Wedding planning definitely has a reputation for being overwhelming. Most to-do lists are generic and either too specific or not specific enough. They mention “order groomswear” or “ask groomsmen to order attire” as one finite item on the list without accounting for all of the other parts that go into it.
Here, we’ve outlined the relevant decisions for wedding ties and attire that need to be made, and the best timeline for doing so.
First things first: set timing, budget and formality. Although these items are first on the to-do list, you’ll want to hold off on making any final attire decisions until you have decided on these factors. This goes for the bride’s dress shopping as well. You wouldn’t want to order a tuxedo (or ballgown) then opt for a casual beach celebration. First decide on the following:
What time of year will the wedding be?
Summer weddings usually have a more casual airy feel and could be a good option for a khaki or light grey suit with sorbet colored ties and pocket squares. A winter wedding, conversely, would be a great occasion for a dark suit and more formal accessories, like a stately stripe or tartan versus a floral pattern.
What time of day will the wedding be?
The time of day will dictate the level of formality with evening ceremonies traditionally being more formal than morning or afternoon ones.
What is the overall formality of the wedding (this will likely be related to the budget)?
The formality of the wedding will help you make decisions about attire as well. A multi-course sit down dinner calls for more formal attire than a casual buffet or outdoor BBQ. If you’re on the fence about whether groomsmen ties are too formal for your wedding, consider that a custom Knotty Tie pattern nodding to the wedding theme in fun way or simply offering a pop of color can create a relaxed yet polished look for everyone.
Next, select the wedding attire. Once you’ve settled on the above factors, you are now ready to select the attire for the groom and groomsmen. We recommend answering the following apparel questions at this point in planning.
Will the groom and groomsmen be wearing suits or tuxedos?
Or maybe just slacks and shirts with a vest or suspenders? What color suit? Typically the more formal the wedding, the darker the suit and some of the most formal dress codes request a black tie specifically. But feel free to still have some fun!
Will the groom wear the same attire as the groomsmen or will he wear something different?
He could wear a darker or lighter suit than the groomsmen or a “tell-tale” tie, where he dons the opposite tie from the rest of the men. You may also want to consider the best man wearing something different than the rest of the bridal party as well.
What accessories will the groom and groomsmen wear?
This could include ties or bow ties, a pocket square, suspenders, shoes, socks, and a belt. As for neckwear, tuxedos are traditionally worn with a bow tie and suits play well with really any form of neckwear.
Do you want to set the groom's look apart?
When styling the groom and groomsmen there are many options to create a look that helps the groom stand out. A “tell-tale” tie can be simply a contrasting or lighter color than the bridal party or even putting the groom in a bow tie and the groomsmen in neckties. (Or vice-versa) Adding a matching or contrasting pocket square can help the groom stand out as well!
What will groomsmen need to order versus wearing what they already own? Will they be renting or purchasing the attire?
This will come down to the preferences of the bride and groom about how uniform everything should look. If the men will be wearing white shirts and black shoes, for example, is it okay if they wear their own, or should they order these together so that it looks completely uniform?
Always clarify who will pay for what. It is customary for bridesmaids and groomsmen to pay for their own attire of course, but you may want to purchase some of the accessories as gifts for your guests of honor. For example, it could be the custom designed ties and/or pocket squares that everyone will be wearing to complete their look. Whether being purchased as a gift or expected to be purchased by the attendant, outline these arrangements upfront so that expectations are aligned and your bridal party can anticipate the cost.
Personalized ties make for the perfect thank you gift to the groomsmen to wear for years to come, but also add some personality and incorporate the overall design of the wedding into the men’s attire for the day. Knotty Tie suggests that you start designing your wedding ties at this early stage in your planning but if you do happen to forget about neckwear until the last minute (it happens) they can always accommodate expedited timelines!
Finally, order the groom's and groomsmen attire and accessories. It is recommended that the groom’s and groomsmen attire is ordered at least three months prior to the wedding, however the timeline may vary depending on whether you plan to rent or purchase a suit or tuxedo. Generally, the sooner the better!
Ask your groomsmen to order their attire, including the renting or purchasing of their suit or tux, and purchasing of any accessories they are responsible for. It is best to give them as much notice as possible to accommodate everyone’s schedules. Be sure that everyone knows exactly where to order and exactly which specific items to order - Knotty Tie makes this easy by combining your entire custom order into just one. This is most crucial to bridal parties who may all be located in different places geographically!
When finalizing your custom ties you may want to consider the specific sizing needs of your groomsmen. When it comes to the width of your neckties, super traditional weddings or older grooms and groomsmen often go with the widest width which Knotty Tie calls their “classic width”. The trendy groom with a hip boho wedding may choose a “skinny width” tie however. Here's a comparison of the widths:
To determine the length sizing it’s best to have a cushion of time before ordering to reach out to each guy about his height or neck width allowing for any delays. And just in case, Knotty Tie is used to working with clients who have very important deadlines such as weddings.
Their standard turnaround for custom order is 30 days, but they do offer several expedited shipping options with guaranteed delivery in 20, 15, 12, and 7 days for those “uh-oh” last minute moments.
Confirm the groomsmen order. We highly recommend you confirm with groomsmen that they have placed their orders for their attire. Some of them may require a few (dozen) gentle reminders; and we are speaking from experience. But don’t worry, we're sure their toasts will be great!
This is a guest blog post by Everly, a Seattle-based online wedding planning service.
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Take advantage of this gift guide to find the perfect collection or unique design for that daily or occasional tie wearer on your list. All the patterns featured below, and in any of our collections, are available as neckties, bow ties, and pocket squares.
We’re elevating the Knotty Tie design experience and are thrilled to announce a huge step toward the main goal for our customers since day one - letting you create the exact custom ties you want. Now you can design your own neckties, bow ties, and pocket squares in the perfect colors live!
We know that matching colors from one thing to another can be daunting, but when it comes to your custom neckties, bow ties, pocket squares, and scarves we’ve got your back. Our expert design team has put together some of our best color matching Do’s and Don’ts to help your wedding ties turn out perfect.
|2.25" wide||2.75" wide||3.5" wide|
|58" long||62" long||66" long|
|Ages 10+||Age 2 and under||Ages 2-6||Ages 6-10|
Adjustable for necks 14-18"
Adjustable velcro closure