How to Choose a Wedding Tuxedo

Groom's Formal Wedding Tuxedo

Groom's Formal Wedding Tuxedo

Unless James Bond is your best friend and he’ll let you browse through his warehouse size closet full of Armani, Ralph Lauren and Oscar de la Rente tuxedos, you’ll be thumbing through the yellow pages when the call comes, “you gotta wear a tux to the wedding”. Moreover, once you get to the store you’ll find there is a whole lot more to choosing a wedding tuxedo than just finding your size on the rack.

First of all, every man in the wedding party who’ll be wearing a tux has to take their cue from what the groom will be wearing (except for cousin Joe Bob who has been known to show up at a barbecue wearing a gold lame tuxedo with a paisley vest). So if you are the groom you need to know some of the elaborate tuxedo protocol involved, or more likely, follow the orders given to you by the wedding planner and your future wife. In fact, it might be a good idea to take one of them with you.

Wedding Tuxedo Protocol

Before we get to what kind and color tuxedo will be appropriate, remember you’ll have to contact all the other tuxedo wearers and clue them in as to what to rent. According to many wedding protocol experts it is incumbent upon the groom to provide (meaning pay for) the tuxes of the groomsmen or ushers. This may be a bit expensive, however it guarantees they’ll have the correct matching attire. By the way, this will also include shoes and socks. You don’t want one guy in the line wearing argyles and Nikes; not a pretty picture for the album.

The style of wedding tuxedo depends on two basic factors: the degree of formality and the time of day the ceremony occurs. “Black Tie” is for formal occasions after six o’clock. White formal shirt, black patent finish shoes, vest or cummerbund, black bow tie are de rigeur (though an embroidered cummerbund can be worn with a matching color bow tie). Ultra-formal evening wear requires a tailcoat (they’ll know what this means at the rental store) in black, white or color. Tie and vest to match tailcoat with a white wing-collar shirt. If the groom wears a tailcoat, the ushers/groomsmen can wear either tailcoat or regular jacket. White tuxedos are fashionable in tropical climates at any time of day. Other daytime wear includes a cutaway jacket, gray striped trousers, gray vest and ascot or four-in-hand tie. This is quite formal, so while your at it think about a top hat, spats and gray gloves. Slightly less formal would be what they call a Grey Stroller jacket.

Rule of thumb: the groom wants to have the most impressive wedding tuxedo at the celebration.


About the Author

Curtis McCoscoCurtis McCosco lives on the island of Kauai, Hawaii with his wife of over 20 years, KatRama Brooks. Together they own and operate Rainbow Weddings on Kauai. A professional wedding photographer for over 15 years, he is also a video documentarian, writer, and masseur. A practicing Buddhist, he also does Qigong on a daily basis.View all posts by Curtis McCosco

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