When you say the words ‘Wedding Season’, what image comes to mind?
A sun-bleached Santorini rooftop, white linen flapping lazily in the Grecian breeze? Blanket-clad hay bales lining a woodland aisle, treetop canopy dappling your guests with that elusive British sunshine?
Though the British wedding season officially runs from May to October, I think it’s probably fair to say that the most popular months are those where the weather is least inclement. Wedding venues have obviously capitalised on this window of opportunity, raising those in-season prices to sometimes dizzying heights.
And it’s those prices that are encouraging some couples to consider tying the knot later on in the year. From the groom’s perspective, the cooler weather opens up so many doors in relation to wedding tailoring.
From a tailors perspective? Well, we’re happy to help whichever season it might be.
So why does a Winter wedding get us all hot under the collar?
Don’t misunderstand me, a midsummer wedding can be pretty hard to beat. The atmosphere alone, coupled with balmy temperatures, high spirits and lots of Pimms… However, Summer suiting by its nature has to be less structured, lighter and cooler than tailoring for chilly winter.
With a Winter or even an Autumn wedding, your suit takes on a different role to its lighter-weight cousin. Generally, winter suit jackets are made from more structured fabric and fully lined. This will give a sharper, stronger silhouette.
After all, there’s nothing worse than shivering your way through the I do’s in a draughty church. Embrace the insulation and make it your own with a contrast silk lining that really stands out. This is your opportunity to really indulge in some luxurious fabrics, like super 110s Merino wool, herringbone tweed or even a wide corduroy – for the bold among us.
Things to consider when planning your suit
Pattern. Texture. Details; The holy trinity.
You wouldn’t necessarily go with a bold checked fabric if this suit was intended for liaising with clients through the working week. But as your wedding day is a one-off, we reckon the suit for your big day should be a one-off too. We’re seeing more men embracing this ethos and frankly, we love it. But obviously, within reason.
When I say pattern, I don’t mean anything gaudy, extravagantly loud or offensive. But there is definitely room to bring a touch of heritage style to a contemporary cut or inject a little personality into a classic cut. Try a charcoal windowpane check, with a subtle contrast of lighter grey.
Mastering the use of texture is also a subtle art.
Textured linen, perfect in summer months is far too light for Winter. Heavier, densely woven fabrics provide far more scope for experimenting with texture. An autumnal wedding will often have a rustic vibe, and textured yarns have a rich, raw quality that embodies this perfectly.
Think Tweeds, Flannels, Corduroy, Herringbone and perhaps, even Houndstooth or Windowpane Check.
Last, but certainly not least – remember the little details. This might mean complimenting or contrasting with accessories. It could mean knowing when to tone it down so that your suit does the talking, but one things for sure – details complete the picture.
If you’ve got a heavily textured or patterned suit, your shirt, shoes and accessories need to be minimalistic. Match colours to the theme of your wedding, or at least choose colours that compliment your suit, so that the accessories blend in.
In contrast, if your suit is cut from quieter cloth, you can turn up the volume on the details.
Contrast with a waistcoat in a complementary shade or design, match pocket squares to button holes and inject some texture with your neck wear.
I love weddings. Spring, Summer, Autumn or Winter – they all have their own quirks and different perks. But when it comes down to gentlemen’s tailoring, the number of possibilities to customise and express yourself for a winter wedding, are endless.