Men's Wear: Rent a Tux or Buy a Suit?
By: DJ Mark Moore
The difference between tuxedos and suits in all in the details. Typically the lapels, buttons, and pocket trim on tuxedos have satin facing and also have a satin stripe down the legs of the pants. Tuxedos are for formal events. Weddings, School dances, galas, ect. Dress etiquette says that tuxedos are only worn at night. Tuxedos are most commonly accessorized with bow ties, vests or cummerbunds, and black shoes & a black belt.
Suits, on the other hand, are made from the same type of fabric (no satin details). Suits are less formal than their tuxedo counterparts but still can still look sharp on your wedding day. Suits are most often accessorized with long ties and can be worn with black or brown shoes. That's not to say you can't wear a bow tie and vest with a suit or can't wear a long tie with a tuxedo.
What you wear to your wedding should be based on a few things - how formal that bride's dress is, how formal the reception is, and your personal style. There are many style choices you can make but keep in mind the ultimate goal is for the groom to be the best dressed man in the room.
Renting A Tux:
Renting a tuxedo is going to cost anywhere from $150 - $300+. The bride and groom select the tuxedo style and accessories for the groom, the groomsmen, and any close family that are part of the celebration (parents, grandparents, and any ushers or ring bearers you might have). The groomsmen are then tasked with getting measured, paying for, picking up and returning their clothing rentals. These tuxedos tend to always run a little baggy (they're tailored to "fit" as many men as possible) and since the tuxedos are worn by many men sometimes the rental you receive might be a little worn in. The chain rental stores can be a blessing for couples that want a one stop. It's always easier to let someone else coordinate the men's clothes than to choose multiple items from multiple retailers and get your groomsmen in line without some encouragement.
Buying a Suit:
As a wedding DJ I've seen it all when it comes to men's wear - and more and more grooms these days are opting to buy their suits rather than rent tuxedos. Classic colors like gray, blue, and black make the best choices. Use white shirts (most groomsmen already have a white button up), matching ties, and shoes to pull off the outfit. Look for suit separates - they ensure that everyone has both a jacket and pair of pants that fit them well. After you select a style send that information to all of the groomsmen - you'll want to make sure everyone buys the same jacket and pants in a timely manner in case a store runs out of stock - This might take some encouragement from the groom. After you add in shoes, belts, shirts and ties - buying a suit can cost $250 to $500+ depending on the brands you buy in store. It's a little bit more expensive but it's something you can wear more than once. Every man needs at least one good suit in his closet.
Buying a Suit or Tux Online:
Another option for purchasing your wedding wear is buying online. One of my recent grooms, Chris, could not stop raving about his experience with www.combatgent.com - They stock both tuxedos and suits and are as equally affordable as renting from the big box stores (around $200). If you plan to purchase online make sure to do it early (combatgent requires at least four months notice) and make sure everything fits. Chris said one of his groomsmen's jackets didn't fit right at first but raved about their customer service - sending them multiple options to make sure they got exactly what they needed. This isn't a paid endorsement. I'm just passing along the positive experience Chris and his friends had buying their suits online. If you do buy from an online retailer read the reviews & buy early and you should be able to save money while still looking great at your wedding. After hearing his story I plan to buy my next suit from this company. I really like the navy blue slim fit .
DJ Mark Moore is a DJ from the Cincinnati, Ohio area. Check out his facebook page here .