When you’re invited to a wedding, there’s always the question of what to wear. Whether it’s black tie or a more relaxed dress code, there are some sartorial rules you should follow to avoid upstaging the bride and groom or turning up under-dressed. This article covers the best options for men, with a focus on what to wear if the dress code is formal, semi-formal or casual.
For the most formal weddings, you’ll need to turn up in a suit or tuxedo. Unless you’ve been explicitly told that this isn’t necessary, your safest bet is to assume that it will be. If in doubt, a black suit with a black bowtie is the way to go. Other colour options can be used depending on the season and the level of formality. Dark colours like navy, charcoal and dark blues are ideal for winter, while lighter shades like beige and pastel colours can be worn in summer.
Smart-casual is one of the most difficult dress masculine wedding dress codes to navigate, as it allows a lot of room for interpretation. You can go with a full suit or with smart separates, such as a sports jacket and chinos. If you’re going with a suit, look for suits in linen and cotton-blend seersucker – these are great at wicking moisture away from the skin, which helps to keep you cool. For a more tailored look, opt for a blazer with a classic double Windsor collar or even a grandad collar.
If you’re wearing a smart-casual suit, try adding a bit of personality to your outfit with a patterned tie or lapel pin. However, don’t go too far – you still want to look sharp!
A formal wedding is the most traditional and elegant option. If the dress code is a tuxedo or full-tailored suit, you’re looking at a fitted look with black shoes and a white shirt. Other colour options can be used depending on season and the level of formality, but black is usually the best choice.
A semi-formal wedding is a great opportunity to show off your style and add a bit of personality to your outfit. Choose from a classic suit in a shade of blue or black, or you could go for something more creative such as a suit with an unusual weave or texture.
Alternatively, you can pair smart chinos with a shirt and a blazer in a light shade of grey or blue. Ties aren’t usually required for semi-formal attire, but you can still opt for a bowtie or pocket square to complete your look.
The final step is to finish off your outfit with the right accessories. A watch, cufflinks and a hanky are all good choices for weddings, but there’s also room to be a little more adventurous. For example, denim is having a moment, and you can experiment with different types of jeans in this look, from stonewash to acid wash. Just remember that it’s best to avoid jeans in a very pale or faded shade, as these will likely clash with your suit.