Grooms Step Up

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Grooms are more imaginative than ever before

By Elle A. Grant | Newport Wedding Magazine 2020

Sean Thompson looks dapper in royal blue Tommy Hilfiger from Men’s Wearhouse. [Tiffany Axtmann Photography]

When it comes to a couple’s big day, grooms arguably get the short end of the sartorial stick. Yet grooms in Rhode Island are routinely proving that on their wedding day, they can look sharp, cool and collected. 

Thanks to the internet, today’s grooms are exposed to a plethora of inspiration, from traditional to crazily colorful — and anything in-between. Roger Gross of men’s formalwear retailer Franklin Rogers Ltd. has noticed that “explosion of creativity,” receiving orders for suits in every color under the sun, including blue, green and burgundy. He even gets requests for velvet ones and traditional Scottish kilts. Gross recognizes that while that isn’t for everyone, grooms are more imaginative than ever before — and he doesn’t see that changing anytime soon. 

Gross notes that a few key trends are coming this year, most notably the ascension of the blue suit. Many grooms are abandoning black in favor of navy or royal blue. This often stems from a desire for a lighter-colored suit for a spring or summer wedding. Grooms are also enjoying the benefits that customization offers: very slim styles fitted to the body, and a soft shoulder with little padding — a look that James Bond himself would wear with pride. 

Even grooms opting for a more conventional route are making tweaks to stand out. Kenny Teng of Marc Allen Fine Clothiers notes that more often, men are interested in the little customizations possible to make a classic suit feel fresh. For instance, wider lapels are making their way from Italy to New England, while traditional cuff links are giving way to smaller or concealed ones that lend suits a cleaner finish. 

Though beautiful year-round, Newport is an especially attractive wedding destination in the warmer months. To keep from sweating through the ceremony, opt for a half-lined or unlined jacket. Wool and mohair blends offer both a subtle sheen and the coolness of linen — without the wrinkling. 

Both retailers agree that tuxedos are less popular now. Teng notes that men “want a piece that is multipurpose,” that can go from their wedding day to a day at the office. Suspenders are also passé, as are large cuff links and studs sets. Linen suits were collectively acknowledged as a bit of a wrinkly mess, and with the new alternatives mentioned above, no longer necessary.  

So the next time you’re at a wedding, don’t overlook the other person standing at the altar. And if you’re a groom, be yourself — and find the fit that is best for your day! 

Daniel Heaney sports a custom suit from Jos. A. Bank. [Snap! Weddings]

An iris bowtie accents Torrence Jennette’s gray suit from Franklin Rogers Ltd. [Lefebvre Photo]

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