Image via InStitchu
“You can choose your friends but you sho’ can’t choose your family.” – so the often quoted line from Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird goes.
If you’re in the midst of organising your wedding suit, that quote may be hitting a little too close to home right now.
I have to say, I was pretty lucky in this regard – my family is not overly traditional and certainly not overbearing, and the same goes for my wonderful wife, so when it came to choosing my wedding suit, I had free reign.
But not everyone is that lucky.
I’ve heard stories of mums not allowing particular colours to be worn by the groom, and dads refusing to pay for suits that did not conform to their vision of what was appropriate for a wedding.
Then there’s the awkward moment when the bride and groom don’t see eye to eye.
Image via InStitchu
When it comes to wedding fashion, Miles Ruge, weddings manager at Institchu – a global custom, tailoring menswear company, has seen his fair share of what we will call: ‘family interactions’.
Miles says having a professional assisting in the process can help mediate the tension.
“It’s about compromise, so often for example, when we see that it’s a groom’s first suit, we help him figure out what looks good, what they both like, and we are then able to educate both the groom and the bride to find the perfect suit to cover some of the bride’s desires and also ensure that the groom is feeling happy and confident in his choice.”
There are a few steps in this process, Miles says.
“First, we listen to what they are saying and help to find them something that meets their specific needs.
“Another essential step is ensuring they are comfortable and confident in their decision by providing them with a suit that they are delighted and excited to wear on their wedding day.
“Playing a part in guiding them in their decision-making is important, in which we place emphasis in showing them custom, tailored suits that we have created for past wedding parties, show them our current sample garments and ideas or we get them to find inspiration from Pinterest or photos and we can replicate the style whilst adding their own personal touches through our customisation options.”
But it’s not always easy.
Miles says he’s seen numerous occasions where everyone wasn’t quite on the same page.
“Often the groom will be at the mercy of the bride, where he may find he has to match what she is wearing, which may not be his first pick.
“We’ve had a groom come in with the vision of wearing a burgundy coloured suit to his wedding, when his bride insisted on having him wear cooler colours that matched her accessories.
“So we took him through the process of creating a custom, tailored suit that fit him well but was also made of his fabric of choice, but of a beautiful sky, blue colour.
“In the end, he was matching the bride, and also loved his new suit, which was a perfect fit for his outdoor beach wedding. Both the bride and the groom were happy in the end.
“Compromise is key!”
Image via InStitchu
Then there’s the parents…
“We’ve had groomsmen come in with an overbearing mother-in-law, and we’ve seen overbearing parents who do get caught up in the wedding excitement and can forget that the wedding day is not all about them,” Miles says.
“We try our best to be the go-between for the groom to achieve a look that everybody is happy with at the end of the day.
“That’s honestly the beauty of custom tailoring, where we can change any detail small or big to appease both parties.”
Miles left me with three tips to help you cut through the opinions and choose your ideal wedding suit.
And I’ll leave you with the rest of that Harper Lee quote from To Kill A Mocking Bird: “They’re still kin to you no matter whether you acknowledge ’em or not, and it makes you look right silly when you don’t.”
Three tips to help you cut through the opinions and find the perfect suit
From InStitchu’s Miles Ruge.
1. Explain what your vision for your wedding is in detail –– you never know, they may be sold right away.
2. Involve them in the process and provide them full transparency along the way.
3. At the end of the day, communication is key and it’s important to make sure that your family knows how important this day is to you and your bride. Communicating that you’ll be considering their feedback, however also that the final decision lies between the bride and the groom is essential in creating the wedding that matches all your plans and visions.
Ms Zigzag says: Our resident groom style master, Mr Houndstooth, has done it again. Thanks for sharing your advice on finding a suit that suits every groom!
About Mr Houndstooth: I am a happily married man. I enjoy a fine whisky, a new suit and swashbuckling around town with my beautiful bride. Looking back on my wedding day always makes me smile, even though it began to rain just as I said ‘I do’.