Wedding Tuxedos---The Godfather

Gangland Wedding---From The Godfather

Ten years ago more than 2/3 of pictures we would see from weddings would show the groom and the groomsmen, often outdoors and during the day, wearing black tuxedos.

Not that there is anything wrong with this!

“Class,” “Sophistication,” “Snobbery,” however—whatever you want to call it—generally decrees against wearing a black suit during the daytime and is especially against the tuxedo or dinner jacket during the day.

Instead, if one wishes to look quite formal, one should wear a morning coat with charcoal striped pants in place of the matched tuxedo, or a classic suit in a stripe, check, or color.

The Godfather II

Fredo in Search of the Inner WASP

To a large degree, in the United States, this belongs to the history of New England WASPs versus urban Catholics, particularly Italians.

Colorado Bespoke Suits

A Piped Swallowtail Morning Coat

To wear a tuxedo during the day would be to look like an “immigrant” at best or like one of the wedding party at Don Corleone’s in the Godfather at worst.  This type of attire, declared the experts, was quite simply improper and showed a lack of “class.”

In fact, for Godfather II, when the family is trying to take the business in a legitimate direction, costume designer Theodora Van Runkle argued with Francis Ford Coppola to get the family out of black as an expression of their WASPish ambitions.

A Grey Prince of Wales Plaid for the Summer

I personally am all for “class,” sophistication and consciousness.  And for manners as well.

That said, the Corleones do look pretty sharp in their tuxes and I see no reason that this look is to be avoided at all costs.  I certainly like the look better than most Brooks Brothers suits with the slouchy and boxy fit, and am no fan of American Trad in that sense.

A Window Pane Vest We Tailored

Although I attended Harvard myself, there is a small (or even large?) part of me that would prefer looking like a mobster to looking like a New England upper cruster.

Nonetheless, I am happy to see that, in today’s weddings, the black tuxedo is becoming more and more rare.

Colors and patterns are back.  Morning coats are back.  Eclectic is back.

We make suits for summer weddings in natural colored linens and raw silks or plaid jackets for fall weddings in colors that coordinate with the falling leaves.

A Bold Morning Frock

For those more formally inclined, we make gorgeous morning coats with charcoal striped trousers, picking up, perhaps, one of the wedding colors in the pant stripe.

Classic Silk Herringbone Suit

None of this is necessarily better.

But it is a much better chance to exercise some of the sophistication that is possible in menswear.

Back in the 1990s, for example, you went to a “fancy” restaurant to dine on steaks or perhaps surf’n'turf or warmed over French-style cuisine.  There were only a small handful of expensive tastes available to the American diner.

Today, however, everyone is a sophisticate.  Friends sit around and discuss balsamic reductions and how to cook kohlrabi. Fine dining can include flavors from Korea or South America just as easily as from France.

And all of this makes life richer, more reflective—-Even if snobbery can leave a bad taste in the mouth.

Here at Denver Bespoke, building the perfect wedding suit starts with the tastes and interests of the bride and groom and the setting of the wedding.

From this starting point, we sketch ideas and search out the perfect fabrics to build a totally unique look that is styled to your individuality.  We love black—but often for a touch of the Victorian, goth or punk rock look.

Every suit that we make is custom tailored here in our studio in Denver, Colorado for clients around the world.

Boardwalk Empire Style SuitOur completely custom line of suits–which are individually handmade to order right here in our studio in Denver, Colorado–often have a vintage flair to them.Wool Peak Lapel Suit
Philosophically, our suits hark back to what we consider to be the most interesting period for men’s dress—the period between 1907 and 1921–when many of the distinctive looks of modern dress had been established, but before everything became entirely normalized by the advent of mass production in menswear.
At this point, suits were still meant to convey individuality and to express tastes, habits, and activities.
Although pocket styles have always been as much about conveying to others what one might put in such pockets as they are about functionality, one could, as it were, express more things which such details than one can today.
Our latest generation of suits strives to be distinctively contemporary in its look and functionality, while, at the same time, drawing upon the richest period of our history.
We also incorporate a vocabulary of vintage handwork into these pieces.  The corners of pockets are tacked with crowsfoot and D-tacks.
one button  suitVintage style handwork buttonholes appear on the lapels.
Hand pick-stitching and lapel treatments add an aura of the handmade to the pieces.
Cuffs can be functional or highly decorative.

Our signature cutaway style is perfect for those times when you need to roll up your sleeves because of the heat or because a piece of machinery is in need of repair.
In this posting, I have put up pictures of many of our favorite recent suits.
The army green suit with brown vest is the outfit that I made for my own wedding this summer.
The fabric is a wool sateen with tons of sheen, and the details are drawn from a host of amazing vintage pieces.
This suit (like the navy suit with 3 buttons and the bold plaid cotton summer suit) are “One Button Suits”.
Although each of these suits has 3 buttons on the front, only the top button functions.  The other 2 buttons are left undone so that the vest shows below the cutaway shape.
“One Button” suits are by far the slimmest, most elongating silhouette around, but are impossible to find in shops.
The navy 2 button suit (made from basketweave tweed) pictures illustrate our signature shoulder style.
Here the shoulder seam is pushed back to form a distinctive look with more visual interest in the back panels.  The fronts have hacking flaps with crowsfoot tacks and a handmade lapel buttonhole.
The pictures of the white suit show a distinctive turn of the 20th century take on the summer suit, with narrow cuffs, patch pockets and peak lapels.
The light grey plaid suit shows a look with hacking flaps and our cutaway style in a two button look.  This suit also featured contrast coral collar melton.
Also note the wide contour waistbands on many of these suits.  This detail allows us to shape the waist as much as necessary for comfort and a perfect fit.
We can currently make fewer than 50 of our completely custom “1909 Bespoke” suits per year (although we can make many more pants and vests).
2 Button 3 PC SuitSo if you are thinking of ordering a suit for a wedding or time-sensitive event, let us know as soon as possible.
We muslin fit each of these suits.  For non-local customers, this means that we will mail you a cotton mock-up of the suit to try on.
You send us pictures of yourself wearing it, and we will alter the pattern to fit you.
Contact AJ@denverbespoke.com for more info, and so that we can get started working on a custom design for you.

The initial set of engagement photographs is by amazing Denver and Fort Collins Colorado area photographer Sarah Christine Photography (www.sarahchristinephotography.com/) be sure to check out her work and to choose her to photograph your wedding.

Photos by www.lynnterry.com

The Victorian era was an age of excitement, experimentation, science, and progress.
Everything seemed possible and imminent.  
The material world was like a door about to be unlocked.  The mind was a mystery that science could pry into.
We love to make steampunk clothing because it represents this moment and uncovers the analogies between the Victorians and today’s world.
The Victorians were simultaneously more certain than we are today and less certain.  
They believed that they were on a road to infinite progress and change, but were only just at the beginning of the path.
Today’s DIY and geek culture feeds off of a similar spirit.
We are all engineers hacking the material world, unlocking the potential of atoms through the power of bits.
Lianna and I are so much on the side of techne—on the side of a knowledge that allows us to do and to make.

Photos by www.worldstudio.ca

Our process of production and design combines computer CAD work for a completely custom fit, individual fabrics we design and print using advanced inks, and computerized machinery for cutting vinyl, with all of the traditional arts of tailoring and dressmaking that require nothing but a needle and a thread.Steampunk Clothing
Our muslin fitting process for the suits is again a combination of the old and the new.
We mail our customers traditional cotton mock-ups of the suit to try on before making the final pieces.
back belt victorian pantThe customers send us back digital photos of themselves trying the pieces on, and we feed this information back into the computer to change and manipulate the pattern until it is exactly right.
frock coat backThe pictures show many of the styles that we have made or are making for steampunk weddings along with some wonderful pictures of the weddings themselves.Chocolate Brown Frock Coat
The black suit with the red cravat shows what we call the “Steampunk Anime Suit”.

Brown Victorian Tux

This suit is made from a wool gabardine with satin face lapels.
The style looks and feels Victorian, but the details are completely modern.
The brown suit with red pinstripes and red satin face lapels, shows a Victorian style vest and pant, but with numerous Western style details and snaps.
The brown suit with a sage green piping shows a morning frock that cuts away into tails.

Photos by www.joshgruetzmacher.com

It has peak lapels, a pant with a back belt (which can be adjustable or decorative) and a handmade top hat to match.

Photo By www.MarkBrooke.com

The awesome wedding photos show two weddings where the grooms wore wool tailcoats and silk vests, a wedding with a double-breasted Prince Albert frock made from silk noil and velveteen pants (for a Victorian-era meets 1960s look) and an outfit with a black wool double-breasted vest with pearlized leather pocket welts.
The sketches show a bride and groom ensemble that we have in the works for this summer.

University Coats

It has a leather corset on the bride and matching leather tuxedo stripes on the groom’s pant, and also a set of concepts for modern looking university coats.
Contact AJ (aj@denverbespoke.com) to talk more about ideas for your wedding.

Be sure to check out the photographer’s websites for more photos.  Lynn Terry did the photos for the  wedding with the black vest and gold welts. Terry Martin the wedding with the skipping groom.

Josh Gruetzmacher the San Francisco wedding with the white slik frock.  And Mark Brooke, the groom with the tails and peacock lapels.