and foremost, buy a new pair. Showing up to your wedding in the battered old shoes you've been dragging yourself around the office in for the past five years is not a good look - and anyway, you deserve better than that.
Much like the suit, the type of shoes you should get for your wedding really depends on the location. For a relaxed outside wedding, one of these pairs of summer shoes would be just the ticket. Of if you want to go more formal, there's the elegant monkstrap or the classic Oxford or Derby styles. Then there's the great 'socks or no socks' debate - for the record: sockless for the beach, socks on for the chapel - and, if you want to really treat yourself, why stop at a tailor-made suit when you could have bespoke shoes, too? And one final thing: your new shoes WILL rub your feet, so wear them around the house for a few days before to break them in. Oh, and make damn sure they are properly polished before the big day.
Yes, the watch is technically an accessory too, but you know we've got a soft spot for watches, so we make no excuses for giving it its own category. When it comes to picking the perfect watch to wear at your wedding, you first need to consider exactly what your watch says about you. While it might be tempting to go for something flashy like one of the latest pieces from SIHH or Baswelworld, what do any of those watches really mean to you? Not much. For a big life event like your wedding, a timepiece with some history - something vintage or maybe even something custom-designed, is much more appropriate.