Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Firefox, Sep 21, 2012.
All of these hit the nail on the head. I hate to say it, but your fiance sounds like a piece of work (I substituted the b' word out). Ask her how she'd feel about letting you pick what she and her bridemaids wear. When she has a problem with it, let her know that you feel the same way and that you want to work together. If you decide to just do what she says, then at least you'll have the black suit in your closet to remind you of the sweet, sweet day when you die and don't have to deal with her nagging anymore.
The strange thing is that my fiancee is very easygoing and low maintenance when it comes to everything else... I do think there's some truth to the theory that weddings make people go a little crazy, and not in a good way.
Just as a followup to my earlier comments, does anyone think that my groomsmen wearing black suits would be a problem if I were wearing something slightly different (i.e. midnight blue)? Andy seems to suggest in his article that slightly different colours, etc. aren't neccesarily a bad thing, as long as it's all in the same ballpark, stylistically speaking.
You probably have the essence of the traditional approach right there in that article (which wasn't written by Andy, thankfully) but someone who actually knows this stuff. He goes by Manton on this forum and you can see his Italianate pen name above the article. And, if curious, you can figure out the man behind. Maybe buy his book even
So, I've spent a little more time thinking through my wedding apparel (and discussing it with my fiancee). The idea of morning dress came up, which we both agreed would look very nice. However, my view is that it would be even less practical than a black suit. I can't imagine any other occasion where I would realistically wear a morning coat after my wedding, while a black suit or jacket may actually come in handy from time to time. And besides, although our wedding venue has a certain late 19th century/early 20th century vintage appeal to it, I think that morning dress would still come off as too formal.
However, while doing a little morning-dress-related research on SF, I happened upon another wedding thread. What caught my eye was a picture posted by Sator of a beautiful stroller/stresemann/whatever-you-want-to-call-it ensemble:
Both my fiancee and I agreed that something like this (or similar) would be absolutely perfect. As formal as it is, I can still envison situations where I could actually get some future use out of it (or at the very least, use out of individual components). This raises a couple of additional questions in my mind:
Is this something that could be realistically constructed in pieces (e.g. a MTM jacket, bespoke vest/waistcoat, MTM pants)? Or is this something that would be better done together (e.g. the entire thing MTM or bespoke)?
If I were to wear something like this, do you think it would look odd if my two groomsmen were to go with regular suits? I believe that they both already own black suits, so as a cheaper alternative, perhaps they could simply get striped grey pants made to go with their black suit jackets. Based on Manton's wedding advice, I would tend to think that it would be okay for each of us to look a little different, as long as we were in the same ballpark. Of course, this may depend on the styling of their suit jackets, which I haven't actually seen. Any thoughts?
5:00 might be a little late for morning dress, especially since you'll be wearing it for the rest of the night?
But to your questions, 1) in pieces is fine 2) i don't think it would look that odd. if you were in tails it would look odd. but a stroller not really imho.
That was part of my thinking as well. 5:00pm straddles the late afternoon/early evening territory and I really won't have the time (nor the inclination) to change between the ceremony and the reception. I read a suggestion elsewhere that one could change from striped/checked stroller pants into black pants for the dinner reception, but even that seems unneccesary IMO.
Stylistically, I know that the stroller is typically double breasted by definition. However, I really like the single breasted stresemann look above; I think it more closely replicates the morning coat/tuxedo look, and would also probably be more versatile in my wardrobe following the wedding. I also think that jetted pockets would look really nice, although the flap pockets in the picture above seem to work just fine. Perhaps flap pockets would be a better option for future versatility, since jetted may seem too formal in other contexts.
As for pants, I like the traditional cashmere stripe look, with a DB vest in a dove/pearl grey and a classic silver "wedding" tie. I'll probably skip the gloves/hat, as tempting as they are.
At 5:00, you are so close to even wear territory that I don't think anyone would think it odd if you just wore a tuxedo. You will probably get more use out of one than the pseudo-stroller you are contemplating, and way more use than a black suit.
Flap pockets can easily be converted into jetted pockets by simply tucking the pockets in. Jetted pockets do not have a similar capability. That said, for formal garments, I still favor the jetted pockets, as I'd never want to wear with flaps and sometimes they come untucked or look bulky when tucked in.
The biggest issue with the tux option is that my fiancee has an aversion to bowties. I suppose I could wear a tux with a regular tie, but that just seems wrong. In addition, neither of my best men own tuxes. They could rent, but as we all know, that's not ideal. The alternative would be me in a tux and them in their lounge suits; however, it seems (to me at least) that would look even stranger than me in a stresemann and them in black suits. And while I'm sure that there will be occasions in the future where a tux would come in handy, I think I can honestly say it wouldn't be any more so than an odd black jacket and pants. I'm 30 years old, and I can recall at most one or two opportunities in the last 12 years when it may have been nice to have a tux.
Perhaps most importantly, though, I just think that the stresemann look is great and would suit me very well (no pun intended).
Definitely do not wear tux with long tie.
Wearing a tux when they're in lounge is essentially no different than stroller vs. lounge. Tux and stroller are both semi-formal, just one is evening the other morning wear.
Here's what you do with your fiancee's aversion to bow ties (if you do want to wear the tux): find a good menswear store near you, and try on a full black-tie rig (be sure to have the low-cut evening waistcoat or a cummerbund, if you have the high-cut prom-style waistcoat it looks terrible), with black bow-tie, and have her come see you in it. It's an easy sell when you see it done right in person. There's really nothing better in all of modern menswear (if the tux can even be said to occupy a place still in modern menswear).
Regarding the black suit, since there should be 0 opportunites to wear it, even the remotest possibility of wearing the tuxedo again is better than the black suit.
I agree with unbelragazzo about the bowtie. When your fiance sees the whole thing done properly, she may change her mind.
Possible photos to enlist in the pursuit of proper black tie might be found here (particularly the "bow tie vs. long tie" section, which properly illustrates the folly of a necktie with formalwear in ways even the least sartorially knowledgeable can appreciate).
Bonus for Firefox: the guy who put that site together is also from Toronto.
I've always wondered this. Is the concept of groomsmen and bridesmaids a modern invention? It seems quite silly to me. Have they always been around?
Have your seen their "black suits"? Chances are they look just as bad as rented tuxedos... Make them spend some money or tell them they can't be up there.
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