Well-Groomed: You're a photographer and you designed your amazing wedding suite, and it's obvious that you have style. Was it easy for you to decide what to wear for the wedding, or was it a struggle to decide to break with the suit/tux convention?
Dan Young: Ha ha! I know what I like and I know how to 'borrow' other people's style but I wouldn't say I have a great deal of my own. The photography is only a hobby and even though I'm a graphic designer by day, it still took an excruciatingly long time to arrive at the final artwork [for our invitations]. I had expected the choice of outfit to be relatively quick and straightforward in comparison but like many of the wedding decisions, I was soon proved wrong. Deciding to ditch the suit was easy but choosing what to replace it with turned out to be anything but.
W-G: It's not often that grooms opt for shorts, boat shoes, and fedoras, but you did and it totally worked. What tips would you give guys who want to make unconventional style choices for their wedding?
DY: Even though Rommalee, my wife, was concerned about how such a casual style would sit visually next to her dress, we both wanted the occasion to be relaxed and an honest reflection of both our personalities. I've never been a frequent suit-wearer and although I have nothing against them, the sun scorched rustic setting in southern Spain didn't seem like the right place to change this habit. I wanted an outfit befitting of such a major life changing event but I hadn't anticipated how hard it would be to achieve this without using trousers–I believe you call them pants! It was only after a great deal of dithering and some serious style guidance from Rommalee and Mat (one of my best hombres), that I decided on the the ivy league/preppy/boaty look. We found a couple of images on the internet and then spent the next couple of months desperately trying to re-create the look; it was as much through luck as judgment that this particular style gelled so well with Rommalee's dress...I do know that I wouldn't have enjoyed my wedding day half as much if I'd sold out and opted for more traditional attire.
W-G: What influenced your style choice most?
DY: I think the location and the climate were the main factors that contributed towards the decision to wear shorts but all of those things were considered. The same look would have been totally inappropriate for your average (more sedate) English wedding but it seemed like the obvious choice for an informal Spanish hilltop wedding in the height of summer. A traditional suit (or anything more substantial than shorts and shirt for that matter) would have rendered me a sweaty flustered mess and I was determined that my choice of outfit should add to my enjoyment of the day rather than compromise it. I don't imagine the vision of my skinny white chicken legs added to anybody else's enjoyment but it was my wedding day and the perfect opportunity for some selfish indulgence.
W-G: You also had custom boutonnieres for yourself, the groomsmen, and the fathers. Did you make them or did you have them made for you?
DY: The boutonnieres are the creation of a local creative genius called
DY: If we had chosen to get married in England, I'd have liked to wear a bow-tie and braces... I can confidently say that there's always something you can do to put your own stamp on a wedding. Whether it be through the clothing, the wording of the vows, the music for the first dance or whatever else you can think of, there's loads of opportunities throughout the day to add some of your own flavor. We spent a lot of time scouring various blogs...The internet is an amazing resource and I think with a little investigative work and a whole lot of patience, everyone can find something that suits.
W-G: As I mentioned earlier, you designed your wedding suite. Do you have any plans to release a line of wedding stationery or to create custom designs for interested couples?
DY: If I'd been left to my own devices, I'd have probably veered towards a more classic typography based design for our stationery but Rommalee was keen to have something softer and more fun for our wedding. I'm glad she stepped in because I think the final artwork really suited the occasion and it gave me the freedom to go to town on the illustrations and create something a bit more unique for the day. Despite it's lucrative possibilities, I don't have any grand plans to start specializing in wedding suites but I really enjoyed working on our own artwork and I'd happily consider any future inquiries for custom orders. I can be contacted through my website and will provide more details on request.
images via Eggs and Logs and Mister Phill