A reader writes:
“As best man at a wedding happening in about four weeks, I have been tasked with ensuring that each of the groomsmen is properly attired.
“I would like to permit those groomsmen who own tuxes to wear them provided that they have (a) peak lapels, (b) striped pant legs and (c) black bowtie and cummerbund.
“How much can the groomsmens’ tuxes vary and still be okay? Is it alright for some tuxes to be one button and some to be two button, for example? Is it better to force everyone to rent so as to ensure uniformity?
“I am already planning to get identical shirts and shoes for each groomsman. Thank you for your help!”
You’re in the clear.
Assuming that they’re not white or purple, let them wear their own tuxes. You’ve already done your homework on the important stuff—lapels, pants, tie—and that’s what counts.
Everything else being equal, it’s better to wear your own then rent… even before you factor in the cash you save. When you own a tux you get it tailored perfectly. It fits. It looks good on you. When you rent? The store does the best they can, but it’s less likely that they’ll have the perfect cut for your body.
Your scenario is ideal. Pull the trigger.
There’s one more thing you need to consider: the shoes. Make sure they all have good, simple black shoes that are in nearly perfect shape but (at least somewhat) broken in. Avoid a mix of patent leather and regular black.
For more, check out The Plunge’s 20 Rules on Formalwear.