5 Tips on How to Dress for Your Wedding | A Groom’s Guide to Wedding Dress Code

5 Tips on How to Dress for Your Wedding A Groom’s Guide to Wedding Dress Code [0:00:00] Hi! I’m Antonio Centeno. I’m the founder of Real Men Real Style. Today, gentlemen, I’m going to give you five tips on how to dress for your wedding. This is basically a groom’s guide, an intro to style. I’m not going to get into the specifics of each type of dress code.

That’s something I’ve got an entire video on. I talk about black tie, formal dressing, semi-formal dressing, white tie, casual weddings. I know I could get into a lot more of this. If you are interested, you’re getting married maybe this year, getting married here pretty soon, go check out Smart Groom Guide. I go into a lot more detail there. In fact, that’s an entire course that helps a groom not only with the clothing, but also with the etiquette, gift guides, all of the little things that make weddings sometimes a hassle. I try to give you guys some checklist on the duties, even some music ideas, gift ideas for all the groomsmen and everything perhaps involved in your wedding. The purpose of this, I’m going to give you five tips.

These are very general, high-level tips, but they’re important because it all starts with number one, which is be the best-looking man you can be. Now, there are a lot of things we can’t control in life. Our face and the way it’s shaped, what we were given, we can’t really change that, but what we can do is we can work on the packaging. That’s one of the things I talk about at Real Men Real Style and my other website, A Tailored Suit, other websites across where I guest post. I always talk about the purpose of clothing is to help you be the best man you can be. It simply gives you a bit of strength. It’s like a piece of armor that fits on you on your wedding day, the day that you commit yourself to another person. It’s a sign of respect. That’s really what it’s about. You’re showing not only respect to your bride. You’re showing respect to everyone, your family, your friends, everyone who is invested in you and wants to be a part of your journey.

That’s why we’re dressing and you want to put your best foot forward. In those pictures, for decades, people are going to look back — you’re going to look back on those pictures. Your kids are going to look back on those pictures, your grandkids, and you want to in a sense be, “Wow! Grandpa was really handsome. I can see why grandma went for him.” That’s the kind of response you want to get, not something like, “Wow! I can tell this was in the 1970s,” which you can with some wedding pictures.

Now, point number two, start early and I’m talking about 90 days out if you can and that’s a bare minimum. The reason you want to start preparing all of this early, number one, you’re going to save a lot of money if you have time to start assembling. I own a custom clothier. One of the most expensive things I would say when a guy comes in is he needs everything rushed. Literally he’s getting married in two weeks and we’re having to stop everything, put his order up to the front overnight, that kind of stuff, which brings in point number two.

It brings in a lot of stress because if it’s not right, then you’re going to have to compromise. You’re going to have to find something that works. Give yourself time. Give yourself about 90 days. If you can give yourself longer, especially if you’re on a very tight budget, you could start looking in thrift stores. You can ask around. You can find things that you’re going to get for pennies on a dollar. You’re going to be able to save a lot of money. Have a short time frame? Okay, you’re probably going to spend a little bit more, but number three — and this goes with giving yourself time — practice what you’re going to be wearing. What do I mean by that? Actually wear the clothing. Now, a little bit more difficult if you’ve decided you’re going to go with black tie. Now, I talk about this in another video and in my guide to everything, when you should wear black tie or white tie.

A vast majority of you guys know — or a morning dress. You’re probably not going to go with that. Maybe you guys watching me over at London, perhaps you will, but for most people, the highest level they’re going to go is black tie or the tuxedo. I would recommend though thinking about suits. The great thing about a suit and how it applies to this point practicing is if you get a dark suit, you can wear it with other things.

All of a sudden, you can own that suit early. You can perhaps wear it out to an evening out of town with your fiancé. You can wear it around and you can possibly even wear it to work. You want to be careful. You don’t want to damage it. Ideally, what you want is to get a feel for it. Okay. I’m used to wearing this. What you don’t want to have is on your wedding day — and this is why I think a lot of formal clothing gets such a bad name, is we only wear it — and it’s almost like a costume. Clothing is a costume if you’re only wearing it for that one event and you’re not used to it. What you want is something that actually you’re proud to wear.

You’ve worn it before and you feel comfortable in. You’ve actually identified some of the hotspots, perhaps had them tailored and adjusted to fit by a local tailor or seamstress, so you’re used to wearing it. You feel comfortable in it. It’s not the first time and you can really dress things down by just wearing it open collar, white shirt or something like that, but ideally you want to practice wearing what you’re going to wear, especially the shoes. Don’t wear brand new shoes the first day. Practice wearing those shoes even if it’s around the house. Practice wearing the clothing. [0:05:06] Point number four, decide on a dress code and announce it. Now, I’ve talked about this. We’ve got from black tie to semi-formal to suits to almost business wear to a casual wedding. The thing is you want to be very clear not only with the immediate people that are going to be in the wedding party, but you want to let people that are going to attend. That’s one of the things and that’s a whole separate video in which people have asked me, “Antonio, I’m going to a wedding” or “Antonio, I’ve been invited to a wedding this summer.

I’ve been invited to a wedding on the beach.” Be very clear in the invitation what the dress code is, and if you have room, if you can expand on it, give people examples. Now, understand that as the groom, you’re going to be expected to be the best dressed man there. Well, maybe not, perhaps if you get married in Vegas and you’ve had a little bit to drink. Well, don’t get married if you’ve had a little bit to drink in Vegas. The point is the vast majority of time, the groom is expected to be the best dressed man at the wedding, so that’s going to set the standard for every other man that’s going to be attending the wedding, so be very clear what the dress code is and what’s expected.

Number five, communicate with your future wife. Now, I know some of you guys are saying, “Antonio, that’s where it’s all going to start. She’s in charge.” Well, I’d like to challenge that. I think it’s important that a man has a say, that he’s able to go back and he’s able to look at it. If you’re in the United States, we have this new tradition — and this is relatively new — in which you have all of these groomsmen and they’re all matching. Honestly, this came out of the rental industry because they said, “Hey, if we do this, we can rent more tuxes.” Don’t feel that you have to do this. What I like to do is see a group actually give a dress code and say, “Everyone needs to show up in dark, solid suits” that are classic, that fit them well, and we want to maintain this general look. But to be honest, that’s going to be perfectly fine. Give people direction. That’s the cool thing about a dress code, but communicate that with your bride.

Make sure she’s onboard with it. I think if you’re able to take the bull by the horns and you’re able to say, “Hey, I’ve researched this. I’m going to run with this. I’m going to make sure that everyone is up to snuff,” then she’s going to be fine with it. I’ve been to weddings, I’ve been in weddings in which we show up and everyone is renting and half of them don’t even fit. In fact, one time I remember we’re going to a wedding and my wife is adjusting people’s suits. She’s not even a seamstress, but she knows how to sew.

She’s adjusting people’s suits in the van as we’re heading to the wedding so that they fit a bit better. Half the stuff was ill-fitted. Guys, that’s what happens when you rent, nothing against rentals. I’m sorry. I know some of you guys out there own those types of stores, but the problem is when you’re not prepared. If you go through these tips, again, go check out Smart Groom Guide. I go into a lot more detail there. Guys, at the end of it, I wish you the best in your wedding and have fun on what is going to be one of the days that you’re going to look back — I’m not going to say it’s going to be your most fun day, but I will say it’s going to be one of those days that you’re going to remember for the rest of your life. You’re going to look back on it and your family is going to be proud that you are able to show up there and put your best foot forward for your future bride, for your family, and for yourself.

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