How to select a wedding tuxedo or a suit

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OK, guys, listen up. There are a lot of articles here on for brides - this one is for you. While it may be interesting for the brides who tend to "advise" their husbands-to-be, I hope it's you who can really pick up some ideas here.

First, what constitutes a tuxedo? When you are selecting a tuxedo for the wedding, the tuxedo will include two parts: (1) a black jacket with satin or grosgrain lapels, and (2) trousers that usually have a silken stripe along the sides. They are, as you would expect, most often - but not always - sold in pairs to match.

Optimize your wedding tux search

Let's chat about selecting the tux the wrong way. Let's call it "how to waste a lot of time." Most grooms did it - went around looking for wedding tuxedos in the standard "tux rental shops" just to find that those options are either used, limited in options or offer "standard sizes" that totally don't fit. If you still want to try this option, instead of Googling for "tux shop near [city], [state]," go to a large premium mall nearby. In the Greater Seattle area, an example would be Bellevue Square mall. Walk around and see if you see anything interesting in the stores - not those large chain stores like JC Penny, but the small ones.

Now let's pick out something that fits perfectly. When you show photos of your wedding to your grandchildren many years from now, you'd know you had the tux that sat perfectly on you - and that'd be visible on the photos.

Find a tux shop

So how do you find a place that is not the kind of the "standard tux rental shop," which carries a limited selection of complete tux/suit sets? Look for a larger shop with a few more (dozens of) options.

In general, pick a shop with a professional tailor on staff. To test if the shop is good for what you need is to pop in at 5:30 PM on a workday and see if the tailor is present there at that time. A decent shop won't go without a tailor being present at all times.

Tailors will not only make something fit you if you really like it, but they will teach you many tricks and explain many different things.

Save time searching for a wedding tuxedo

In our experience, you usually have two main options.

  • Option 1, typical: Men's Wearhouse or similar.

    This is where most men end up buying their tux or a suit for the wedding. The prices are affordable - a good suit might cost you around $300, and it will look great! Bring a buddy and save - most of the Men's Wearhouse stores have promotions on their site, and the one you need is "buy one set, get another one for $100." Suit up your groomsmen and save a bunch of money.

    I, of course, do not expect that you'll start looking at the suits until the last moment before the wedding, but if you can find time, start looking early - such companies' websites do have a bunch of rotating deals, so allow yourself plenty of time to snatch the best of the deals.

  • Option 2, premium: Nordstrom has what you need.

    Pick a friend, grab a camera with soft flash, and head to the store. Helpful sales associates and generous policies will ensure you have what you need. You get premium service, but be prepared to spend a thousand dollars or more on your outfit. Maybe it's worth it. After all, your fiancé is spending a ton of money on her dress, right? :)

When you're selecting a tuxedo, make two-three trips, and always bring a friend, for example, your best man, to the fitting session. Have the friend take plenty of photos of you in different suits and tuxedos. Go home and look through these options before you make a decision. You will often see things that you might not see in the fitting rooms - like whether the length looks right from afar, whether you'll realistically be able to sit down comfortably, etc.

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