Does the Father of the Bride Match the Groomsmen? Etiquette

For fathers, the marriage of their daughter is a once-in-a-lifetime experience and often stands as a memorable highlight in their life. This is the moment he gets to walk his daughter down the aisle, a pivotal event signifying her transition into married life. As such, father of the bride and groom attire plays a pivotal role in commemorating the day.

Does the father of the bride match the groomsmen? Traditionally, the father of the bride’s attire matches with the groomsmen. However, unique touches and changes may be added, which not only reflect the father’s personal style but also make him stand out from the rest of the wedding party. These elements of individuality in the father of the bride and groom attire ensure that he isn’t just matching the rest but is also given his distinctive spotlight.

The attire commonly consists of a tuxedo or a suit and accessories such as ties, boutonnières, shoes, and more. There are a few tips to keep in mind as the father of the bride’s attire is planned.

Does the Father of the Bride Match the Groomsmen?

It is common practice for the father of the bride to match the groomsmen’s attire. The father usually wears the same tuxedo or suit as the rest of the groomsmen.

An aspect of the father of the bride’s outfit can be changed to set him apart from the wedding party. They may wear a necktie or bowtie with a unique pattern or change the color of their button-up shirt. This small change can be done to match with his wife.

However, the changes should still fit within the wedding’s overall color scheme. This coordination will be pleasing to the eye and will result in beautiful pictures from the wedding.  

Tuxedo or Suits

As mentioned earlier, the father of the bride should not overshadow the groom but be set apart from the groomsmen. If everyone is planning on wearing tuxedos, the father can go for a tuxedo with a lighter hue than the rest of the groomsmen. Likewise, the father can also wear a different colored vest.

Shirt and Tie

The father of the bride may opt for a slightly lighter or darker shirt. Another option is to wear a tie that has a different pattern. This is a good opportunity for the father to showcase some personality through his outfit.


It is traditional for the father of the bride, as with the rest of the boys and men in the wedding party, to wear a boutonnière. A boutonnière is a floral decoration attached to the lapel of a tuxedo or suit, usually consisting of a bud or a single flower.

If the budget for this accessory is limited, the couple may reduce the number of people to be given boutonnières. However, it is imperative that the father of the bride still be given one.

The general rule for any kind of change is that while giving the parents of the couple an opportunity to shine, the focus should still be on the bride and groom themselves.

Tips for the Father of the Bride’s Attire

  • Plan for the Attire Early: This ensures there’s ample time for any alterations. With the potential body changes leading up to the wedding, timely alterations ensure optimal fit and comfort.

  • Accessorizing: Apart from the basics, additional accessories like ties, belts, and shoes can be coordinated with the groomsmen or even aligned with the mother of the bride’s dress. Consider options like bow ties or pocket squares to further differentiate.

  • Let Him Show Some Personality: Allow for subtle additions like a unique tie pattern or quirky cufflinks.

  • Coordinate with Other Father Figures: Ensuring that the father of the bride and groom attire coordinate yet differ slightly creates a cohesive yet individualistic look.

Tuxedo and Suit: What is the Difference?

Many people use these terms interchangeably. However, there is a difference in the fabric used. A tuxedo will have satin on the pocket trim, buttons, and lapels; likewise, the pants will have a stripe of satin along the side of the legs. A suit is only made of one fabric with no frills.

The complementary accessories also vary between the two. A tuxedo is more appropriately worn with a bow tie and a vest; neckties are traditionally paired with a suit. However, nowadays, there is more freedom to mix and match accessories.

In terms of formality, the tuxedo is a touch more formal than a suit. It is also likely to set the father of the bride apart from the rest of the guests.

Look Out for Discounts

Certain retailers will offer discounts when a certain number of suits or tuxedos is availed. Ordering suits for the entire bridal party, including the father of the bride, may get you a considerable discount. This is a good option to save some money if there are budgetary constraints.

Consider the Setting of the Wedding

The day and location of the wedding should be something to take note of when planning the attire. The temperature in the area may influence clothing options, especially in consideration of comfort. This is particularly important for outdoor weddings.

Final Thoughts

Should the father of the bride match the groomsmen? Essentially, yes. In terms of color, theme, and formality, the father of the bride and groom attire should be in harmony with the groomsmen. Yet, by adding personal touches and accessories, he can effectively carve out his distinct space in the bridal party.