How much should formal wear cost?

It’s your wedding day! And what better excuse to get dressed up and look dapper than the day you’re getting married?

The perfect suit and formalwear are going to help you nail that look. You don’t want to look like you’re just wearing a suit to work. You want to stand out for what is going to be one of the most important days of your life.

Purchasing or hiring formal wear from a professional is going to help you achieve that look for yourself and your groom squad. But how much should your formal wear cost?

We’ve taken a look at what couples in the past have done with their formal wear to give you the best idea of how much you should spend, whether to hire or buy and what options you have for your day.

How much should I spend on formal wear?

How much you spend on your wedding suits is going to depend on the style of suit you get, whether you’re hiring or buying, and how many suits you’re paying for.

This last point is particularly good to keep an eye on. The average couple has 8 people in their wedding party, including themselves. The traditional even split between bridesmaids and groomsmen means that’s four suits to consider in your cost. One for yourself and one for each of your three groomsmen.

Of course, the makeup of the wedding party is changing so this might be slightly different for you. But in general, the average amount spent on formal wear for 2019 is $1,449 around Australia.

Those in New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia are likely going to spend more than this average. The warmer states of Queensland and Western Australia will spend less than this average, likely due to the style of suits being more suited to this warmer weather.

Victoria – $1,558

New South Wales – $1,588

Queensland – $1,266

South Australia – $1,564

Western Australia – $943

Australian Capital Territory – $1,410

If you’re still not sure how much you should be spending on your formal wear take a look at who should pay for what in your wedding party. 

Hiring, buying or having something custom-made

Once you’ve worked out your formal wear budget it’s time to take a look at what is most suitable for you. You can hire your suit, purchase something off the rack, or even have something custom-made.

81% of couples in the past have chosen an official formal wear provider to make sure they nail their wedding day look.

27% of grooms will have their wedding suit custom made. We’re also seeing more grooms making a personalised statement with these features, from socks to suit jackets. Don’t be afraid to stand out. After all, it’s your wedding day as well!

Most couples are choosing to purchase their suits off the rack from an official formal wear provider. 50% of grooms will purchase off-the-rack suits for themselves and their groomsmen.

23% of grooms will then opt to hire their suits and formal wear. This can be a good option if you already have a lot of suits, don’t want to buy something for one-use, or are on a budget.

What style of formal wear is right for you

Now it’s time to look at what style is going to suit you best for your big day. There are plenty of styles for you to choose from for your big day.

Firstly, there’s the classic suit. A black, navy or grey suit paired with a white shirt, tie or bow tie and black or tan shoes will look fantastic on your wedding day. This is probably going to be the most comfortable option for you if you’re not used to wearing suits all the time as you can easily take your suit jacket off. A variation of this would be a designer or standout jacket or pants. A bold colour or pattern will be sure to make a statement.

Next, there’s the three-piece suit. One up from your classic suit this includes a vest and makes you look that bit more formal. This is a good option for classic or modern weddings.

If you’re having a black-tie, elegant or luxury event then opt for a tuxedo. This might be one of the only opportunities you really get to wear a tux and channel your inner James Bond!

If you have more of a bohemian or beach theme for your wedding you might want to go the opposite way. Smart chinos, a good shirt and a bow tie or tie will be a good way to make your day formal without going too formal for the theme. Suspenders can add a bit more texture to this look.

Use any of these looks to make your own statement. Burgundy suits and suit jackets, floral bow ties, personalised cuff links and even flower crowns have all been used by grooms who have wanted to make a statement in the past.

What to look for in a good formal wear supplier

Now that you know what you’re looking for, how much you want to spend, and whether you’re hiring or buying it’s time to look at actual suppliers. So how do you know if a formal wear provider is any good or not?

Couples praise formal wear suppliers who can coordinate suit colours with samples of wedding or bridesmaid dresses. They also like it when they’re flexible for fittings in different schedules and can choose suits based on personal tastes and current trends.

Look out for reviews where couples have received the final product too close to the wedding date or miss little details such as the cufflinks. Also, watch out for those who try and change the colour once the groom or couple have already picked something. There’s a difference between offering advice and not letting you go your own way so keep a note of this in all your communications.


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23% of couples trust online reviews more than a personal recommendation and 53% trust them equally. So make sure you look at these online reviews from grooms who have done it before!

Ready to hire or purchase your own formal wear? Get inspired by suppliers in your local area today. 

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