Groom Vs. Groomsmen Attire: How to Dress Your Wedding Party

image source Neal Cruz on

You’re getting married and the wedding party on the groom’s side must be as memorably dressed as it is on the bride’s. It’s your special day, so you should stand out while meshing cohesively with your party of groomsmen. 

The theme of the wedding is an important consideration when it comes to dressing the groom and groomsmen. In this post, I’ll explore several wedding styles and types with ideas about how to dress the groom vs. the groomsmen beautifully and distinctly.

Formal Traditional Wedding

A richly decorated ceremonial space, a sumptuous banquet, and towering flower arrangements are all part of the romance of formal traditional weddings. Fittingly, the groom and groomsmen are in either black tie or men’s formal

While the black tie wedding demands a uniform look, the groom’s attire should indicate his special status. Achieve this with small tweaks that break only marginally from tradition. The groom may be wearing a different color tie for a black tie wedding or a different boutonniere than those worn by his party. Or he could wear a traditional tailcoat while his groomsmen wear tuxedo jackets.

The men’s formal look offers more latitude than the ultra-formal black tie. Switch up the color of the groom’s jacket or dress the groomsmen in matching suits, with the groom wearing a contrasting color. Whichever of these traditional formal looks you choose, ensure that you have enough time to get everyone’s custom tuxes and suits professionally tailored. The formal traditional wedding look is exquisitely impressive when the groom and groomsmen’s suits are sleekly fitted.

Informal Bohemian Wedding

The informal bohemian wedding is a favorite of those who eschew the sartorial strictures of tradition, centering the joyful celebration of love. Abundant wildflowers, rustic touches, and for Generation “Y” bohemians, the glow of neon signs are part of the backdrop for this style of wedding. The mood is playful and relaxed, so dress your groom and groomsmen for fun, frolic, and comfort.

Collarless, embroidered cotton shirts and informal pants in soft, natural colors add a distinctive bohemian touch. Board shorts can be substituted for pants to add to the ultra-relaxed vibe. Or go California Coastal for a beach wedding with soft, tactile fabrics and printed coastal shirts in youthful cuts. Anything goes, so your imagination can run wild in the complete absence of sartorial rules!

Al Fresco Summer Wedding

At an idyllically-set summer wedding, sunlight glances off glasses and silverware on tables laden with celebratory food, set in the grass. The airy informality of an al fresco wedding is where you can deconstruct the more traditional model’s sartorial rules.

While still a “dressy” occasion, summer outdoor nuptials lend themselves to fresh takes seen in fabrics like linen and cotton blends. Lighter colors are preferred, so dress your groom and groomsmen in pastels that reflect the season in lightweight menswear coordinates.

Set the groom apart by contrasting the color of his jacket and pants to those of the groomsmen. The groom might wear coordinates in the same color or choose pants and jackets in colors opposite those the groomsmen are wearing. He might also match a tie and shirt in a contrasting color to his party’s look to signal that it’s his special day. 

Tropical Destination Wedding

image source Francisco Sanchez |

The tropical destination wedding invites guests to savor swaying palms and an azure sea glistening in the tropical sun. Orchids and jasmine bloom in centerpieces on tables set in golden sand. On the beach, a simple archway of palm leaves frames the happy couple as they’re wed.

The menswear styling for this type of wedding is a highly personal decision. What the groom and groomsmen wear depends on the event’s planned formality. Just because you’re flying to Cancun or Playa del Carmen does not imply that your wedding style will be informal. You may want a formal affair but always remember: It’s the tropics!

Summer weddings aren’t your best bet, as this time of year is called the “rainy season” and tropical humidity can be unbearable for those unaccustomed. Instead, choose the more temperate months of December through April for minimal rainfall and far less “stickiness”. With daytime temperatures routinely reaching the 80s, lightweight fabrics are the key to dressing the groom’s party during these months. And because you’re in the tropics, light colors, long sleeves, and pants to protect against the sun and mosquitos are mandatory.

Groomsman Appreciation Looks Great on You!

No matter what type of wedding you have in mind, nothing looks better on you than appreciating your groomsmen. They’ve dressed in your preferred wedding style and stood up for you as you were joined in matrimony. They may even have traveled halfway around the world for your destination wedding! 

So, think ahead and spring for a gift that tells them how much their loving support means to you. Present your groomsmen with a keepsake they’ll cherish forever, reminding them of your steadfast bond.

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