The Wedding Party Attire

by Anna Jones

Photo courtesy Izzy Hudgins

The Details

You’re engaged! You’re thrilled. You’re in love. You’re ... overwhelmed. Whether you’ve dreamed of the big day your whole life or never thought about it until the moment you said yes, the actual process of planning your wedding is uncharted territory. Let this guide be your road map — and leave the details to us.

BRIDESMAID COUTURE

Moving past the era of identical bridesmaid dresses, where each attendant was a clone of the next, brides’ tastes are now trending toward individuality.

“Not everyone’s body type is the same, so it’s great that brides are letting their bridesmaids pick their own dresses — not just in terms of size but in style and shape too,” says Katherine Josephson, owner of Bella Bridesmaids, a new shop opening in Savannah in late September 2018. “Brides are even choosing patterns and florals in their bridesmaids’ dresses, which makes for great photographs, too.”

Another approach is for brides to select one color family and allow their bridesmaids to choose different shades and dress styles. According to Christina Vicaro, owner of Lowcountry Bride & Gown in Bluffton, the resulting ombré effect adds depth and interest to the bridal party. Vicaro says that because so many brides are choosing to get married in the fall for the cooler weather, she sees a lot of wine, mahogany and burgundy colored dresses that coalesce with the season. Navy and dusty blue are year-round favorites, and both are appropriate for both formal and more casual weddings. Vicaro recommends ordering the bridesmaid dresses as early as possible so that if any problems arise, there is plenty of time to either send back a dress or take it to a seamstress for alterations.

Appropriate measurements are key for the perfect fit, too, according to Josephson, who advises that bridesmaids should visit a Bella Bridesmaids store or any reputable seamstress in their area for accurate measurements. Whichever route you choose, it’s nice to keep in mind what will make your friends feel the most comfortable as they stand next to you at the altar — it’s your day, but you want your best girls to enjoy it, too.

Courtesy Izzy Hudgins Photography

GROOMSMEN GARB

Trends come and go, but there’s always something to be said for a dapper Southern gent dressed in a perfectly tailored tuxedo. This timeless style is particularly ideal for Southern weddings, where black-tie receptions remain popular affairs. Mark Lanier of John B. Rourke Gentlemen’s Clothiers in Savannah says today’s trends call for a trimmer fit. According to Lanier, a tux that’s slim through the leg and body with smaller armholes creates a more flattering silhouette for most figures. For distinguished depth, many men are donning navy tuxes. A shade Lanier calls “Marine Corps blue” is a particularly popular color choice for fashion-forward grooms. The trend lends a distinguished depth to the typical tux.

Dale Parker of Savannah menswear authority J Parker Ltd. stays true to tradition. “We mostly recommend staying classic,” she says. “You’re always safe with a black tuxedo and a formal shirt for a wedding.” But traditional doesn’t have to be boring — grooms and groomsmen show their personal style with custom pocket squares, bowties and even socks with patterns ranging from polka dots to Bloody Marys. Many wedding parties are opting for a formal black or navy suede slipper during the ceremony. For the more adventurous dresser, J Parker Ltd. carries Res Ipsa, a brand making slippers out of Turkish kilim rugs. This unexpected pairing with a classic tux offers a unique, distinctive touch for a groom and his party. And why not give guests a little something to talk about?