I wish I were better at planning for these kinds of things. I’ve had the invitation sitting on my desk for the past five months and a dream sartorial ensemble in my head for the same amount of time; it could’ve been perfect. Elephant Grey linen. Double breasted. Wide pleated trousers with an inch and three-quarter turn up, paired with black penny loafers to finish it all off. Maybe even a pair of chic fisherman sandals if I was feeling brave…
The Wedding Dilemma by André Larnyoh
Unfortunately, I didn’t place my Made-to-Measure order with the guys at Timothy Everest in time, so now, with only a few weeks to go, I turn to face the wedding season completely unprepared. *Cue brief panic*
There’s a small silver lining in the fact that the dress code on this particular invitation is….well, nonexistent. A relaxed affair is what the happy couple is asking for, so nothing too fancy or buttoned up. “Sunday Best” are the words they used when I checked a third time. Which doesn’t really make things that much easier because the hosts have, in essence, taken away a structure and given all of us guests way too much freedom. On the one hand, it’s just common sense to be incredibly presentable at any wedding function, but I guarantee there’s going to be someone who rocks up in a battered suit, bumbag, and Birkenstocks. There’s always one. As my Uncle always says, “common sense isn’t common to all.”
To top it all off, we’re currently going through one of the hottest summers I can remember. What a time to be alive! With all this, I’m left thinking of alternatives from the wedding norm of a dark grey/navy suit and tie that are appropriate for a blistering free-form high summer wedding. Tailoring is naturally de rigueur, but then the aim is to go for something that isn’t too stuffy to suit the vibes and so as not to wither away while the vows are spoken.
As much as I swear by linen, I can always look to seersucker to switch things up a bit – never a bad idea at this time of year. Problem is that I always think back to the old Southern Congressman in the States in poorly fitting white and blue striped numbers. The Timothy Everest black double breasted take on the seersucker suit helps to do away with this and would be perfect for this type of wedding; the simplicity of a dark suit combined with a casual and breathable material. With a crisp white shirt, we have an easy-going monochromatic look.
I’d even be tempted to push the boat out further with this one and go for a well-fitting white tee shirt. For a wedding that is eschewing tradition, I don’t see what the problem would be with making things a little more contemporary. Maybe tie a nice bandana or light summer scarf around the neck just to make it that little bit more special.
However, if the aim is to play it safe and a collar is simply a must, you wouldn’t be taking things too far by considering a long sleeved polo shirt. It would probably be out of the question for a serious affair, but for something like this, where the focus is on food, joy, and copious amounts of drink, I think the risk can be taken. Any tailoring can sharpen up an excellent polo to the point where hopefully, people will wonder why they didn’t think of that. Also when the jacket inevitably comes off, it’s a much more relaxed look than a sweat-stained dress shirt half tucked on the dance floor.
Words by André Larnyoh