How To

The Rules of Wedding Style, ca. Fall 2013

A former Gilt Man editor — and, more importantly, soon to be married man — on how to get your wedding apparel in order.

Nail the look, then focus on more important things.

To help future grooms navigate our wedding event — check it out here — we asked our friend Jonathan Evans for a little advice. What makes him qualified to dispense wedding style wisdom? He’s senior online style editor at Esquire, for one thing, and he’s a former Gilt Man senior editor for another. He also happens to be getting married the very same day our sale goes live. In other words, the man knows of what he speaks. Here, Jonathan’s five rules for tying the knot in style this season.

1) Go Classic.
“Even though my wedding isn’t a black tie affair, I’m wearing a tux. Why? Because, hell, why not? And, also, because of Cary Grant. While I was working out what to wear, I happened across a shot of him in a shawl collar tuxedo in To Catch a Thief. I immediately knew what I was wearing. You don’t have to channel old Hollywood if you don’t want to, but at least keep it in mind. Those men really knew how to suit up.”

2) But Not Too Classic.
“Even though I decided on a pretty standard silhouette (executed exceptionally by the good people at Eidos Napoli, I should note), I didn’t want something entirely by the book. The facings are shantung — matte, slubby, just the right amount of imperfect — and the fabric itself is midnight blue instead of black. We’re living in a new golden age of menswear. Feel free to push the envelope. Within reason.”

3) Skip the Patent Leather.
“There are a few purists who would consider this nothing short of blasphemy, but I personally believe that well-shined calfskin is a much better option than the glaring, plastic-y mess that is patent leather. Plus, a good pair of black, cap-toe oxfords will serve you well in a number of situations after you put a ring on it. Hard to say the same for patent pumps.”

4) Consider the Bow Tie.
“Even if you’re in a suit. Even if you’ve never worn one before and your dad has to tie it for you. No matter what the men of the modern red carpet have to say — and really, should you trust a guy that doesn’t even know how to hem his pants? — a skinny black necktie is not a formal look. This is a big day. Dress accordingly. (Take a pass on this one if it’s a sincerely informal wedding and you’re wearing something like a tan cotton suit. Or if you’re on a beach and not wearing shoes.)”

5) It’s All About Her.
“They’re going to be looking at the bride. She’s going to be looking at you. Make sure she likes what she sees, then let go and stop worrying about your damn shirt. Remember, it’s her day. Make sure she enjoys it.”

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