DECODING WEDDING INVITES

Dressing for a wedding can be something of a sartorial minefield. But fear not, we've taken matters into our own hands, decoding tricky wedding invites to bring you the best men's wedding guest outfits for every type of occassion.

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Country wedding


Country wedding = Traditional heritage


Invite says: Barn, village church, manor house, marquee

What to wear: A country wedding calls for the most traditional dress. Think three-piece suits in heritage tweeds or checks. You want to go for softly, softly colours – greys, camels, nudes and pale blue – to fit into your surroundings. If the invite’s looking really rustic, go for a dressed-down version. A pastel coloured shirt and tie with braces can look both simultaneously vintage and modern. Keep shoes brown and swap any flashy cufflinks for a heritage-inspired watch.

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City wedding


City wedding = Sharp and modern


Invite says: Hotel, town hall, gallery, city park

What to wear: A city wedding is the chance to go all-out and make a statement. Channel a bold hue – burnt red or bright blue – or an understated tone – sophisticated grey or black. Do away with the waistcoat and go for a simple tie and jacket combo. A black tie with a black shirt can look very Hollywood. Alternatively, a fine knit, layered over a shirt with a dark jacket, or a simple crew neck tee under a jacket are ideal if you’re less comfy in a full-on suit.

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Beach wedding


Beach wedding = Crisp and relaxed


Invite says: English seaside or abroad

What to wear: If the invite’s whimsical and beach-y, you know you can go for a more relaxed dress code. The white shirt is your hero piece for this look. Choose a slim fit, go tieless and roll the sleeves up. Tuck into neutral chinos, grey suit trousers or pair with dark tailored shorts. If you feel like you need a blazer, think about a linen variety in chalky grey or muted blue. Go for loafers (sockless) or plimsolls but avoid sandals – you may be at the beach but closed toe says a much more sophisticated look.

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Dress code 101


Dress code 101


If you find yourself with a dress code on the invite, here’s the lowdown on exactly what they mean…
White tie: The most formal of all the dress codes. Don tails, a white waistcoat and a bow tie.
Black tie: This calls for a tux.
Black tie optional: A tuxedo or a dark suit is equally fine.
Morning suit: This calls for a morning coat, a waistcoat, striped trousers and a top hat if you’re feeling really fancy.
Lounge suit: This may sound complicated but is simply a suit.
Cocktail attire: Think a dark suit and tie in black or grey.
Semi-casual or semi-formal: Wear a suit and tie. Go for lighter hues if it's more of a daytime event and darker if it's an evening do.
Casual: Jeans would be too casual. A shirt and trousers are perfect here.