Guys, I think it is time we all had a serious discussion on wedding attire.
Post after post has gone by often from newbies, people who cared little about their dress until they suddenly realised that they needed to look their absolute best on their Big Day and we have all idly sat back and sanctioned wearing all sorts of more casual styled suits on the grounds that "hey, it's your big day who are we to tell you what to wear?"
OK at the end of the day it is the groom's personal choice and all we can do is give advice. But, if this were a women's fashion forum and someone asked if black, or red - or tan - would work well for the bridal dress would we just sit back and say: "hey, it's your big day who are we to tell you what to wear?"
At the end of the day, our brides end up having a ball of a time fussing over ever little detail of their dresses while us guys get landed with a cheap and nasty piece of rental junk. Little wonder grooms are looking at wearing a lounge suit for their weddings.
A factor that further compounds things is that proper day time formal wear is hard to find - unless you go bespoke. Even then many bespoke tailors have lost the skill of making a proper coat with a waist seam (as you find on a morning coat, a frock coat, or a dress coat - the back and torso of which are all cut the same, only the skirt being different). I just enquired with a tailor who is the third generation in a family of tailors and he said to me that his father taught him that the amount of work that goes into a morning coat is 1 1/2 times and for a dress coat twice the amount of that of a lounge suit coat.
The end result is that when you do see morning dress being worn it is done poorly. Little wonder that grooms turn to options such as a lounge suit or else turn to the half (-hearted) morning dress as suggested above, with a coat lacking tails and cutaway front.
Yet, if done well morning dress is the only hope we guys have to really avoid being a mere vestigial sartorial appendage and distant after thought to our brides who go out of their way to look stunning on the Big Day in a traditional white wedding dress. Or at best she is in her Big Day dress, meant to be worn just on this one milestone event in her life, but he turns up in a mundane, wretched business suit. Sad....
When you do see the way they cut a morning coat in the old days, it really was something stunning. Look how elongating it is and how dapper the cut makes a man look:
This image comes from May, 1905 (gee, I love the silk facings in the lapels and - wow - look at those button holes going down the lapel). Note in particular the particularly marked waist suppression: that's why you cut the torso and skirt separately with a waist seam in between. That waist seam allows you to cut with the most exquisite degree of waist suppression. Little wonder the Italians call a morning coat a "tight" (using the English word). Tailors today are too use to cutting with the post-Scholte drape and the end result is a grotesque caricature of the traditional coat with a waist seam, completely lacking shape.
You really have to remember that at the birth of this type of coat in the 19th century they cut coats with an immeasurably more pronounced hour glass figure:
The first image is from Paris, December 1836
The second image dates from 1846
The whole purpose of having that seam there through the waist is to allow the tailor to cut with an optimal degree of pinched waist suppression followed by flare in the skirt. The resulting hour glass figure is incredibly flattering and elongating in a way no lounge suit coat could ever remotely hope to emulate.
I know you guys are going to say that day time formal wear has become largely extinct especially in the US etc etc etc, but the Italians still wear morning dress to a wedding, including the guests:
And if the bride is going to wear white AND with the wedding taking place in a historic mansion, the only truly appropriate dress for such an occasion is surely morning dress?