Weddings are some of the most important events in life. So, it's no surprise that many of them have strict dress codes. Whether you attend a semi-formal, formal, or black-tie wedding event, odds are one rule will be universal: no white unless you're the bride.
Indeed, it’s generally bad form for men to wear white to a wedding, even if it’s the best color. Let’s take a closer look at this rule and explore some alternative wedding apparel options for men.
White and Weddings – Key Rules for Both Genders
No matter whether you’re a man or a woman, there’s a fashion rule that’s the same for both. You can’t wear white, period.
Why? White is traditionally a color reserved for the bride's dress. The vast majority of brides, even today, wear white to their weddings. This trend started in the time of Queen Vitoria, when that British Queen wore white to her own wedding to showcase her purity. Ever since, white has been a very popular color for wedding dresses around the world.
Therefore, even if you look great in a white suit or tuxedo, do yourself and the bride a favor and don’t show up in clothing of that color. There’s one exception to this rule: if the bride is wearing a dress of a different color, like red (a popular shade in Asia). If you’re unsure, call ahead and figure out what color the bride is wearing so you can plan your wedding wardrobe appropriately.
What Can Men Wear Instead of White?
If the bride is wearing white, so it’s off-limits for you, don’t feel too bad; there are still plenty of things you can wear to a wedding that will make you look great.
Dark Suits and Tuxes
Dark suits and tuxedos are classic choices, and for good reason. Men look sharp, put together, masculine, and mature when they wear these types of clothing. Well-tailored dark suit jackets, collared shirts, and tuxedos will make you stand out, even if every other man at the wedding is also wearing a tuxedo or dark suit.
Don't forget to wear a necktie with your tuxedo or suit. In fact, if it's a black-tie wedding, you'll be required to wear a bowtie no matter what. Pair the ensemble with good dress shoes, and you'll be good to go.
As you put together your suit, pick a jacket and trousers in complementary or identical colors. For example, if you wear a medium gray jacket, you’ll also want high-quality gray trousers, like these Super 100s Gabardine Flat Front Pants.
Collared Dress Shirts and Slacks
If you don't want to go full-on tuxedo-style, you can still look great at an upcoming wedding by wearing a collared dress shirt and slacks. Choose a dress shirt in white, navy, or gray, then choose complementary slacks to match. Partner those up with some dress shoes, a good watch, and a good leather belt. All in all, this is a fantastic staple outfit choice if you aren't sure what to wear or are trying to find something suitable quickly.
You can pair the right collared dress shirt with tailored dress slacks, like these Super 130’s Tasmanian Gabardine Flat Front Pants. Or, if the wedding takes place in a slightly chillier location, you can keep your legs warm with these Polyester Wool Tropical Self-Sizer Pleated Pants.
Wedding Apparel Accessories
The accessories you choose to wear to a wedding can impact your outfit just as much as the clothing’s colors or primary pieces.
For example, you can wear a lapel to a wedding. In fact, this is much better compared to a boutonniere, which could make it seem like you are trying to outshine the groom. You can also wear your best watch, particularly one with a metal band and a face with small gemstones.
Alternatively, wear a colored tie with your favorite suit jacket and slacks. In many cases, you can wear wedding accessories to make yourself stand out from the crowd if you aren’t able to wear white or other articles depending on the fashion of the bride and groom.
All in all, while you can’t wear white to a wedding as a man, there are lots of other things you can wear to look great and stay within the dress code. Even better, you don’t need to look far for the perfect trousers – just check out Berle’s selection of tailored dress pants today!