Wedding season is approaching. A time of love, jubilation, and simmering apprehension about what to wear to the upcoming nuptials. Wedding suit anxiety is a style conundrum that affects plenty of men in their 20s, manifesting in lots of idle browsing of suits as you wonder how you’ve made it this far in life without owning a proper jacket.
You want to look good, among the top 10 best-dressed guests at least. And if you’re pivoting from your usual style repertoire, you want to feel comfortable and not like a child trying on his dad’s suits. You want your outfit to turn heads and attract comments from other wedding guests, but you don’t want to stand out in a bad way.
So back away from the unfitted petrol blue suit you wore to your graduation and start thinking about how you can really kill it this wedding season. Read on for a breakdown of the four wedding suit styles for men that you’ll want to consider when choosing what to wear to a wedding.
Light and bright
Remember when Kanye West wore a Louis Vuitton suit to 2 Chainz’ wedding in 2018? You don’t? That’s because his ’fit was derailed by his too-small YEEZY slides, which is a shame because the suit was perfection. Its light shade of mint green is exactly the vibe to target this summer. That said, because it is a wedding, and because you’re not Kanye West, you could probably throw on a shirt underneath and make sure the suit isn’t creased.
West’s suit was a custom Louis Vuitton job, of course, but more accessible brands and designers are also flipping the color palette of traditional wedding attire for men right now. If you want to nail the dusty/pastel wedding style, you can buy a very reasonably priced light pink unstructured suit by French label Officine Générale. Exchanging lightness for brightness, if you’re really looking to make an impact, Acne Studios has a suit cut in one of the brand’s typically beautiful silhouettes in fluorescent neon orange.
If the wedding venue is outdoors in a garden, at a country farmhouse, or on the beach, you’ll want to make the most of the natural light and make those colors really glow. For a dash of patterning on your summer wedding suit, check out Noah, which has a full Madras print sports jacket-style blazer and matching pants in pastel shades of pink, yellow, and baby blue with a double-vented back and lateral mid-back vent. For footwear, simply pair with some neutral lace-ups.
Classic is a bit of an ugly word these days, implying conventionality and conformity. Wrong! The best suits that have ever, and will ever be made are classic black suits for black-tie events.
A recent GQ profile of Keanu Reeves decked out the actor in a range of black tailoring from Saint Laurent, Tom Ford, and The Row, and he looked not only iconic and handsome, but somehow perfectly formed, with strong posture and an air of elegance. Never underestimate the power of a classic black suit, and if your wedding invite says black tie, you’re in luck.
J.Crew delivers affordable classic black-tie suits with water-repellent fabrics and a bit of stretch in the fabric to make the suits more comfortable than you might expect of formalwear. Alternatively, if budget is no issue, there are classic black-tie options from the likes of Prada and Dries Van Noten.
Pro tip: if it’s hot and you’re concerned about overheating, try to find a suit made of a wool/mohair blend to keep things light and airy.
Loose and flowing
Slim-fitting suits have their place, such as on a Hedi Slimane runway circa 2005 (or, indeed, a Hedi Slimane runway today in 2019). However, consider how relaxed you will feel and how good you will look in suave, draped, billowing suiting from the likes of Our Legacy, which has an unconstructed double-breasted blazer and loose pants in a raw olive tone. The loose leg calls for a sharp piece of footwear to balance it out: either some Cuban heels, a patent black Chelsea boot, or a pair of light brown penny loafers.
For inspiration, check out the dark emerald suit worn by Marc Jacobs at his recent wedding to Char Defrancesco. Designed by tailor H. Huntsman & Sons of Savile Row, London (as was Defrancesco’s suit), the suit features a broad shoulder and pant legs that hang off the frame elegantly, complemented by white Gucci boots.
Of course, some weddings will be naturally extravagant affairs and therefore require a more opulent wardrobe. So if you really want to push the boat out while deciding what to wear to a wedding this summer, why not try the tailoring of British designer Charles Jeffrey, who offers a multicolor mixed tartan suit with matching pants.