What to Wear on Your Big Day?
You’ve booked the venue and the band, you’ve got a shortlist of photographers and you’ve had more than one thought about going into the lucrative business of flower arranging. Your other half has several Pinterest boards on her style of dress and knows what colour the bridesmaids will be in but has anyone asked what you want to wear? And have you given it any thought?
Traditionally weddings are all about the bride, however recently we’ve seen a huge swing towards making sure the groom not only looks fantastic but feels every bit as special as the modern day not-so-blushing bride.
So what are you going to wear? If you’re Scottish, or getting married in Scotland the first question to ask is kilt or suit?*
*we get so few enquiries for traditional morning dress so thought it best to leave it out of this post
Kilts are timelessly classic, transcending seasons, venues and cultures, although often shrouded in a mix of tradition, folklore, mystery and nonsense. For too long have the kilt hire shops rented out wool / poly mix jackets and paper thin shirts to the naive would-be-groom and wedding parties that it’s become the norm to accept ill fitting jackets, muted tartans and cheap ties.
Kilts come in a variety of tartans, for your wedding day I would advise having it made for you and choosing your own tartan. Most Scottish surnames have an associated tartan that they can wear; meaning at some point in Scottish history a major clan approved the wearing of their tartan to certain surnames that didn’t have a clan chief. If you can’t find a Scottish surname (or don’t like the look of yours) there are district tartans which are designed for such an occasion, these are often a nice nod to historic or sentimental geographical links.
A kilt jacket and waistcoat should fit like any other jacket or waistcoat you have. I’m of the opinion that weddings require Morning dress or Day Highland dress and Prince Charlie jackets or Doublets should be exclusively saved for evening or black tie events such as dinners or awards.
On choosing a fabric for your jacket, it doesn’t have to be tweed. Tweeds are great, however there are so many beautifully soft wools and cashmeres available that challenge the rustic qualities and aesthetics of tweed for a more contemporary and softer look. Traditionalists will say that tartan should never be paired with another pattern, I disagree, done well a subtle pattern or texture through the jacket and waistcoat can help to pull the kilt outfit together.
If you choose to wear a kilt, good on you for keeping the tradition alive and bringing it into modern culture. When I’m helping clients with kilt outfits the most important thing to consider is the fit of the garments and the balance of the overall look – making sure light and dark tones or colours compliment each other perfectly and remember; subtlety remains clan chieftain.
Like the kilt, a wedding suit is elegant, timeless and classic; yet unlike it’s highland counterpart there are various factors to consider when choosing a suit.
For clients looking to have suits made for their wedding, the first questions I ask are time of year and venue. The answer to these two questions can usually direct the fabric choices; I’ve yet to meet a client who wanted a 3-piece Harris tweed suit for his July wedding in Como.
Once the fabric is chosen we then look at the styling and the cut of the suit. Your wedding day is a chance to showcase the very best version of yourself, to elevate your existing elegance and charm and to wear something special. That said, it’s vital that you are comfortable in your outfit and confident that on the day you’ll look and feel amazing in it.
A three piece suit is a great way to mix colours and textures; given that you can mix and match the combinations of trouser, jacket and waistcoat fabrics to either add a splash of colour or pattern, or to ground an otherwise bold pattern or hue.
Detailing such as a peaked lapel jacket, shawl lapel waistcoat, trouser waist adjusters or turn ups, can all add up to a look that stands out from the crowd with subtlety rather than ostentation, elegance not grandeur.
One absolute must have is a new shirt. I would always recommend a crisp white shirt for a wedding, it goes with absolutely every outfit and brings a real freshness to any look. With regards to ties and accessories, remember that they are there to compliment the outfit, not take over.
Do What You Want
Remember that above all your special day is just that, yours and special. Don’t let people tell you what you can and can’t wear or do and bring as much or as little personality into your outfit as you feel comfortable with.