A heavy, stuffy tuxedo isn't the only option for a summer wedding. Before you pull out the penguin suit, GQ magazine shares five alternative looks and helpful tips on how groomsmen can look cool, relaxed and comfortable at the ceremony:
Five classic looks
1. Khaki suit, white shirt, sage tieYou can never go wrong wearing a khaki cotton suit to a summer wedding, especially if the ceremony begins before sundown. A green, pearlescent tie subtly picks up on an East-meets-West theme without being too hokey (Mandarin collars will not be necessary, thank you very much).
2. Navy blazer, white shirt, colorful pocket square, seersucker trousersThere's nothing more traditional than a navy blazer, and yet this outfit is anything but traditional. First, we skipped the tie. Then, we opted for a tapered blazer with dark buttons, not brass buttons (leave those for the boys at the yacht club). The shot of attitude comes courtesy of the pocket square, which will pick up on the color of the bridesmaid dresses. Think of this ensemble as "hipster prep."
3. Navy suit, soft pink shirt, dark pink tie Yes, real men do wear pink, especially if they're in a garden-themed wedding. The reason this shirt works so well — and why guys look great in it — is because it's not an intense, high-watt pink, but an understated one. A solid tie in the same tone makes the outfit modern, sleek and sophisticated.
4. Ivory linen suit, pink shirtThis is a wedding, remember, not a board meeting. Let the guys have some fun. This is the most summery and relaxed (and the coolest!) of all four outfits. It wouldn't make sense for a formal, indoor wedding, but it does for this one. If the guys and groom are up for it, it could strike a one-of-a-kind note. And that's key: Too many weddings end up looking exactly the same; this would look completely different.
The right way to dress for a wedding
To tux or not to tuxLet's be clear about this: Tuxedos are eveningwear. So if you're getting married — or attending a wedding — in the afternoon, while the sun is still shining, a tuxedo is not appropriate — a suit is.
Time and place is everythingHaving a summer wedding? Dress for it. Consider a khaki suit (pair it with a white French-cuff shirt and black tie for a smart, elegant look). Or even try seersucker if that's your thing. But keep it simple — wear it with a white shirt and simple, dark tie (in navy blue perhaps).
The suit itself makes enough of a statement; the shirt and tie don't need to.
Go easy on your groomsmenHaving an outdoor summer wedding, while the sun is beating down? Please don't ask your groomsmen to wear dark, wool suits. They'll faint — literally. Lighter shades, and lightweight wools or cotton is what you should be after.
And, if your groomsmen are wearing the same type of suit, but not the exact same suit, a nice touch is for the groom to buy them wedding ties, so the ties themselves are at least identical. (Solid ties with a silvery tint are a nice option with a celebratory feel.)
What about shoes?
Simple, leather-soled black laceups (well polished, of course) are always a smart bet. Brown also works, but strikes a slightly less formal note. If you really want to get summery, try some white bucks.
But if you're getting married on a beach — as in standing in the sand during the ceremony — skip the dress shoes entirely. Go barefoot, or maybe wear flip-flops or sandals. Remember, you're on a beach, not in a church. Dress like it.
Grab some shadesYes, sunglasses are appropriate — necessary even — for an outdoor afternoon summer wedding. But wear the right kind of sunglasses.
Ditch the wraparound, athletic shades (leave those for A-Rod), and stick with the classics — wire-rimmed aviators or plastic Wayfarer-style sunglasses in black or tortoiseshell. You'll look cool and appropriate.
For more great style tips, visit GQ.com.