What should men wear for a casual wedding?

Casual weddings – those no-tux required ceremonies held in off-beat locations like beaches, backyards, or barns – have become the norm for young adults. What was once a trend confined largely to Brooklyn and the Bay Area is now commonplace. But just because casual weddings have grown popular doesn’t mean they have become easy to navigate.

Knowing how to dress for a casual wedding requires a bit of work. In this blog post, Taelor stylists discuss the complexities involved in choosing casual attire for a wedding that will make you look good and keep the happy couple happy.

You’ve received an invitation to a wedding. Perhaps your college roommate is getting hitched. Or maybe two of your coworkers have fallen in love. Or maybe your ne'er-do-well cousin has finally decided to settle down. 

But your joy over the upcoming nuptials quickly turns to confusion. The invitation calls for “casual attire.” Or “semi-casual” or “dressy casual” or something similarly unclear. Complicating matters is that the invitation says the wedding will be held on a beach, or in a barn or the rooftop of a warehouse or some other decidedly informal locale. And all you know for sure is that the expensive suit you generally wear to weddings probably won’t cut it. 

So what should a guy wear to a casual wedding?


When choosing casual wedding attire for men, think location, location, location

“You want to dress to match the location,” says Melissa Slavick, a Taelor stylist. If it's a beach wedding, make sure you wear linen or something lightweight. If it’s in a barn, you want to match that outdoorsy kind of feel with a plaid shirt or a really nice, crisp denim shirt. You can add a suede jacket to that.”

Casula beach wedding attire

Nicole Gibbons, another Taelor stylist, says the broad location of a casual wedding matters as much as the specific location.

“I live in the Bay Area, and in the Bay Area stuff is super casual already. So for weddings, I feel like chinos are definitely appropriate for California weddings with nice button ups,” Nicole said. “That’s what I would choose for a guy who is going to a more casual, low-key wedding. Maybe with a fun color or a fun print. But nothing too crazy.”

But even in the hyper-casual world of California, Nicole suggests that the classics have a place at a wedding.  “You can pair a navy blazer with black dress pants or black chinos and wear it with a fun shirt that still matches that blazer but just breaks it up and makes it more casual,” she says. Some of the seamless blazers Taelor carries from the Ministry of Supply are well-suited for this, according to Nicole. “They’re more of a sports coat and more fun.” 


What should a man wear to a summer wedding/ beach wedding/ country wedding/urban wedding?

Scott Shapiro, another Taelor stylist, says that regardless of location, the key to choosing the right attire for a non-traditional ceremony is to put the emphasis on the word “wedding” in the phrase “casual wedding.”

“It's casual, but you still have to kind of dress up a little bit,” Scott says. “You can wear a button down shirt with a linen pant or something similar that has a polished look to it but is not like ‘black tie.’”

In particular, Scott favors having fun with different colors of suits than would be appropriate in a more formal setting. “Maybe tan or lighter blue or something like that, and throwing in a printed shirt,” he says.

And for a warm weather, very casual wedding on a beach or in a park, Scott says a guy can’t go wrong with something in linen. “You can always find a classic tailored look in a linen blend of some sort. And that to me always feels like a good compromise. Linen already feels a little bit casual. It's just kind of an easier, lighter weight way of putting that together a classic silhouette,” he says

Casula barn wedding attire 

Ask for help  

Taelor customers can always reach out to their stylists with questions, Melissa says. And when a guy gets an invitation to a casual wedding, it may be time to do exactly that. 

“Reach out to us first and give us the location,” she suggests. “If the wedding is going to be at a specific hotel or a specific venue, we can look up the venue, see what the dress code usually is, and send you what we think is appropriate for there.”

If you’re not a Taelor customer yet, Melissa suggests concentrating on fit. “Just make sure that everything fits right, because even though it's casual, you want to look crisp and you still want to match that wedding vibe.” For new customers who sign up for our newsletter, we are offering a 20% off the first month. Sign up and subscribe now.

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Featured image by Freepik

By Paul Conley