Groom’s Guide to Fashion

Groom’s Guide to Fashion

Most guys don’t get gussied up every day, so we’ve created our Groom’s Guide to Fashion to help them get ready. If you are a groom, here are our insights into what to add to your closet and how to look handsome on your wedding day.

Choose Your Dress Code:

To help your guests know what to wear, talk with your partner and decide on the dress code.This should be based on the style of your wedding, taking into consideration the formality of your location and your decor choices. Be sure to include your code in your wedding invitations so everyone will dress accordingly and you’ll have fabulous group portraits and a cohesive look to your day. 

White Tie:

If your look is ultra-elegant, there is no more formal dress code than white tie. As the name says, you would wear a white bow tie along with a white vest, a black tuxedo with tails, a pocket square, classic cufflinks, and a white boutonniere. For the ultimate in refinement, you may even consider wearing a top hat with its nod to the romantic era.

groom-portrait-in-morning-suit-and-top-hat-photo-by-inbal-sivan-photography
Photographed by Inbal Sivan Photography - Austin, Texas photographers

Black Tie

For this look, you’ll wear a bow tie, a dark tuxedo or a dinner jacket. Even though the code says black, white, blue, or gray tuxedos or suits from luxury fabrics with matching vests are also en vogue and quite acceptable. Shoes should be fancy, socks should be dark or non-existent, and cufflinks should be elegant.

seated-groom-portrait-photo-by-john-joseph
Photographed by John and Joseph - Los Angeles, California photographers
fashion-portrait-of-groom-in-sunglasses-photo-by-f10-studio
Photographed by F10 Studio - Toronto, Canada photographers

Formal:

With this code, the bow tie may be replaced by a formal tie, and a nice suit or dinner jacket may take the place of a tuxedo. This is still a sophisticated way to dress that compliments women in graceful, evening attire so shoes stay fancy and cufflinks remain a must.

groom-and-his-guys-photographed-against-the-clouds-by-chad-winstead-photo-video
Photographed by Winstead Photo and Video - Greenville, North Carolina photographers
groom-adjusting-his-tie-before-wedding-into-dust-photography-seattle
Photographed by Into Dust Photography - Seattle, Washington photographers

Cocktail:

While you’ll still wear a suit and tie, you can forgo the tuxedo. This code will allow more leeway for your personal style and more color in your palette. Coming from the elite cocktail hours of the 1920s and 30s, the cocktail dress code is chic and decidedly stylish. Add a hat, a bright bow tie, or mix and match your colors and fabrics to look fashion forward.

groom-and-groomsmen-with-drinks-sasha-reiko-photography
Photographed by Sasha Reiko Photography - Seattle, Washington photographers
dapper-groom-tips-his-hat-photo-by-nick-kelly-photography
Photographed by Nick Kelly Photography - Colorado photographers

Wedding Casual:

Here’s where the tie and cufflinks become optional and fabrics like linen come in. A cross between formal and casual, this look requires you to dress up but now you have your choice about the patterns and accessories you’ll wear. 

groomsmen-showing-off-their-special-jacket-linings-photo-by-lindsey-paradiso-photography
Photographed by Lindsey Paradiso Photography - Seattle, Washington photographers
groom-with-groomsmen-with-caps-sylvain-bouzat-wedding-photographer
Photographed by Sylvain Bouzat Photography - France photographers

Destination:

When guests are coming to relax, creating a dress code that allows them to feel comfortable in their environment is key. For hot and cold climates, consider adding an insert to your invitation about what clothes they will need to pack. Light jackets and breezy shirts may be perfect for beach weddings, while wool jackets and even coats will be necessary at a ski resort.

groom-with-groomsmen-group-shot-photo-by-xiaoqi-li-photography
Photographed by Xiaoqi Li Photography - Virginia photographers
popping-the-cork-against-snows-mountains-bride-in-fur-stole-photo-by-daniel-colvin-photography
Photographed by Daniel Colvin Photography - Houston, Texas photographers

Alternative or Themed:

There is no standard dress code for this because it’s wide open as long as you don’t wear jeans or a t-shirt. We’ve seen weddings from bohemian to retro to Star Wars-inspired, and when the fashion is well thought out and fits the couple, it always works. Again, your guests will need instructions, so make sure they are clear and fun to follow.

groomsmen-with-suspenders-group-portrait-photo-by-shane-p-watts-photography
Photographed by Shane P. Watts Photography - Malta photographers
couple-share-lighthearted-moment-at-ceremony-m-and-g-wedding-photography
Photographed by M and G Wedding Photography - United Kingdom photographers
grooms-and-flower-girls-in-convertible-worlds-best-wedding-photos-by-philippe-swiggers
Photographed by Philippe Swiggers - Belgium photographer

Use This Checklist to Put Your Look Together:

Just check off the items you need and find them at least 3 months before your wedding.

Suit or Tuxedo 

Vest

Shoes

Socks

Tie, Bow Tie, or Cravat

Pocket Square

Cummerbund or Suspenders

Cufflinks

Watch

Hat

Boutonniere

Cologne

Hairstyle

cropped-groom-portrait-with-exotic-feather-bowtie-photo-by-dana-cubbage-weddings
Photographed by Dana Cubbage Weddings - South Carolina photographers
flatlay-of-grooms-clothing-and-effects-procopio-photography
Photographed by Procopio Photography - Washington, DC photographers

Do a Trial Run:

At least 8 weeks before your wedding date, try everything on to be sure it "fits to a t" and that you can wear your outfit comfortably all day and throughout the evening. If you need to have alterations or get new shoes, you’ll have plenty of time to take care of those things without stressing out.

Hire the Right Photographer:

Chances are you’ll never look more happy and dapper than you do on your wedding day. That’s just one of the reasons it is so important to https://www.worldsbestweddingphotos.com/top-photographers. Want more ideas? Check out our Fashion Gallery to find all kinds of good looks for you and your party.