If you haven’t noticed, wedding season is back in full force. Last year, the gatherings were seen as potential super-broadcast events, prompting the lovebirds to put their nuptials on hold and postpone them to a later date. (Love can wait when grandma’s life is on the line.) But thanks to the effectiveness of vaccines, that later date is… now. So you ended up here because you don’t know what to wear to all these weddings.
We hear you. We can feel you. All of our group calendars are locked down and loaded with other wedding obligations that we would love to participate in. But you’re a gentleman, and frankly, it’s fun to dress up, whether it’s a Hawaii wedding or a black tie affair. in a big city.
With our definitive, designer-approved guide, we hope to demystify dress codes. Confusion will dissipate and soon be replaced by confidence in your abilities to adapt to all kinds of occasions.
What to wear for the 5,000 weddings you have this year
How to dress for a black tie wedding
The black tie is about as formal as it gets (aside from the white tie, which is pretty rare these days), so you’d better dress the room up. And that, gentlemen, means a tuxedo. Don’t worry if you don’t have one. Using a costume rental service is a solid game plan when you don’t want to fork out the cash for something you’ll wear once, maybe twice a year. (We appreciate The Black Tux for their exceptional inventory and customer service.)
But if you’re looking for a stylish yet timeless tuxedo, stick with an all-black peak lapel that literally suits any ultra-formal event. Weddings, Fundraisers, The Met Gala, whatever you want. Variations in color and stitching may work for celebrities strutting the red carpet, but do you really want to be? this man at your buddy’s wedding?
Accessorize with a classic bow tie and seat belt, and pair it with a dark polished dress shoe. Here are some of our current favorites.
Indochino Hampton Black Tuxedo
Theory Chambers Fitted Tuxedo Jacket
Hickey Freeman Mens Tasmanian Wool Two Piece Tuxedo Suit with Satin Notch Lapel
What men’s clothing falls under cocktail attire
If you see a “cocktail dress” on a wedding invitation, that is also an invitation to introduce some personality into your evening look. Cocktail strikes a balance between button-down evening wear and everyday casual outfits. In other words, now is the time to lean into your style ambitions and forward-thinking fantasies.
Shots of eccentricity are certainly welcome, whether it’s the bold hue of your suit (you can even embrace a mix and match situation if you dare), the pattern or the print of your shirt. , or a flashy shoe. The general rule is to default to darker, more subdued colors across the spectrum. You can’t go wrong with these.
Tommy Hilfiger Essential Regular Fit Charcoal Gray Check Suit
Paul Smith The Kensington Men’s Suit Teal Cerruti Wool Stretch Slim
Etro Check Tailored Suit
How to dress for semi-formal or dressy casual weddings
This dress code is aptly named. Your approach should be exactly that: semi-formal. Think polite but not rigid or ceremonial. Time and setting are good safeguards to use for your look.
For a warm-weather daytime event, especially if it’s outdoors, lighter colors and fabrics are generally acceptable, such as a light gray wool suit or a blue chambray number.
A darker suit is certainly more appropriate for an evening wedding or one that takes place during the cooler months.
Pack a few different ties, belts, and shoes to try on while you get ready. Just make sure the last two items match. If the wedding is dress-casual, consider yourself freed from even more sartorial rigidity and skip the tie.
BrooksGate Milano Fit Check Wool Suit Jacket and Milano Fit Check Wool Suit Trousers
[Jacket, $360, Pants, $140; brooksbrothers.com]
Grant Club Monaco wool blazer and Grant wool dress pants
[Blazer, $450, clubmonaco.com and Pants, $225, clubmonaco.com]
Airforce Blue Reiss Extra Wool Slim Fit Blazer and Extra Wool Slim Fit Trousers
[Blazer, $545, reiss.com and Pants, $275, reiss.com]
What to wear for a beach or destination wedding
No, a beach wedding does not allow you to wear flip flops. If the dress code is “formal at the beach,” you always wear a suit and tie, although it is perfectly acceptable to go for a lighter color and a lighter material like linen. A tie or pocket square is also a good idea. If the word “formal” can’t be found, go ahead and pack your White Lotus tropical resort outfit, just step it up.
After all, you travel for miles to celebrate someone’s precious nuptials. For shoes, wearing a pair of smooth leather moccasins without socks is a good place to start. It is only if or when you see other people walking barefoot in the sand that you can throw your shoes off.
Orlebar Brown 007 Bond Matchstick Linen Blazer and Matchstick Tailored Linen Pants
[Blazer, $525, orlebarbrown.com and Trousers, $375, orlebarbrown.com]
Ted Baker — Linen Mock Neck Blazer and Linen Pleated Herringbone Trousers
[Blazer, $575, bloomingdales.com and Trousers, $195; bloomingdales.com]
Polo Ralph Lauren Soft Striped Seersucker Suit Jacket and Striped Seersucker Dress Pants
[Jacket, $300, ralphlauren.com and Trouser, $150; ralphlauren.com]
What to wear for an outdoor wedding in summer
When there is no formal dress code for a general outdoor summer wedding, just take it down a notch from what you would wear for a destination wedding. You still want to read the situation: what will the weather be like? Are you going to be in someone’s backyard? A botanical garden? The rooftop of the Metropolitan Museum? From there you’ll get an idea of what you can do, although we can guarantee shorts and a tank top won’t. Opt for a light wool or linen suit that won’t make you schvitz in the sun.
Faherty Reserve summer knit blazer and Movement 5-pocket pants
[Blazer, $400, fahertybrand.com and Pant, $150, fahertybrand.com]
Sene Studio Soho FlexTech jumpsuit
Polo Ralph Lauren Polo Soft slub linen suit jacket and Polo Soft slub linen suit pants
[Jacket, $280, ralphlauren.com and Trouser, $180; ralphlauren.com]
Tombolo ‘Black Tie Optional’ Cabana (Champagne) and Traveler Pants (Natural Linen)
[Cabana Top, $130, tombolocompany.com and Pants, $140, tombolocompany.com]
What to wear for an indoor winter wedding
Follow the tips above, but return them to the cooler months. For a winter indoor wedding, anything that could be interpreted as “business casual” will come in handy. Essentially, any woolen suit could work here, and you probably already have one in your wardrobe. You could even pair khaki pants with a tailored blazer because, let’s be honest, you’re probably going to throw that jacket away before you hit the dance floor.
Perhaps the most important thing is to have a crisp collared button down shirt ready to go, ideally something white or muted blue depending on the color of your suit. A tie is nice to have, but completely optional. And if wearing a pink polka dot sock makes you dizzy, you have our blessing.
Todd Snyder Italian Houndstooth Madison Costume
Banana Republic Italian slim sharkskin suit jacket
Alex Mill Corduroy Blazer
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