It isn't uncommon for a man to feel like little more than background in the frilly, detail-orientated swirl leading up to his own wedding. If he's smart about what he chooses to wear on the most photographed day of his life, however, there's no reason he can't come across as the calm, cool centre around which the big day orbits.
Indeed, Victoria McPhedran, a designer and co-owner of the men'swear store Green Shag in Toronto, which specializes in dressing grooms, believes that a great suit, along with well-chosen accessories, can make you feel like a superhero version of yourself. She offers the following advice for men in the market for a top-notch wedding wardrobe.
Do not surprise the bride
Every groom has the right to express himself sartorially, but the big day is not the time for freestyling. If your bride is expecting you to appear in a classic tuxedo, you don't want to turn up resembling Prince. Let her know ahead of time if you're considering any wardrobe choices that make a "bold statement" – though colourful socks, McPhedran concedes, are your call.
Weigh your options ...
For a warm-weather wedding, McPhedran favours wheat linen or summer-weight wool suiting in a light shade such as dove grey. If the groom, however, requires a foundation suit – that is, if he doesn't have more than a suit or two in his closet – her advice is to opt for an 8.5-ounce four-season suit in medium grey or navy, which can be worn again and again.
... and count your buttons
There's plenty of room for the groom to express himself in the smaller details of his wedding attire – in collar and tie style, cufflinks and pocket square – but when it comes to buttons, McPhedran greatly prefers the two-button suit: "The top button does up at the smallest part of your waist, giving you a great silhouette," she says, reminding grooms to keep the bottom button fastened during the vows and photographs.
To have or to hire?
A custom-made suit is an excellent addition to any man's wardrobe and a wedding provides the perfect excuse to order one. That said, there's no shame in renting a tuxedo if you have your heart set on wearing one and just don't have enough galas on your social calendar to merit buying your own. Shop around for a vendor who will spend time finding a good fit through the shoulders and in the sleeve and body length. Bottom line: Don't leave until you're perfectly happy with how the loaner looks and feels. (It's that superhero effect. It's hard to miss it.)
This is part of a six-part series on getting married in style. Next week, we look at writing the perfect vows. Click here for earlier instalments on planning the perfect proposal and planning a top-notch bachelor party.