Evening Wear in Daytime

Jan Libourel

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Just recently, I was taken to task by several posters for saying that Americans of taste and discrimination did not wear tuxedoes/dinner jackets for daytime weddings. They said I was being too rigid and locked in the 1920s or something to that effect.

Although wearing tuxedoes for daytime events is often characterized in the clothing fora an "American" custom, I used to think it was primarily a Mexican custom when I first became aware of the practice back in the 1970s. On reflection, I wonder if this wasn't because the Mexicans are often more public about their wedding festivities, stopping in public parks for photography and such.

I have often thought the rule about "no evening wear before 6:00" was a bit silly since at this time of year it stays light for at least two hours after six, at least in the Northern Hemisphere. I am not so rigid as to deplore wearing a tuxedo for a wedding at 5:00 or even 4:30 p.m. when the festivities are going to extend well into the evening.

However, I still think that wearing a tuxedo for a morning or early afternoon wedding (or similar event, whatever it might be) is just plain bad form. Lest I be accused of iGent-ism, let me say that I held such views for at least two decades before I was aware of the very existence of the Internet, much less the clothing fora.

I will also add that most American men who get married do not wear either eveningwear or formal or semi-formal daywear, at least in any correct sense. Instead, they wear wedding costumes that are eclectic melanges of elements of classic men's dress. The resulting garments range from at best merely curious to downright grotesque--more often the latter, alas.

Anyway, am I being dogmatically old-fashioned, or do you agree with me?
 
A tuxedo is black, and obviously for evening only. I think there's a bit of a pass granted for events that start in the evening but continue through the evening.
If it's formal and in the morning, there is morning dress.
 
I find it odd that espousing the lack of a tuxedo at a wedding would be considered rigid and locked into old fashioned ways.

As for the trend, outside of the groom and/or groomsmen, I can't remember the last time I saw pics of a daytime wedding where the male guests were wearing tuxes.
 
I recently attended a wedding where the ceremony started before noon and my cousin the groom and his father the uncle donned black tie. My nephew did too but he is five. I later realised that they were not changing for the dinner at 7:00pm. I went and changed. Perhaps it is my culture but the women found time to change their dresses so I was unsure what the modus operandi was. Groomsmen wore lounge suits.

Sadly I think we are in a state where people are unaware of conventions. My cousin got his wedding day outfit at an overnight tailor in Thailand for two hundred dollars. Yes. It sounds as bad as it reads; wing collar, coloured bow tie, no waist covering, derby shoes. I felt embarrassed following black tie guide on the Internet. In the evening, the groom looked at me a few times and asked, "Why do you look better than me? "
 

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