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Back in October I had posted about making a statement, accessories for the big day. This time around, we’re going to focus on the men! These days it seems as though men have just as many options as women in terms of making a statement with their neckwear. Different colors, different patterns – even the option of combining different tie shapes within the wedding party. These guys really have me impressed (or perhaps it’s the brides I should applaud).

bowtiewedding3 bowtiewedding4 Aaron Shintaku Photography via JL Designs

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Jen Fariello Photography via Elizabeth Anne Designs

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Mark Brooke Photography via Green Wedding Shoes

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T Law Photography via Wedding Obsession

Concept-Photography

Concept Photography via Occasions Online

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Jagger Photography via Green Wedding Shoes

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Allison & Chris Britton Photography via United With Love


The men should have just as much fun as the women do when picking out their day-of attire, don’t you agree?

I’ve worked in the wedding industry long enough to know the guys don’t get much love. Especially when it comes to what to wear on the big day. And, color? That’s another topic I could ramble on about given most couples don’t take enough risk. I know, I know.  A matter of opinion, but it’s true. Until then, I’ll leave the guy advice up to Tyler. Find out how to best dress your guys and build the perfect color story for your big day. – Brit


After choosing the perfect gown, the bride tasks her groom to set out for his and his groomsmen’s clothes comporting with their agreed upon color schema. Easy enough, right?  Suits and tuxedos are just that – suits and tuxedos.  Tuxedos are black. Suits are black, grey, navy blue. Maybe shades of grey and blue, but that’s easy (for this exercise, anyway).  Then comes down to the ties and/or vest.  In an effort to simplify, many wedding parties pursue a monochromatic theme.  The bridesmaids wear color X, and so it naturally follows that the groomsmen wear matching color X.  Closer and closer to the date of the wedding, almost to the point of panic, the challenge of finding a matching tie/vest for the groomsmen to accompany the bridesmaids’ dresses has proven nearly impossible! But WHY?!

As a veteran luxury men’s clothing retailer, I have witnessed the above scenario time and time again.  The reason for this difficulty is simple:  Each retailer has either released the current year’s collections with different color stories or if the color story is similar, the dye lots or shade variances do not match up.  There is almost a guarantee of this mismatch once you cross retailer lines.  The question becomes, “How can we avoid this?”

TieColors

Counter to the “convenient” advancement of a color-matching scheme, we look to complements.  In my previous post, I alluded to the analogy of a bouquet of flowers.  Imagine your wedding party… My bet is that everyone is of different shapes, sizes, skin tone, hair color, etc.  In fact, I guarantee it.  The aesthetically pleasing and fanciful floral arrangement is rarely multiples of one flower or one color, rather, many different types of flowers and complementary colors.  This natural diversity is in and of itself beautiful.  In men’s wedding fashion, ties (bow ties or long ties), cumberbuns, vests, and suspenders may all be utilized in some form as accents of color. Perhaps, you seek to rival the equally vivacious bridesmaids dresses giving rise to an even more bombastic couple.  Or perhaps, in contrast, you desire the groomsmen to project a more subdued and supportive role to the groom himself.  This can all be achieved through color variety

cpobke-wedding-05 Picture 19 Pobke Photography

The key in this grand scheme is to find suitable color complements to not only each other but to our surroundings.  As an associate, I like to ask a lot of questions so that I may ascertain a good color story.  What time of the day is the ceremony? Will it be inside? Outside?  Is it rural? Urban?  On a beach?  What color is the sand?

Picture 23 Jill Thomas Photography

By seeing the bigger possibilities, we can capture the essence of a truly stunning occasion as well as making it all the easier to plan.

So, I’m pretty excited about today’s post. I can’t take any of the credit for it – that all goes to my friend, Tyler. The “first look” planning and day-of attire is almost always planned by the bride; rarely is the groom involved. So, I love Tyler’s take on the first look, and I’m hoping to see some of you grooms play a bigger role in what you wear.


This is my first post as a guest writer on Landlocked Bride. In my particular case, I would be a Landlocked Groom, though, I am far away from planning my big day. I have, however, provided wedding fashion consulting primarily for grooms in concert with their leading ladies for nearly 5 years now. I stumbled upon this very rewarding opportunity as a retail sales associate at various men’s luxury clothing stores that served as destination spots for formal wear, and have worked with parties boasting 2 to 12 groomsmen.

Some men walk confidently into the store with a firm idea of what they would like to wear on their wedding day. Others do not and bring their fiancés to help provide direction. The former men ultimately do seek permission from their brides-to-be in their final purchase. One thing is uniform – the decision for men’s clothing comes down to that of the bride. Pardon me if I may respectfully ask, but when did brides’ become experts on men’s tailored clothing?

joanna-goddard-first-look Max Wanger via Joanna Goddard 

You, brides, know that you wouldn’t for a second bring your man along when trying on dresses nor would you solicit his input on your final decision. Tradition would have it that you will surprise him the day of your wedding. You may have even dreamt of your ideal wedding well before you met the love of your life. And now with the accessibility of mood boarding sites like Pinterest and Polyvore, you have become your own wedding consultant. Kudos to you. Many men take a back seat to planning (whether by choice or design) and it is up to you and your parents. You do have a hard task ahead of you – one that may take months if not a year to plan. Remember though, at the end of the day, he will be wearing the clothes during the wedding, photos and the reception. So if there is one area where you might take a little pressure off of yourselves, try delegating the men’s clothing decisions to him.

Now, I, your writer, am not naïve to the risky decision you have made entrusting him to look the part while ultimately contributing to the fate of your wedding day photos. What lasts more than the ceremony? … The Photos! Many men might feel significant performance anxiety at the challenge; others may welcome it. But here is an opportunity to have fun with your wedding and to create a very exciting first look – for the both of you.

Bride with Long Veil and Groom First Look Sean Money + Elizabeth Fay via Style Me Pretty

To reiterate, I am aware you have set out to take part in a perfect wedding and throwing caution to the wind is not the first idea that comes to mind. So the biggest step is letting go. Your question to me is likely: How will I know that he and his groomsmen will not ruin my dream wedding? Good question. You don’t. This is where a friend/family member with whom you confide or a certified wedding planner comes into the picture. This individual will serve as a neutral party with your strictest confidences. They will have the implicit task of making sure your clothing decisions do not clash but rather compliment much like an assortment of flowers in a bouquet. I like to call this Wedding Wardrobe Insurance. All the meanwhile, they will maintain the secret wardrobe despite your prying – my eye is on you, brides!

Can you imagine your first look now? Is it more powerful? Seeing him for him and being surprised by his sartorial splendor…

Photographer: Max Wanger / Photographer: Sean Money + Elizabeth Fay

I love gift-giving. Whether it’s choosing a gift for a birthday or other special occasion, or just picking up a favorite snack for a friend on my way to see them, I love the act of giving carefully chosen items to people. If I’m not giving the gift of an experience (tickets to something, etc.), I try to go for something practical that will stay relevant in that person’s life long after the gift has been given. I think this is something to bear in mind when considering what types of gifts to give your groomsmen; After your wedding, as happy as they were to be in it, they will continue to be people and no longer your groomsmen. That being said, I’ve created some categories of gifts (I am not necessarily endorsing specific items within said categories) ranging from least to most practical after the wedding.

tie it up

More likely than not, your groomsmen will wear some kind of tie in your wedding. These can be a no-brainer and just be rented in a corresponding color to the bridesmaids dresses along with suits or tuxes, but more and more couples are opting for unique ties. These will typically be more expensive than a rental option, so giving this as a gift instead of requiring the groomsmen to purchase them can be a nice gesture.

Ampersand Tie,  Lace Ties (I am dying over the whole collection), bowtie

photo ops

I am all about fun, quirky wedding photos. Just as I love how these bridesmaid gift options create great photo ops, I adore when then boys get in on the fun too. Most times groomsmen are expected to be a little raucous, so there are lots of options here ranging from tame to more out there, most of which can still be used after the fact and serve as a reminder of the fun had on your special day.

Sunglasses:Memory Montage Photography, Super Hero Shirts: Tinywater Photography via Wedding Chicks, Socks: Jeff Simpson Photography

cheers

Of course not everyone consumes alcohol, but for those that do, a wedding is a perfect occasion to do so, especially as a part of the wedding party (though let’s keep it primarily post ceremony, please!). Why not give a gift that makes the merry-making more fun? Maybe skip the monogrammed flasks and beer mugs, and go for something a little more modern or personalized in a different way. (Bonus: These can make for fun photo ops too!)

Mustache Pint Glasses, Kebo Bottle Opener, Leather Baseball Koozie

utility

Men are practical. Giving them something they may even use daily is possibly the best investment on your part and something they’ll appreciate the most. This is one category I don’t mind the personalization as much, just keep it classy and please, don’t engrave “groomsman” on whatever the item is.

Lighter, Carbon Fiber Money Clip, Utility Tool 

 As I mentioned above, gifts that are experiences can be great too: think tickets to a sporting event, concert, sky diving, or whatever else your groom and his boys like to do together. Happy gifting!

These photos pretty much need no explanation.

The groom loves Batman. So why not have a little fun with it?



Images courtesy of Jeremy Lawson Photography

In continuing with our groomsmen theme for today, I had to share this.

And, for the record, he is not using the other tree to help him out.


Image courtesy of bobbi + mike

Because it’s Monday and we all lost an hour of sleep over the weekend, I present to you a bit of humor.  The kid in that photo is cracking me up.


Image courtesy of Amanda Wilcher Photographers

It’s great when a couple can really set the style for their wedding based off of the attire their attendants (bridesmaids and groomsmen) wear.  While, I’m a sucker for a man in a classic tuxedo with a bow tie, I’m quite the fan of something different.  Case in point? Our groomsmen will be wearing a stone khaki colored suit (more on this in a future “My Wedding” post).

This bride and groom opted to have their groomsmen wear khaki pants with a collared shirt, sweater and tie.  While, this is not a look for everyone at their wedding – I can truly appreciate what this couple is going for.  It has a classic feel, with a touch of uniqueness.

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Image courtesy of Angela Stott via EAD Weddings

What will your groomsmen wear?