Last week we wrote a blog for wedding accessories for Brides. This week we are covering the men.
Your wedding day is most definitely one of the days in your life where you can get dressed up to the nines, so here are all the things that you can consider to personalise your look.
THE PERFECT WATCH
Whilst we suggest that a bride does not wear a watch, as no watch can finish off a look of a bride, but for the men, it is important. First of all to make sure they get to the ceremony on time, but can certainly finish the overall look
Normally somewhere within your wedding will be some kind of metallic, so you could look to match up your watch to this. So if your wedding has silver, then opt for a nice chrome/stainless steel. Nowadays men’s watches comes in all sorts of metals and colours. You can get Silver, Gold, Two Tone, Black, Rose Gold you have so many options now where you can match it to your wedding theme. If you are going for a Black Tie wedding then you want to opt for Silver or even a Black watch. According to your attire you may even opt for a pocket watch!
Now that we have covered all the colours, what you have to consider is Budget. Again it’s important to know what you want to spend and try not to deviate from that, or something else on your list will likely suffer. There are some great watches out there that are not too pricey and the good news is there are watches that fit any budget. Starting from the likes of Citizen, right up to the more luxurious of Rolex and everything in between.
Then you have to decide what you what from the watch in terms of abilities. Do you want analogue, digital, manual, automatic or quartz movement, do you want bezels. So before you shop for your ideal watch, it’s worth familiarising yourself with the watch displays, movements and the kinds of bezels.
Taste/Appropriateness. So you may well love a bit of diving across the world, but buying or wearing a clunky dive watch has no place for your wedding day nor does a sports watch which would just look tacky with a suit. So think wisely about your look over your wants. It does not have to be fancy or flashy, but nothing wrong with some bling for your wedding day. Just make sure it is classy and suits your attire.
Okay, this should be a simple purchase right? No... it’s actually more important of a decision than you think.
A pocket chief is a timeless classic and an absolute essential for the groom to finish off your look, and not to mention it is handy to have in case you get emotional (and that’s fine to have tears of joy). Generally they are for aesthetic purposes, but can make or break your look so getting it right is equally important as the rest of your outfit.
You will want to look back at your wedding photos and know that you looked your best on their big day and whilst it is often good to match the wedding theme of the wedding, would you prefer something that would reflect your own personality? It’s all very well playing it safe and being in line with the wedding theme, but there is little point going for a flat plain colour if you are packed with personality, don’t be afraid to go for some pattern design and if you like a bit of attention, then go all out and make it a talking point. Who said you can’t done a superman handkerchief?
If a bride spends so much time and attention to details, then why not the groom too! However if you have a fancy button hole, you may just want to keep it as a flat fold (we cover folds further down). The button hole will stand out both with its colour and that it sits prominently on top of the jacket so by keeping it simple you will ensure a more elegant finish. You can’t have elegant and personality, it has to be one or the other!
No we all know that silk is a safe option but you wanted to add some texture then why not consider a nice wool-silk blend to bring this baby to life a little more.
Other options would be to go for a luxurious linen pocket square, this is a good option if you have a more casual style wedding and ideal if you have decided to stay away from wearing a tie, and ideally suits a beach wedding. We previously published a blog on “the fashionable groom”, go take a little read after you have finished up here. Here is the link
SIZE OF HANDKERCHIEF
Obviously the material will define the size that you want but for most pocket squares used on your wedding day will be silk. You want to make sure if isn’t any bigger than 40-42cm square and will prevent bulging. However a 45cm one will stop it from slipping down into the pocket as you move around. However its worth noting that only the cheaper ones will move around as they are normally only around 30cm. if you can find one that has a hand rolled hem it will help keep the structure in place when in the pocket and will be much nicer to look at.
WHICH HANDKERCHIEF FOLD TO USE?
So should you opt for a white square, which is ideal if you have a black tie wedding, then you want to stick to flat fold to give it that lovely crisp look across your dark pocket?
There are other sharp pointed folds that you can choose from if you are having a formal wedding, but pocket square allows you a little fun and a point of difference in your otherwise formal outfit but if you have opted for a patterned or colourful square then opt for a puff fold. To give you a helping hand on your special day, here is a link to how to fold your pocket square. Click here
Personally I like the stair fold, but it is one of the most difficult to achieve. So make sure you look at what you may like and start practising soon. Don’t leave it to the day to watch a video! It’s too important
TURN YOUR HANDKERCHIEF INTO A KEEPSAKE
If like my partner, you are a very sensitive soul, then you may even want to consider getting the fabric embroidered with your wedding day in one of the corners. It is not for showing, but a great keepsake from your wedding day just for you. You could even want to do this for your groomsmen and have their names embroidered on them.
There are 1000’s of options here and your wedding day is a big day for you, so it is important that you show off your personality. Cuff links are a perfect way to do this!
Obviously you can match them up with the metallics of the day if that is the look you want, but you don’t have to opt for something safe or even serious, again you may want to opt for personalised option and have them engraved with your wedding day or even inject some of your own personality. You can easily find something that represents one of your hobbies or even relatable back to what you do for a living. They don’t just have to be something that just keeps your shirt cuffs together.
It seems that buttonholes travelled to England during Medieval times and whilst the grooms would have been with or without their armour, these colours would be displayed on their left lapel the same as they are worn today. It is also believed that it is to worn of evil spirits that will cause the groom to turn his heart against the bride and refuse to love her.
WHO SHOULD WEAR THEM
The buttonholes, sometimes referred to as boutonnieres, are usually worn by the groomsmen in the bridal party: the groom, best man, ushers, father-of-the-bride, father-of-the-groom, and sometimes the page boy. However the grooms would normally stand out more than the rest.
So it’s normally decided by the person that organises the flowers, but do have an open discussion about this if you have any strong views.
I had one couple (only on the day coordination, as marvel weddings are not my forte) but this is what the groom opted for! I couldn't even tell you what it was and I appreciate it is not a natural pick for everyone, but suited the theme and was certainly a talking point.
TOP TIP: If you are choosing a Rose flower for your Button Hole, generally the grooms are slightly larger than the groomsmen to stand out more. However, the amount of roses that have been too heavy for a button hole and before you know it you are walking around with just a stem so make sure that your rose is not so big it becomes too heavy for its purposes.
TIE / CRAVAT / BOW TIE
So naturally if you are opting for a Black Tie wedding day, then the natural choice would be a bow tie, but I have also seen some amazing weddings where the mean wear tweed and braces and a bow tie works perfectly with this too.
Apart from personal choice that may dictate your choice, often your wedding venue will also set the style for your wedding attire.
If you are getting married in a stately home, it may suggest that it would be more appropriate to wear a cravat, but if you were getting married in a tipi, then you may opt for a tie which is slightly less formal than a cravat.
TIP: Cravats are worn shorter than ties, so you may want to consider wearing a waistcoat.
Then you want to consider your theme. If you are having a festival theme, you may want to consider a quirky bow tie to suit the personality of the day. Also a good velvet jacket always works great with a bow tie. However each theme should have its neck wear carefully considered. If you are one of those people that wear a tie on a daily basis for work, then you may want to opt for a cravat just so that you feel different from your everyday business look
HAVE A CHANGE
Now you can also mix this up a little. You could consider a cravat or tie during the day, then swap it to a bow tie for the evening. After all if your bride can make changes, remove her veil, bustle up her dress and add a bling belt to give them a different look, then you are more than entitled to mix it up a little too. Long gone is the day where a wedding day was all about the bride.
If you are having a same sex wedding then you may want to choose something different from each other. You have so much more scope to pick and choose as there are two of you, this is where your own individual personalities can really shine. Most importantly, have fun experimenting and find the style of neck wear which helps you feel special on your wedding day.
So don’t just decide on a whim, go shopping and enjoy the process!
WAISTCOATS OR CUMMERBUND
Well firstly it goes without saying that if you are wearing a cummerbund, you wear a bow tie, so this will automatically define your choice of cummerbund or waistcoat.
Needless to say wearing a waistcoat will complete your look because without one your suit will just look like an everyday work suit.
Wearing a waistcoat allows you to remove your jacket whilst still looking the part and still looking smart and if you get a waistcoat that has lapels it will add that formal touch even once you have removed your jacket.
Again we say you can express your personality here. You can pick out the colours in your scheme and if you have a plain tie then consider having a patterned waistcoat to show off your personality.
TIP: If you are opting for a waistcoat make sure it has a sliding adjuster at the back at the waistline. With so many men being more health conscious and so many having a torso that leaves you larger at the top and slimmer at the waste, just make sure it’s not too small and adjust it at the back for that tailored look.
GETTING THE RIGHT SIZED WAISTCOAT
So other than a wedding planner, I am a professional Toastmaster and the NUMBER ONE RULE, is not to allow the shirt to poke out under the waistcoat. It’s a massive no no and looks awful. It looks just as bad for a regular waistcoat. So if you are a much taller frame with a long torso or fuller figure make sure your waistcoat is long enough to sit over your trousers. You will find any good place to get waistcoats available in regular, long and extra-long. Always remember what you want your photos to look like when you revisit them.
TOP TIP: If you are going to wear a cummerbund, make sure you wear with the pleats facing upwards. This is the right way to wear them!
HATS AND GLOVES
It’s completely personal choice but it’s fair to say that hats and gloves are really a finished look for a very formal wedding and mainly worn by royals or the military to complete that overall look.
TOP TIP: If you are having a videographer for your wedding day, no matter how hot your day is, you may want to consider putting your jacket back on for speeches. (Same goes for your other speakers). The overall look when you look back at your video in years to come will be much smarter.
ANOTHER TOP TIP: it’s worth having two shirts so that you can feel refreshed for your evening reception. Nothing worse than getting married on a really hot day and feeling sweaty for the entire evening. You’ll be glad to have a change of shirt.
Wedding shoes are also key to your look. Your suit will really influence what shoes you choose, so once you have your outfit chosen you are ready to choose your footwear.
So black tie weddings look amazing and are common for a formal wedding and it never tires. If your suit is black, or even predominately black, then black shoes are a given. DO NOT choose brown!
So whilst you don't have the options that girls have, you will then have to consider style over colour. This is where you will achieve a great look. You have options for penny loafers, tassel loafers, patent leather, classic brogues or feeling confident then spats. Now I love a pair of spats!
INFORMAL GROOM SHOES
Many grooms are rocking the more informal vibe nowadays so you have way more scope over a formal shoe. If you have a tipi or festival style wedding you may even opt for a converse which can look great, not to mention comes in different colours.
if you are wearing tweed, this is a classing pairing and a wide choice of colours. Navy, Red, Green, you name it, there are way more choices in this style. Then if you add a contrasting colour in your lace, you can make them your own.
Many grooms noways like a coloured suits these days, my most far out was purple! If you’re going for colour, here’s a run-down of the best combinations to consider:
Navy – Black, brown and even burgundy would look great
Grey - if your suit is grey, black or burgundy will suit whilst a light grey suit wil work with black, burgundy or a light brown
Beige - if you have gone for a summery coloured suit, then think brown suede loafers or a white converse
Happy Shopping boys!