Suit and Tie or Tux and Bow Tie
The Difference Between Suits & Tuxes
At first glance, there isn’t a whole lot of difference between the physical appearance of a suit and a tux. The main difference comes down to the fabric — tuxes tend to have satin features (the buttons, the lapels, a stripe down the side of the pants, etc.) whereas suits do not. Additionally, other small features usually set the two looks apart. For example, tuxes are typically worn with bow-ties and a cummerbund or vest and the jacket might have a tail. Suits, on the other hand, usually have a standard jacket and are paired with a long tie. Depending on style preference, some grooms may also wear a vest that complements the wedding’s color palette.
Like we said, not a whole lot of difference, so there’s no reason to stress over these small tailoring details. Instead, it’s key for your hubby-to-be to focus on which style makes him feel comfortable, fits into the budget, and matches the formality of the wedding day.
There is no straight answer. It all depends on where you live, where you shop, the design and designer or the suit/tux, and whether or not your groom decides to rent or buy. To make his decision easier, we suggest you both do a little shopping around to compare prices (be sure to think about renting versus buying and the benefits of each!). During this shopping session, also be sure to schedule time for the groom to try on various styles at staggered price points. This will help your hubby-to-be determine which makes him feel his best and will give you both a clue about what you can truly afford to spend.
To give you a basic idea about what to expect, the following rules of thumb seem to be true most of the time:
It’s true that suits have lately become an acceptable attire pick for grooms, even if the wedding is formal. However, there are times when a tux is more appropriate than a suit and vice versa.
Suits come in all kinds of different styles and can usually be tailored to fit various levels of formality. However, the suit is often best when the event is slightly less formal or altogether informal. For example, if you’re having a barn wedding, a groom might look out of place in a tux with a tail. If the wedding is boho-chic and takes place in the middle of the afternoon in your backyard, a tux-clad groom would probably be uncomfortable. For scenarios like this, suits are the better choice. The same goes for weddings during the day: if you’re having a daytime soiree, it’s often less practical to don a tux, especially if you’re not trying to go for that black-tie look.
Just like suits, tuxes come in more varieties than you could ever begin to imagine. Despite this wide range, the tuxedo will always fall into the “more formal” category. For example, if you’re having a wedding at a ballroom, the groom can sometimes look a little out of place in a suit, even if it’s designed by an A-lister like Prada, and especially if the suit isn’t black. The same goes for a “no expenses spared” evening wedding. If the event is highly formal, then the groom’s attire should be, too.
The Bride’s Attire
The bride’s dress should be taken into consideration. If the bride is wearing a very formal gown, then the groom should probably opt for a tux. If the bride is wearing a simple, less-formal dress, then the groom can wear a suit and look just as dapper. When everything is said and done, you should complement each other!
- can be worn multiple times after the wedding day to all sorts of events.
- can be more personalized to fit the groom’s look.
- are available in many different colors and styles.
- are easily paired with details, such as handkerchiefs, buttons, shirts, etc.
- are usually more comfortable for the groom/groomsmen.
- great for slightly-less formal or informal weddings.
- are expensive to buy outright.
- light-colored suits aren’t as versatile (often cannot be worn in ritzy restaurants and for some occasions & seasons).
- look out of place at really formal weddings.
- great for formal, black-tie weddings.
- often look more polished and create more cohesion between groom/groomsmen.
- are the most popular choice for weddings.
- often pair better with the dressiness of the bride’s gown (obviously doesn’t apply if the bride is wearing a more informal dress).
- are available in many different styles.
- often cannot be worn very much after the wedding day (unless the groom attends many formal, black-tie events).
- are very expensive to buy outright.
- look really out of place at informal weddings/events.
- require a special type of dress shirt (typically white with black buttons).
- available in other colors, but black is most widely available.