Thursday 17 January 2008


Yet Another article I wrote, this one for :

The Groom and His Party – Breaking the Rules!!

“What should the Groom wear?”

“What should the Father of the Bride wear?”

These are the types of questions that I get asked every day. As a business that has been established since 1958 we often get asked about the rules of etiquette regarding men’s wedding attire.

In years gone by we may have responded with: “Morning Tails are the correct dress for the wedding party, sir” and then proceeded to wander around with a tape measure occasionally raising an eyebrow.

I am sure we have all seen our parents wedding pictures and seen our dads wince as he remembers his wedding suit. This is because in the not-so distant past, rules and etiquette determined how a man should dress for his wedding.

It is now my great pleasure to report that, finally, things have changed!! Rules are no longer necessary; etiquette can be transformed, re-invented or consigned to the dust-bin.

But what do we do now? Now there are no rules, what should the Groom, Best-Man, Father of the Bride and Ushers actually wear? That is where we come into this, the professionals.


Tails Suits (Top Hat & Tails) is the most traditional of the wedding suits. Tails look great in the right settings (churches, listed buildings etc.) They are timeless and if you are a traditionalist these are perfect


They are traditional & Timeless.

They cutaway at the front, this is useful if you are not over endowed with long legs (you see more of them)

They are low buttoning, so you see more of the waistcoat.


They are very traditional!

They are long at the back.

They have a yoked back, therefore are tighter across the back.

¾ Length Suits (Edward):

This is the offspring of the tail coat. The more modern alternative to classic morning wear. They are 3 or 4 button single breasted coats which are longer than a lounge suit but should not reach the knee.


This is the more modern offspring of the morning tails.

They can be worn in a very formal way or can be dressed to look like a normal suit.

They are comfortable to wear.


Not always the most flattering for the height impaired.

Only a small amount of waistcoat is visible.

They do not always suit every size and shape.

Lounge (normal) Suits: A lounge suit, normal suit or day suit are all the same things. You have lots of choice here: Designer suit, Made-to-measure, colour, fabric, style and accessories.


A normal suit does not have to look like a work suit. A fantastic fabric is a fantastic suit!

This is a suit that can be worn again. (Very practical, this is a man thing)

Endless choice of fabric, style, cut size etc.


A normal suit is just that. Not as formal as morning wear.

This type of suit is purchased rather than hired.

The accessories will have to be organised separately adding extra planning.

Made-To-Measure: A made-to-measure or bespoke suit is a suit which is hand-cut and hand-made just for you.


The perfect size fit and cut.

You can have your suit made however you choose, you will have an endless choice.

You will receive professional advice every step of the way.


This is more expensive than hiring or buying ready-to-wear.

You may have to have at least an inkling of what you are looking for.

Made-To-Measure suits may take up to 12 weeks and would require fittings.

Waistcoats: Waistcoats are one of the most important parts of a groom’s attire. The colours and patterns must fit in with the wedding as a whole. You may choose to have the whole wedding party in the same waistcoat or you may choose to have your Groom and Best Man in the same and every one else in a different waistcoat. You could also have just the Groom in a different waistcoat. Always remember the look of the wedding photographs as a whole and try not to use too many waistcoats.

Cravats/Ties: Cravats come in a variety of different styles. The most popular of which is the rouche or scrunchy style. This style of cravat is available in ready-tied or self tie. It is always best to take receipt of self-tie cravats early for a little knot tying practice!

The colours of the ties or cravats can be very important. They must match the suits and waistcoats. They must also tie the colour themes of the wedding together. You can try to match the bridesmaids, flowers or Brides dress or all three!! TIP: Pure silk has a stronger more vibrant colour in a photograph than polyester.

Those were a few pointers to help you on your way. However your wedding is YOUR day, so do not be tied down by tradition. I am sure whichever suits you choose for your wedding will be the right ones for YOUR BIG DAY.


Marc Moore

Director of Jack Bunney Limited Est. 1958

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