See More Great Picks
Shop Our Fashion Finds

Home > Men > Clothes & Conversations > Men's Fashion Articles

Clothes & Conversation: Men's Sartorial Tips

Like this tip?
Shop related products:
Pinterest Pin It!
05/05/2015

The Spring Wedding Invitation Glossary: A Gent's Guide to What to Wear

So, you got the wedding invitation and you agreed to go – even though it might be interfering with watching a good baseball game or getting in a round of golf. Maybe you’re truly looking forward to the party. But do you know what you should be wearing? We talked about this for fall, and with June being the most popular month for marriages, talking about it for this season is just good service. We always joke that a wedding invitation should come with an example picture of what to wear, Formal, Semi-Formal, and Casual can mean so many different things, especially when it’s mixed in with settings like a beach, urban park, rustic barn, or the grounds of a country club. At the end of the day, you want to look great and at least equal in importance - you want to look appropriate. So, let’s take care of that today.

Once you’re done here, head over to our Fashion Finds article, “8 Essential Gents’ Looks to get you through Spring/Summer Wedding Season in Style” where we’ll break down each wedding category with complete looks to help you be a well-dressed guest.
http://www.hugoboss.com/us/boss/stars-glamour-modern-fit-notch-lapel-tuxedo/hbna50194045.html
BOSS Hugo Boss - Stars/Glamour Virgin Wool Notched Lapel Tuxedo
Black Tie. While White Tie is the most formal (a tuxedo, with tails), that is pretty straight forward, and not all that common, so we’re going to jump right into Black Tie. This is almost always an evening affair. And this dress code is generally specified on the invitation, so this one is actually pretty easy to interpret. This is your chance to break out your tuxedo (or get one, they’re worth the investment, since they’re such a classic). This all wool tuxedo from Hugo Boss will surely get you on the best dressed guest list. The narrower lapels on the jacket and narrower legs on the trouser give it a modern look, with a coordinating fit that is trim and updated, but still suitable for most gents. Of course, you can opt for a formal black suit and tie, as well, if it’s a more modern or younger crowd.
http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/hickey-freeman-beacon-b-series-classic-fit-wool-suit/3639540
Hickey Freeman - Beacon - B Series Classic Fit Wool Suit
X
Hickey Freeman - Beacon - B Series Classic Fit Wool Suit
Beacon - B Series Classic Fit Wool Suit
Hickey Freeman
Sold by: Nordstrom

Shop It
Fit Guide
Formal. If it’s an evening affair noting that dinner will be served, and nothing is specified for your attire, this is probably what they mean, as it’s the most common. . There may be an outdoor component to this, like the ceremony or cocktail hour, but it’s generally still in a more formal setting like, a country club or hotel. “Black tie optional” will generally fall in to this category, as well, which of course, means just that – feel free to wear your tux. However, you don’t have to, and if it’s just formal, we suggest sticking with a conservative dark suit, crisp shirt and dressy (more conservative) tie. Since this is still a festive occasion, you can play with some seasonal color in your tie or pocket square. This investment-worthy classic fit suit from Hickey Freeman is just the kind of suit we mean. This dark navy timeless 2-button can be quite formal with a white shirt, dark tie and black shoes; while fashionably appropriate with a striped shirt, tie, and brown or tan shoes.
http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/samuelsohn-classic-fit-check-wool-suit/3937366
Samuelsohn - Classic Fit Check Wool Suit
X
Samuelsohn - Classic Fit Check Wool Suit
Classic Fit Check Wool Suit
Samuelsohn
Sold by: Nordstrom

Shop It
Fit Guide
Semi-formal, Dressy, Festive. You should stick with a suit to cover all of these. These types of weddings are usually evening cocktails/passed hors d’oeuvres, champagne/dessert, a brunch, high tea, or lunch. And this will generally cover those “dressier” outdoor affairs, too. You can definitely have some fun with your attire, especially in the warmer weather. Play with color in your shirt or add an updated patterned tie, like a floral or check. Of course, the classic black, whites, and blues are absolutely appropriate – and erring on the side of caution won’t make your look any less appropriate. Just know you have options. This classic-fitting Samuelsohn suit is one of our favorites. The subtle navy plaid is great for any semi-formal event, and can pair with a pattern shirt and colorful tie for a festive wedding look that is appropriately out of the ordinary.
https://www.jcrew.com/mens_category/sportcoatsandvests/cotton/PRDOVR~C4840/C4840.jsp
J.Crew - Ludlow Sportcoat in Fine-striped Cotton
Dressy Casual, Casual, Beachy. This is usually reserved for day events, often outdoors, and can even be a destination locale. You can do a great pair of linen or cotton pants with a button-down shirt, perhaps a tie, and sport coat. In any setting, this is not the time to break out your Hawaiian shirt or shorts, unless your hosts ask you to. Remember, they are still paying good money for this affair. This J.Crew sport coat is done in their contemporary fit in an all cotton grey and white stripe that would work perfectly. You can wear it with white flat front cotton twill pants and a blue chambray button up shirt for a dressier casual wedding. And you can make it truly beach casual with a knit polo or linen t-shirt.
 

Comments (2)

how about a tan or light gray suit maybe a vest colorful lining ecru or white shirt plain or small pattern dark tie for an afternoon outdoor forest... Read more
5/5/2015 10:50 AM
mark braun