Tweed Suits are becoming more and more popular
So, you’re planning to get married, and every single detail has to be right. The focus is all on the bride and the bridesmaids – the dresses the flowers, the colors, the fabrics. In all the excitement, it’s all too easy for the groom and his groomsmen to be dismissed into the hired gray morning suit wilderness.
But unless your wedding in going to be drop dead formal, there’s a great alternative for the men which can even become an heirloom, like the bride’s dress, and that’s a tweed suit.
Tweed? Isn’t that a bit, well, old fashioned? Not at all. Celebrities like Justin Timberlake have been seen sporting beautifully tailored tweed suits at recent red carpet events. In fact, tweed is creeping into the front of the fashion picture for men.
Tweed has a long history. Authentic tweeds are made in Scotland and Ireland, and Harris and Donegal tweeds are amongst the most famous and highest quality. Donegal tweed in particular is renowned for its robust wear qualities and its subtle and beautiful colors. Patterns include palins, checks and herringbones. Be careful when buying tweed clothing to ensure that it carries the label of authentication of its origin – a bit like the appelation controle label on wine.
So why choose tweed? Well, if you are planning a winter wedding, one of tweed’s important qualities is that it’s warm to wear; that is, if you choose one of the heavier weight cloths. Standing in the snow freezing your bits off in a lightweight suit does not make for great wedding photos. In a tweed wedding suit you will feel warm and comfortable whatever the weather – spring, winter or fall.
And of course there is the question of style. The three piece tweed suit, elegantly tailored, from the likes of tweed experts Magee, simply looks dashing. (Please resist the temptation to wear a bow tie with a tweed suit, this just looks as if you have no fashion sense whatever). For a wedding, a plain woolen tie with a color which picks out one of the tones in your suiting, or even a raw silk tie looks much better; naturally with a Windsor knot.
Speaking of Windsor, British royals and aristocracy have opted tweed for generations as the cloth of choice for both casual and formal wear. There is something about its hard wearing and practical nature which reflects strong conservative, and indeed, conservationist values. Yet it also has a certain frivolity. The colors of tweed can be subtle, and at the same time strangely daring. Tweed comes in plains and patterns; traditional windowpane check is a little too bold for a wedding suit, but an elegant fleck of color against a stormy grey, lovat green or loch blue background looks striking.
Well-tailored tweed looks good on everybody. It’s an effortless look to carry off. Remember to match your suit with brogues and argyle socks for the total “young fogey” image. A buttonhole of lucky Scottish heather is a neat and appropriate touch, or of shamrock if you choose Donegal tweed and have Irish in you somewhere.
If your bride will be coming down the aisle carrying a bunch of wild flowers and with her hair tumbling down her back, or with a sheaf of roses and a crown of braids, then you need something to set off that country look. What better than a masterfully tailed tweed wedding suit?
You do need to search around a bit to find a specialist company that can make a really good tweed suit. Magee always comes to mind.
Once your suit has been cleaned and put away, remember that it will stand you in good stead for many years to come, on many occasions. It simply doesn’t go out of fashion. Tweed wears astonishingly well, and with age, gains character and even a kind of patina. You can hand your suit down to your son or even your grandson – and you can’t say that about hired morning clothes.