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Diary Of A Bride-To-Be Week 8: The Suit

Three words: Harvey Nichols Sale. Within half an hour he’d found a suit, tried it on and bought it. The trousers still need to be hemmed, but otherwise it fits like a glove. 

Contrast this with my three (so far) separate visits to Sylvia, including two fittings, and it’s enough to make me a little envious. Only a little, though.

The suit is from Corneliani and it’s somewhere between cornflower and navy blue. Is it strange that I got misty-eyed when I saw him in it? Maybe so, but I had a sudden premonition of him standing at the altar looking serious and smart.

His shoes are from Jeffrey West (also on sale) and his shirt is to be confirmed because he’s thinking about having it made. In the absence of a bespoke suit, a bespoke shirt seems a special touch, and friends have recommended Guy Field London and Ede & Ravenscroft.

The suit-buying process has brought up a question about our dress code. The groom-to-be is wearing a two-piece suit as opposed to a morning suit, but some members of our friends and family will own morning suits and may expect to wear them.

We’re in favour of anyone wearing whatever they want to wear, but should we make it clear when we send out the invitations that the GTB is not wearing a morning suit to save embarrassment? Do the same ‘upstaging’ rules apply in this respect as they do for outfits worn by female guests? (I’m hoping no one else will opt for floor-length cream lace, but you never know).

And if we do decide discreetly to signal that morning dress is not expected, will that mean that women are less likely to wear hats?

If we’re talking in biscuit terms, on a scale of traditional (Custard Cream) to alternative (Jammy Dodger), our wedding will be somewhere in the middle – a Chocolate Hobnob, if you like. I’d be disappointed if guests didn’t wear hats if they want to – fancy outfits are part of what make a wedding special – but I definitely wouldn’t stipulate that they have to be worn (Debrett’s has my back on this: they’re ‘by no means compulsory’, apparently).

Weddings, eh – we’re just scratching the surface of the manifold quandaries guests have to contend with. Here are some other dress-code related questions I’ve encountered on my planning travels:

  • I’d like to wear a hat, but the mother of the bride isn’t wearing one. Does that mean I can’t either?
  • The dress code is black tie and it’s an evening reception – can I wear black to the wedding?
  • I’ve got three weddings this summer. Is it OK to recycle the same outift?
  • Two male friends are marrying each other. Can I wear a cream dress to their wedding?

The answer to all these? Ask. It’s better to check with the couple than risk causing offence or embarrassment on the day. The likelihood is, having had the forethought to consult them first, you’ll do neither.

Days remaining: 101

Spend: £2,357/£10,000

Shoes £190

Suit £595

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