Style Guide: Suspenders for Weddings & Formal Events

Posted on February 02, 2015 by JJ Suspenders

Suspenders are interesting, versatile accessories. They’re practical and comfortable, but they also add personality to otherwise ordinary outfits. One of our favorite ways to make a bold fashion statement is by wearing suspenders with formal attire. While we could sit here and wax poetic for hours on end about our undying love for suspenders, instead we’ve gathered our tips and tricks—and standout reasons—for making them part of your ensemble for formal occasions. 

Suspenders & Weddings

If you’ve been to a couple of weddings over the past year, you may have noticed a move towards slightly less formal—but still beautiful—parties and ceremonies. Modern weddings are playful and fun, and feature elements that express the bride and groom’s personalities. Because weddings have become a little bit more relaxed in terms of setting and even attire, grooms have turned to suspenders to add a little bit of polish and structure to their wedding suit, and to the look of their groomsmen.

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Suspenders as part of the groom’s attire are always elegant (think beautiful fabrics and luxurious details), but they’re also a way to tie the groom’s overall look back to the special day, and more often than not, to the bride. You’ll often find that the groom’s suspenders match the color of the bride’s accessories, shoes, or bouquet; they might also match the wedding theme or décor for a unified look.

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Suspenders for groomsmen are often a way to show who’s part of the wedding party, as they create cohesion. Suspenders are a great accessory for tying in various groomsmen looks—they can be the common accessory that all of the groomsmen wear even if they have slightly different outfits. This is not only economical (buying one pair of suspenders versus an entire suit), but it’s also practical, and allows each person in your wedding party to express their uniqueness and wear clothes that are comfortable to them.

If you have been invited to attend a wedding as a guest, wear a pair of suspenders that complement the suit (or outfit) you have chosen. 

Suspenders & Galas, Balls, and Other Black Tie Events

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While suspenders are not exactly necessary to complete a handsome ensemble suitable for a black tie event, they definitely make for an interesting, personal addition.

While black tie events definitely allow for some personalization, it’s often limited to small touches—cufflinks, shoes, watch—that are often neutral (most likely black) in color and don’t feature too much personalization. 

Suspenders are quite the opposite: because they’re tucked away under your tuxedo jacket, they can be as interesting as you want them to be. While we don’t recommend anything too wild (fluorescent stripes are a no-no in our book), you can show off your style by wearing suspenders with a subtle hint of color, a pair that is personalized with a monogram, embossing on the leather details, or that features a unique pattern such as your family tartan. 

Suspenders are also great because they help keep your pants (and to some extent your shirt) in place, by making sure your trousers are held up just so, so that your shirt doesn’t come un-tucked and your trousers don’t accidentally drop lower than your hips when you sit down or lean forward. The only time we do not recommend wearing suspenders with black tie is if you are planning on wearing a cummerbund; they serve a similar purpose so only one is necessary.

We hope you enjoy experimenting with suspenders at your next formal event!


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