Whether you own a classic tuxedo, opt for a rental or go with a semi-formal suit, accessories are the key to level-up your look. Accessories create impact, reflect individuality, provide useful support (like holding up your trousers) and coordinate the groom and his groomsmen with the rest of the bridal party.
Injecting color and personality into a basic suit can be subtle or eye-catching, but there are a few guidelines. We asked an expert how accessories can make the groom stand out in the crowd.
Doug Douglas, owner of Tuxes Too Formal Wear, has a long history in the wedding industry. “We’ve been in business for thirty years,” he said. “My mother owned The Bridal Path in Jackson for 47 years, so I grew up in the business.” Tuxes Too has been outfitting grooms and groomsmen since 1990.
“Color and texture play big roles in traditional menswear trends,” Douglas explained. “We are also seeing grooms and groomsmen come in with one-of-a-kind, customized items. The possible combinations are endless, which can be overwhelming, so we encourage grooms to visit the showroom in person so we can choose accessories that will complement their look.”
Cufflinks and studs are essentially wearable jewelry that serves a practical purpose. Cufflinks use a hinge to fit through the buttonhole to fasten the cuffs of a shirt. Studs lack the hinge mechanism and fit into the buttonholes on the front of a tuxedo shirt.
While once considered too formal for anything less than black tie, cufflinks and studs have made a comeback and now add attitude to anything dressier than business casual. Formal wear shops and fine jewelers can steer you in the right direction.
If buying new is out of your budget, vintage sets are often more affordable and unique. And 3-D printing with quality metals has made creating custom styles an accessible way to add personality, pop culture references and small doses of whimsy to formal wear.
Colored suspenders add color and sophistication to a groom’s look. “We are seeing a lot of colored suspenders with classic tuxedos,” Douglas noted. “While guests might catch just a glimpse during the ceremony, the flash of color on the dance floor is the kind of unexpected detail that adds fun to a classic look.”
Flashy socks have been on trend for a few years, but there are countless ways to coordinate themes, combine patterns and show out. “This is a strong trend right now,” said Douglas. “Add a touch of humor or incorporate a hobby, favorite sports team or wedding theme to an otherwise classic look.”
Pocket squares are another timeless staple in formal attire, but the new trend here is color and pattern. With a black suit or tux, you can’t beat the impact of a white pocket square. Black is also a bold, monoc look. “If you want to add a pop of color from your wedding in the pocket square, keep it subtle and make a bold statement with the tie,” Douglas advised.
Bow ties bring classic, next level sophistication to formal wear. “The long tie is going out of style, and we are seeing more and more bow ties,” Douglas said. But these aren’t your grandfather’s bow ties. Bright colors, interesting textures, unconventional materials (cork, ribbon, and even wood) and unique embellishments like feathers, flowers and more are gracing the necks of grooms everywhere.
Pulling these elements together to complete a cohesive, well-executed look can be daunting. “We advise grooms to come see us and bring any special items with them so we can see how everything will work together.”
This post is sponsored by Tuxes Too Formal Wear. For more information and to get expert advice, visit the showroom in Banner Hall.