Friday, May 21, 2010

Well Groom’d (by guest blogger David Jensen)

After reading my Words of Wisdom last week about looking fab in your weddings photos (tips for both the ladies and their gents), our awesome designer, writer and client friend David was inspired to write some words of wisdom just for the guys, since they're so often neglected by wedding articles and could probably use some good advice. Thanks, David! Without further ado, here are his biggest tips...


When it comes to looking your best on your wedding day, you might think that in comparison to the bride, you’re off the hook. Actually, you might be right. After all, everyone will be watching her, not you. As they should. This, however, doesn’t mean you can shave in the morning and kick your feet up for the rest of the day. Turn off Madden 2010, gents. Some of you out there need to know how to present yourself for the nuptials so that your bride will actually want to come all the way down that aisle…

Let’s start from the top, shall we?

~ If you’re planning on getting a haircut for the wedding and don’t have a reliable, stand-by shop around, get online and look for the appropriate barbershop for you. Look for ratings, reviews and if these places have websites – they might have a photo gallery for you to see their work. Price should not be an issue. This is, after all, your wedding day and the difference between a $7.00 haircut and a $40.00 haircut will be apparent. Schedule a mop-chop a couple weeks ahead of time so that you won’t look like you just got drafted (unless that’s what you’re going for) and that you have enough time to figure out how to comfortably style your new do. If you have stylishly longer hair, at least have a barber trim up those split ends.

~ A clean neck is a neck worth a woman’s touch during a slow dance. Every barber will give you a neck trim during your cut, but a barber worth his or her salt will shave your neck, most likely with a straight razor. If you want things done right, this is the way to go. The back of your neck should look like a Cadillac, not the floor of your frat’s bathroom.

~ Keep the spiders out of your nose. Invest in a nose hair trimmer or at least take a pair of scissors to those legs creeping out of your beak. If you don’t think this is a big deal, think again. Women notice these things, so get a mirror, get some clippers and turn on the bright lights to see what you might be missing. The same goes for ears. You may not be 900 years old, but in the wrong light, your ears could end up looking like Yoda’s. No, that isn’t “awesome.”

~ To beard or not to beard? Good question. As a furry-faced man myself, I have a few opinions on the matter. First and foremost, what does your to-be wife think? Her opinion matters most. Second, think about how often you have facial hair versus how often you’ve got a clean look. If you’re usually baby-faced, give yourself a shave (don’t forget the after shave) in the morning and you’ll be fine. If on the other hand you resemble that of a lumberjack more often than not, feel free to keep that flavor-saver, just clean it up. This means cheekbones, under the beard and around the neck and Adam’s apple. Above all, think about your future. If you fancy yourself someone to consistently carry a luxurious face-mane through out life, it might look strange if your chin is bald in your wedding pictures, and vice versa.

~ Tie the knot. Correctly. There’s no more of an obvious giveaway that you don’t dress up often than a poorly tied tie. Hopefully you guys out there know by now that there are certain knots for certain ties. A wider tie and spread-collar shirt calls for a wider knot, so on and so forth. Your tie should also look appropriate with the rest of your ensemble. If you’ve got a skinny suit or tux with narrow lapels, you should have more of a closed-collared shirt with a narrower tie (about 1”-2.5” inches wide.) Don’t forget that a tie isn’t tied until you’ve got that perfect dimple under the knot and that the bottom of the tie reaches down to the middle of your belt buckle.

~ In spite of it all, your tux or suit is the key factor here. It’s what your bride, her parents and the entirety of the attendees see first when they look at you. If you look like you’re wearing your eighth grade graduation suit or attempting to pay tribute to Charlie Chaplin, people will notice. Stick to these easy rules for the jacket portion and you’ll be fine. Shoulder seems should fall exactly where their namesake states: the shoulders. The sleeves on the jacket should allow the sleeves of your shirt to peek out about a quarter of an inch, half an inch for French-cuffed shirts. Armholes should be cut high.

~ Finally, when it comes to actually wearing this thing, do not, I repeat, DO NOT button every button. It isn’t an overcoat; it’s a suit/tux jacket. Never, ever button the bottom button. Keep the middle button on a 3-button closed, or keep the top button on a 2-button closed when you’re standing, walking, dancing. When you sit down, open it up and breathe for a while.

~ Baring torrential downpours on your wedding, there likely won’t be a flood. Unless you’re hip enough to pull off short pants resembling those sometimes seen in British fashion mags, get a pair of pants that are hemmed properly and are minimal on what industry professionals and other fashion snobs call “shelving”, which is when your pants bunch up like accordions on top of your shoes. And speaking of accordions, stay as far away from pleats as possible. It’s flat fronts or nothing, people, and if your tux shop doesn’t offer any, it’s probably time to move on.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, you should be. There’s a lot that goes into a wedding and if you’re not accustomed to sweating the small stuff, welcome to boot camp. But think of it this way: it’s one of the most remarkable days of your life and when you look back at your (quality, stylishly Reminisce-shot) photos, you can feel confident that you took the necessary steps to try to look good enough for the love of your life. You can thank me later.

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