Wedding suits are definitely the more elegant and beautiful garment in men’s formal wear that one man can wear. But, when did its origins date back to?
The first news we have about formal suits derive from France, during the reign of Louis XIV at Versailles. He had imposed a dress code that every man had to respect in the court: a coat or a jacket, a waistcoat, pants that came up to the knee, a handkerchief and a wig. This was definitely a overly flashy look, but it was the founder of the whole men’s formal wear.
After France it was the turn of England and the reign of Charles II: he took the cue from the etiquette set by Louis XIV and proposed a new version of it, more modern and more suited to the so sober English spirit.
This type of suit was originally called “Suit for hall” and they had no case to which occasions were they were wearing it: the suit was fine both for ceremonies in the Church and the countryside or the beach. Between the nineteenth and twentieth century, the Suit for hall has spread more and more, sometimes even in place of the wedding suits, until get to the point where anyone could had at least one at home to wear it on Sunday in the Church.
In that period the suit for hall, which actually consisted of a simple formal dress used in conjunction with the waistcoat and this habit continued until the Second World War. Unfortunately, the less affluent classes did not have the opportunity to buy more suits for a single person, then the wedding suit consisted in the usual daily suit described above.
The trend of that moment was the double-breasted jacket, and the only way to distinguish a “wedding suit” from a “suit for hall” was the presence or absence of accessories: vest, shirt with double cuff, cufflinks and cravat (accessory par excellence of the ceremony of that time).
Nowadays, fortunately, people who can not afford two different suits in their closet are much less numerous and, therefore, more and more people have purchased two different suits: one for everyday use and one for the ceremony (better if between the two one is single-breasted and the other one is double-breasted).
Usually, the wedding suit of a man is composed of several pieces, some of which are essential, while others are to be regarded as mere accessories, and therefore optional. The pieces that make up a wedding suit are:
–Jacket: long or short; with 1 or 2 buttons; in black, gray, blue, white or ivory;
–Trousers: the same fabric and color of the jacket or in contrast;
– Accessory for the neck: tie, cravat, ascot, foulard, bowtie, etc.;
– Shoes: usually black but are allowed in other colors, to be combined with belt;
– Other accessories: cufflinks, pin, handkerchief and pocket watch;
As regards the colors, it is possible to exploit the blue at any time of the day; black is definitely a symbol of elegance but it would be more suitable for evening ceremonies, as well as the dark gray; light gray, however, is suitable for ceremonies in the morning. Each color needs the best combinations, colors that stand out if matched each other.
All these suits can be 2 or 3 pieces: if they were 3 pieces, the vest would donate that extra touch of elegance that each groom should have; In addition, who wear the vest will not be cold during the winter weddings and can hide a little belly.
Wedding suits: how to wear them?
Every man should always follow his own personality, even and especially on the day of his wedding. However, there being walked through the field of “formality”, there are some rules or small details from which no one is able to leave them out of consideration. Each “piece” of the suit has its own rules, and below we will analyze the jacket, the trousers and the waistcoat.
Jacket: can be short (not longer than the thumb of the hand when you are standing with the arms stretched out to the sides), frock coat (not longer than the whole hand) or tailcoat and morning suits (knee-length jackets). All the fit must be perfect, from the neck to the shoulder to the length of the sleeve: there should be no wrinkles or bumps. The lapels should be well ironed because they might not appear raised and behind the jacket usually there is only one central opening and a single button on the front.
Trousers: they must neither be too tight nor too loose, because in each of these two cases would be uncomfortable. The hem of the pants must come to touch the shoe, even better if it comes up to the heel. They can be worn with a belt or with suspenders.
Waistcoat: is the accessory par excellence for wedding suits; it can be smooth, asymmetric or double-breasted. If it is smooth the last button should never be buttoned up, while in the other two models of waistcoat buttons must be all buttoned. Can be enriched with a chain of crystals that reminds to the old pocket watches.
The collections of 2015 by Mario Moreno Moyano, creative soul of Ottavio Nuccio Gala, offering customers a wide range of different suits, some of them very modern, others very classic. The rules that apply on formal wear of a man since the fourteenth century should not be lost, and the company Ottavio Nuccio Gala makes treasure of every tradition.