Wedding fashion - tips for bridegrooms from a top tailor

Take some grooming tips from a top tailor so you don't let the side – or the bride – down

Brides spend endless hours searching for the perfect dress and don’t think twice about splashing out at least a month’s salary on the gown of their dreams.

Grooms, however, point randomly in the direction of something grey on a stuffed rack and say: ‘That’ll do.’

Okay, so not all grooms are sartorially inept, but few can equal the time, effort and cold, hard cash that their beloved invests in their wedding outfit.

Indeed, research carried out by Norton &Townsend, a Yorkshire-based business with a team of travelling bespoke tailors, shows that only one in ten grooms has a suit specially made for their big day.

Managing director Austen Pickles believes it’s time men made more of an effort for the girl of their dreams.

‘I’m constantly amazed that women go to such lengths to look a million dollars on their wedding day and yet men think it’s okay to borrow a suit, shirt and tie that don’t really fit,’ he said.

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‘There is no day more important than your wedding and yet men, in general, look absolutely awful. The pictures from your wedding day will last a lifetime – do you really want to be reminded how bad you looked for years to come?’

As with most things, there are huge regional variations in the Saltaire tailor’s research. Men in the south-east, for instance, are twice as likely to wear a bespoke suit, but as they still only reach the heady heights of eight per cent they shouldn’t really give themselves too much of a pat on the back.

The survey of 657 men in an online poll showed 64 per cent cringed when they looked back at their wedding pictures and a massive 89 per cent would opt for a bespoke suit if they had their time again.

Obviously not a man to mince his words, Austen says he firmly believesthe groom’s suit is as important as their speech and urged men to make more of an the effort: ‘Quite simply, the better the quality in terms of cloth, construction, fit and style, the better the groom will look and feel.

‘The point is that a bespoke suit doesn’t have to break the bank. Ours start at �495 and include thousands of fabrics from the finest mills in Britain and Italy. The measurements we take are precise, the patterns cut individually and the garments sewn by tailors with years of experience using traditional methods.

‘And it’s not just about price and fit. Most men hate shopping and loathe trawling the high street trying to find the perfect suit. A visiting tailor sees clients by appointment at their workplace or home to discuss their 107requirements and take measurements. So, no crowds, no stress and no time wasting.’

Norton & Townsend is the only nationwide visiting tailor business inthe UK. Established in 1990, it now employs a dozen experienced visiting tailors who cover the whole of the country.

The magnificent seven

Top tips for grooms in need of a little grooming

1: If your wedding is a formal affair, follow the morning dress code carefully. Your tailor can help guide you. But if you’re not comfortable with a smarter-than-smart look, then say something at the start. It’s no good waiting until St Paul’s is booked and the royal coach given a last polish before saying you’d prefer a casual little get-together.

2: Don’t try to follow fashion. If you opt for something too on-trend now, it will look terribly dated later. Let’s just say that your dad probably thought those bell-bottom flares and two-tone platforms were incredibly hip on his big day – enough said?

3: Suit hire is always an option, but don’t forget that this is your big day too. Figures show your bride will probably have spent at least a month’s wage on her dress, so why shouldn’t you splash out on an outfit to remember as well?

4: Make sure the fabric you choose complements the overall wedding theme. In other words, don’t wear brown if the theme is blue.

5: Not to put too fine a point on it, nervous grooms can often glow like a lightbulb (sorry, but we are talking sweat here). Warm reception halls, making speeches and dancing with the mother-in-law all encourage a little overheating, so choose a medium weight suit in a quality fabric that won’t leave you smelling like an over-ripe cheese.

6: Simple style never goes out of fashion. This means a timeless two-piece with a single breasted jacket, slightly slanted pockets, side vents, two front buttons (don’t fasten the bottom one), four-button cuffs and a button hole in the lapel for a rose will always be a winner.

7: A bespoke suit speaks volumes. It says you’ve made just as much effort as your beautiful bride (although you’ll probably still have enough money for the bus fare home, while she’ll be thumbing it in her �1,400 crystal-encrusted Louboutin Araneas).

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