Life Skills

The New Rules Of Men’s Summer Wedding Attire (2024)

  • Jun 23, 2024
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The New Rules Of Men’s Summer Wedding Attire (2024)

Summer dressing gets a bad rap. Detractors argue that warm weather presents fewer wardrobe options. They say this can make putting outfits together difficult compared to fall, spring and winter when there’s scope for layering up and wearing lots of different textures. But we think dressing for warm weather can still present some exciting outfit options, particularly when it comes to weddings.

A summer wedding is a playground where you can get creative with colour, pattern and lightweight fabrics. Dress codes are generally slightly more relaxed than they might otherwise be, and forgoing a traditional full suit is far less likely to raise eyebrows. All of that said, this increased freedom does up your chances of making some sort of sartorial misstep, and it can, therefore, make putting your outfit together a little bit more confusing.

To help guide you, we’ve pulled together a list of summer wedding dos and don’ts that you can follow to keep you on the right track. Stick to these simple rules and you should strike the right balance every time, creating outfits that are fun and contemporary while still dressy enough not to ruffle any feathers.

Do Wear Breathable Materials

Depending on where the wedding is, it could be an uncomfortably hot day to spend in a traditional wool suit. One way around this is to dabble in lighter, more breathable fabrics instead. For high summer, anything airy and quick-drying is going to be a good option, particularly materials like linen, seersucker, silk and rayon.

If you are dead set on wearing a suit, a linen one in a light colour is a good option. A single-breasted jacket with matching trousers in beige linen, for example, will work nicely with a pale blue linen shirt. It’s smart yet relaxed, and the breathability will help you stay comfortable even in the midday heat.

Don’t Stray From The Dress Code

It’s true that summer weddings often offer greater sartorial freedom than their cold-weather counterparts, but that doesn’t give you carte blanche to deviate from the stated dress code.

As a mark of respect to your hosts, you should always adhere religiously to whatever it says on the invitation… even if it does mean wearing a full tuxedo in the middle of August. After all, it’s their wedding, and if you feel that strongly about it you can always make your excuses and politely decline the invitation.

Do Be More Adventurous With Your Colour Palette

The temptation with weddings is often to play it safe and stick to the tried-and-tested staples, like navy and grey suits and black shoes. Sure, you might add a dash of colour in the form of a tie or pocket square, but it’s generally a pretty bland affair. This is where summer weddings are different.

This is your chance to show some personality. You could keep it low-key with some nice pastel tones in your suit or shirt, or you could go the whole hog and swap the dress shirt for a patterned camp-collar short sleeve to give your outfit a real focal point.

Don’t Get Carried Away With Prints And Patterns

This brings us to our next point. Yes, patterns are great, but they’re best used in moderation. Don’t get carried away with anything overly wacky, and try to limit yourself to one patterned piece per outfit.

If you’re struggling for inspiration, a few patterns that tend to work well in smarter settings include stripes, dark florals, geometrics and abstract two-tone prints. Whichever you choose, keep the palette relatively subdued, avoiding anything too bright or potentially headache-inducing.

Do Swap The Dress Shoes For Something More Summery

Sure, you could wear plain old black Derby shoes to a summer wedding, but why not seize the opportunity to branch out and wear something a little less formal? We’d suggest a nice suede loafer or driving shoe worn sockless.

Just make sure the colour works with whatever you’re wearing from the ankles up, and if in doubt, consult our handy colour-matching guide.

Don’t Steal The Limelight

Charles Tyrwhitt

When everyone’s clad in suits it levels the playing field somewhat. But when there’s more freedom to do your own thing, it’s too easy to get carried away peacocking.

If you want to wear a flamboyant patterned shirt or a suit in an unconventional colour, that’s great. But make sure your overall outfit isn’t too ‘ooh, look at me’, or you risk stealing the focus.

Remember, as fun as it is to get dressed up in fancy summer wedding regalia, ultimately, the day is about whoever is tying the knot, not your diamante-encrusted velour blazer and gold cowboy boots.

Do Explore More Seasonally Appropriate Shirting Options

There’s nothing wrong with a white poplin dress shirt. We’d go as far as to call it a menswear essential. However, chances are the dress code gives you some leeway to pick something a little more summery, so we’d advise taking full advantage of that.

A printed camp-collar shirt often looks great under a tailored jacket, as does a knitted polo. You could even ditch the jacket altogether and use the shirt as the focal point of your outfit.

If you decide to go down this route, you should look for an elevated spin on a summer classic, like a silk camp collar or a cashmere polo.

Don’t Go Too Casual


While it’s true that summer-wedding dress codes tend to be more relaxed, it’s still best to err on the side of formal if there is any doubt.

It’s always better to be overdressed than underdressed at a wedding, so leave the jeans and sportswear at home and only consider sneakers if they’re smart and the dress code leaves no grey areas about it.

Do Get Acquainted With Your Local Tailor

This is just generally good advice, but it goes double for weddings or any other occasion where tailoring is involved. You can have the best suit in the world, but if it’s hanging off you like a child in fancy dress then it’s never going to look good.

If you’ve bought a suit off the peg, take it to your nearest tailor, preferably one that comes recommended, and let them work their magic. They can do things like taper trouser legs, shorten arms and adjust the fit in the torso to make any suit fit you like a glove.

It’s well worth doing, and you’ll feel more confident for it.

Disclaimer: This story is auto-aggregated by a computer program and has not been created or edited by menshealthfits.
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