The Ultimate Guide to Father of the Groom Attire

Everything Dad needs to know about how to dress for the big day.
tres dean Associate Menswear Editor
by
Tres Dean
tres dean Associate Menswear Editor
Tres Dean
Associate Menswear Editor
  • Tres writes and edits articles for The Knot, with a specialty in menswear and suiting.
  • He brings over a decade of expertise in the field garnered as a writer, editor, copywriter, and trend specialist.
  • Before joining The Knot he covered menswear for publications including GQ, AskMen, Men’s Health, Sharp Magazine, Highsnobiety, and Spy.
Updated May 02, 2023
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We'll get right to it: there is no de-facto rulebook for father of the groom attire ((mother of the bride attire is another story). This is perhaps a little intimidating— with no rules to follow, it can feel easier to mess up. . However, the reality is the opposite: because there are so few hard guidelines, you have more flexibility in putting together your wedding look. You've got plenty of responsibilities on your plate already. Focus on your toast before you start stressing about your suit. Once it's time to put your outfit together, just follow these guidelines and you're sure to show up looking your best, with nothing left to do but celebrate the groom and, oh, write a thank-you note for your father of the groom gift (shameless plug)

In this article:

    What Does the Father of the Groom Wear?

    The father of the groom's attire is largely going to be determined by the dress code of the wedding and what the bride and groom plan on rocking down the aisle. Other factors that come into play are the venue, the weather, and what time of day the wedding is taking place (for example, tuxedos are reserved for evening soirees. . Start by talking to the groom about his look and ask if he has any preferences on your ensemble. From there, you'll be able to put together a winning look.

    Formal Wedding Attire for Father of the Groom

    For a formal affair you're going to want to dress to the nines—you are the father of the groom afterall, own it!. Tuxes aren't required at formal events but if the groom is going to be wearing one you should ask him if he'd like you to wear one as well. If not (or if the wedding is taking place during the day) stick with a more formal suit, something with a tie and a nice dress shirt.

    Casual Wedding Attire for Father of the Groom

    A casual wedding gives you even fewer restrictions in terms of dress code. The only fashion faux pas here would be showing up in a coat and tails (or, you know, cargo shorts). This one is largely going to be determined by weather and location. An outdoor wedding in the warmer months may be a good excuse for linens or breathable cotton suits, whereas something in the fall may call for a flannel or herringbone suit (maybe without a tie to lean into the casual vibe of the day). Again though, run your outfit by the groom if you're having any doubts.

    Beach Wedding Attire for Father of the Groom

    Beach weddings are the wild west of wedding wear–dress codes really range from casual (no shoes!) to semi-formal.. For this one, perhaps more than any other wedding dress code, default to the groom. A linen suit in a creamy off-white or beige is as safe a bet as anything, but this is the rare wedding where you can get away with a Cuban button-down and shorts (without cargo pockets, mind you) if it's where the vibe is. We'll say it again—run you look by the groom, and maybe his other half too.

    What Color Does the Father of the Groom Wear?

    Tradition doesn't really dictate this one—here again, there aren't hard and fast rules.. The father of the groom can wear whatever color suit he wants, dress code-permitting. The same thing goes for accessories and shoes. However, just because there's no tradition in place doesn't mean you can't lean into the celebratory nature of the occasion when getting dressed, Dad.

    Should the Groom and Father of the Groom Match?

    Generally you don't see grooms and their fathers in full-on matching outfits, but if Dad wants to wear a suit in the same color as the groom's it can be a nice way to tie the two looks together. Some cohesion between the suits can make family photos all the more special (though matching completely might mean everyone looks the same, which you probably don't want). If matching suit shades isn't quite your preference (or if it's a black or white tie wedding and the suits will be matching by default) you can always coordinate with the accessories. Matching cuff links or ties in the same color or pattern can be a great way to tie coordinate.

    Do the Father of the Groom and Father of the Bride Match?

    This isn't a requirement or a tradition at weddings. However, as with the former, there's nothing stopping the fathers of the bride and groom from coordinating accessories or finding a unique way to connect their wedding day outfits to one another.

    Does the Father of the Groom Match the Groomsmen?

    Unless the groom has specifically requested otherwise, the father of the groom and the groomsmen do not wear matching suits to the weddingunless Dad has been tapped to be best man.

    Top 10 Father of the Groom Suit Picks

    J Crew Crosby Suit

    For the Dads looking to keep it simple, J Crew's Crosby suit is a can't-go-wrong classic. You'll stand out in all the right ways without distracting from the man of the hour. You can dress this up for a more formal wedding or dress it down with a bow tie and pocket square for a more casual one.

    Size Range: Jacket: 36S-48R Pants: 30/30-40/32 | Charcoal/Atlantic Blue

    Wilke Rodriguez Slim Fit Suit

    If you're looking for the most bang for your buck in a single suit, this number from Wilke Rodriguez is a great pick At under $150 and in a rich charcoal check print, it's a great option for formal, semi-formal, and casual affairs alike–maybe skip this one for a beach affair. . Itt'll have you looking sharp on the big day.

    Size Range: 36S-58L | Charcoal Check

    Spier & MacKay Royal Blue Three Piece Suit

    The cool thing about a three-piece suit is that it's very easy to turn it into a two-piece suit. The folks at Spier & MacKay make old-school English tailoring accessible at a price point that's tough to beat. This royal blue three-piece stunner is among their best offerings. A three-piece is a great choice for a formal wedding, and you can always make it a little more casual by removing the waistcoat when you're tearing up the dance floor at the reception.

    Size Range: 34R-46L (Trouser Alterations Provided)

    Brooks Brothers Regent Fit 1818 Suit

    Brooks Brothers has been the quintessential American menswear brand since it first opened its doors over 200 years ago, making it the oldest American apparel brand in continuous operation to date. They have been nailing suiting since day one.Their Regent Fit 1818 suit is among the best they have to offer, a simple and classic suit available in a wide range of sizes that'll look great on any and all fathers of the groom.

    Size Range: 36-60 | Black/Charcoal/Navy

    Big & Tall Sizing:

    BOSS Hugo Wool Tuxedo

    The BOSS Hugo tuxedo is named for the brand's founder for a reason. In a lineup of killer suits it's among the best.. This tux stands out because of how subtle it is—t doesn't have garish detailing or attention-grabbing proportions. It's the perfect tuxedo for a Dad who wants to look his best without drawing attention away from the groom.

    Size Range: 36S-48R

    State & Liberty Athletic Fit Blazer

    The folks at State & Liberty specialize in business and formalwear for guys with a larger, broader frame. They are a hit with athletes but you don't have to have a ten-day contract to look tunnel walk-ready in their threads. This light blue suit is perfect for Dads dressing for spring and summer weddings, or any outdoor affair.

    Size Range: 36-48

    Banana Republic Signature Hopsack Suit

    Banana Republic Signature Hopsack Suit for father of the groom
    Photo: Banana Republic

    Banana Republic leaned into their expedition-style heritage roots when they rebranded in 2022. The result is a selection of suiting perfect for anyone trying to channel their inner Hemmingway or Indiana Jones (iIf that isn't as Dad as it gets, we don't know what is). Their signature Hopsack suit looks great with a linen shirt at beachfront nuptials or at a farmhouse wedding in the fall. It's as versatile as it is distinguished.

    Size Range: 34S-48L | Khaki, Black, Navy Blue

    The Black Tux Midnight Shawl Tuxedo

    For the Dads looking to suit up for a formal occasion but who maybe don't plan on doing it again any time soon, a rental is always a good option. The Black Tux is the premiere destination for tuxedo rentals, offering wares like this suave blue shawl-neck tuxedo (complete with shirt, shoes, and every accessory you need) that'll have you looking every bit the Father of the Groom you are at a fraction of the price you'd pay to keep the look in your closet.

    Size Range: 34-58

    Indochino Fleetwood Moleskin Double-Breasted Suit

    A wedding–especially one in which you're the Dad of the hour (or at least one of them)-is a great time to get a made-to-measure suit. Indochino has long been one of the leading brands in custom suiting. They willcut you a suit that fits perfectly, trust us. Their customization options allow you to design pretty much any kind of suit you could possibly imagine. Before you're overwhelmed with choice, consider this double-breasted number. It provides a distinguished vibe for a distinguished Dad.

    Size Range: Made to Measure

    Ralph Lauren Purple Label Barathea Peak Tuxedo

    Being the father of the groom is as good an excuse as any to go all-out on a luxe tux and there are few designers who do it better than Ralph Lauren. The Barathea tux from the brand's high-end Purple Label is the sort of piece Paul Newman would wear to the Oscars. Channel a bit of that old-school Hollywood swagger into your groom's big day.

    Size Range: 36S-46L

    Answering Your Father of the Groom Etiquette Questions

    What is appropriate for the father of the groom if the groom wears jeans?

    The soon-to-be-weds always set the tone for the rest of the wedding and that includes the dress code. If the groom is getting married in jeans it's safe to assume the father of the groom has relative freedom in what he wears to the wedding. Dad doesn't have to wear denim but he can if he's inclined.

    Who pays for the father of the groom's suit?

    The father of the groom should pay for his own suit.

    Does the bride decide what the father of the groom should wear?

    Not directly, though the bride has input on the dress code of the wedding. That said, if you want a second opinion on your outfit any bride would likely be happy to give their input.

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