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  • Weddings. They tend to happen around this time of year.

    Something about love being in the air ... or maybe that’s pollen.

    Regardless, you’ve been invited. And regardless of your age or marital status, you’ll need to dress well. Drink well. Speak with dignity and grace.

    And that’s where this comes in: The Gentleman’s Handbook, Volume III: Weddings.

    Inside:

    • What to Wear This Season

    • How to Make a Toast

    • How to Give a Damn Good Gift

    • And Acceptable Dance Songs That Aren’t the Electric Slide

    Plus much more, including our advice regarding that all-important query: Must I go to this wedding in the first place?

    Enjoy. We’ll see you on the dance floor,

    Your friends at InsideHook

  • All wedding attire is not created equal

    What to Wear

    … to the Beach Wedding

    Linen suit by Brooks Brothers, $698
    Espadrilles by Alice & Whittles, $85
    Floral button down by Polo Ralph Lauren, $125

    ...to the Country Club Wedding

    Madras sport coat by Polo Ralph Lauren, $350
    Cotton khaki trousers by Alton Lane, $225
    Glossy weejuns by G.H. Bass & Co., $108
    Black knit tie by Hugo Boss, $95

    ...to the Formal Wedding

    Midnight blue tuxedo by Burberry London, $2,295
    Wholecut oxford by Barker Black, $950
    Day of the Dead cufflinks by King Baby Studio, $435

    ...to the Municipal Building Wedding

    Charcoal grey suit by J. Crew, $600
    Pink gingham shirt by Emma Willis, $375
    Floral bowtie by The Tie Bar, $15

  • A what-to-expect guide

    The Wedding Cheat Sheet

    The WASP Wedding

    Conservative dress. Bonus for seersucker and bowties. Flasks OK. Keep an ear out for hot stock tips. Dance with granny.

    The Indian Wedding

    Wear a colorful suit. Expect delicious food. Wear comfy shoes. Dancing is a must. Groom may ride in on an elephant.

    The Same-Sex Wedding

    Typically mixed seating. Take your dress cues from the couple. Respect and approval. No Chick-fil-A jokes.

    The Vegas Wedding

    Normal rules do not apply. Do not Instagram anything. Pick up annulment paperwork on the way out. Tip Elvis.

  • Rings. Speech. Bachelor party.

    The Duties of the Best Man

    Plan bachelor party.

    Arrange accommodations for groomsmen.

    Manage the rowdy ones.

    Keep a handkerchief nearby.

    And a black pen. And mints. And cash.

    Get the groom to ceremony.

    Stand beside groom at ceremony.

    Escort Maid of Honor down the aisle.

    Deliver drinks to anyone who asks. Mainly the groom.

    Keep the damn rings safe.

    Sign marriage license as witness.

    Give the officiant an envelope with their fee after the ceremony.

    Make a toast. Keep it short.

    Dance with everyone.

    Collect gift envelopes.

  • Rule no. 1: Look the part

    The Duties of the Groomsman

    Make sure your tux still fits.

    Attend engagement party. Attend bachelor party. Attend rehearsal dinner.

    Listen to the Best Man.

    Keep the beer cold.

    Attend to the families.

    Usher.

    Remain aware. (“The bathroom? Over there.”)

    Escort the bridesmaids down the aisle.

    Yes, you still have to buy a wedding gift.

  • Ladies and gentlemen ...

    How to Not Suck at Toasts

    Raz during a rehearsal dinner speech? Yes.

    Raz during the wedding speech? No.

    Drink just enough to steel yourself.

    Thank the bride’s family.

    No long stories about your formative years.

    Do not mention former flames of either party.

    Rule of three: two normal comments followed by an outlandish comment gets a laugh every time.

    Lead with funny.

    Close with heartfelt.

    Be quick about it.

    Try to follow someone who has ignored one or more of these rules.

  • Your new best friend

    How to Tip a Bartender

    Most popular man at the wedding: the groom.

    Close second: the man behind the pine.

    Make friends early.

    Shoot the bull during cocktail hour before he’s swamped.

    Commit his name to memory.

    First tip: Jackson or better.

    Drop him singles each round thereafter.

  • Scotchy Scotch Scotch

    How to Drink Effectively

    Easy on the pre-ceremony champagne — you haven’t eaten yet.

    One reception cocktail before dinner starts. Make your rounds.

    Wine with dinner. Eat the dinner.

    Post-dinner: Scotch. Tough to overdo. Earns nod of approval from the wedding’s old guard.

    Invariably, someone will suggest shots. Avoid this man.

    Keep an eye out for your “rhythm drink” — the one after which you say to yourself “You know what? I AM a good dancer!” This signals your zenith. All downhill from here.

    Watch the FOTB closely – when HE’S the one suggesting shots, all bets are officially off. Feel free to take one.

    When in doubt: “To the happy couple!” when raising your glass.

    Bloody Mary in the morning.

  • One left foot, sir

    How to Dance Properly

    One slow dance with your date. That’s the absolute minimum.

    Dance with mom. Dance with granny.

    The Charleston is funny for a second. All songs are longer than a second.

    Match your partner's energy.

    Alcohol intake is not directly proportional to dancing acumen. It's not inversely proportional, either. It's more of a parabola. Ride the crest.

    When in doubt, remember Gertrude: You look ridiculous if you dance, you look ridiculous if you don’t dance. So you might as well dance.

  • What to request

    Good Dance Songs That Aren't the Electric Slide

    Nobody’s going to ask your opinion on this. But in case they do:

    Ignition (Remix) - R. Kelly
    Bizarre Love Triangle - New Order
    Shout - The Isley Brothers
    The Way You Move - Outkast
    Sexual Healing - Marvin Gaye
    You Make My Dreams - Hall and Oates
    Brick House - The Commodores
    Gett Off - Prince
    One More Time - Daft Punk
    Poison - Bell Biv DeVoe

    Listen to the lot of 'em on our Spotify playlist

  • You: 1. Registry: 0.

    How to Give a Damn Good Gift

    As with all gifts, consider the people being gifted.

    When in doubt: gift registry. Hurry before the best gifts are picked through.

    But you’re better than the gift registry.

    Co-worker? $100-worth is good. You have to see this person every day.

    Cousin? $125’ll do it.

    Close family? How much money you got?

    Technically, you can wait up to a year to give a gift. But don’t.

    Wait a few weeks after the wedding. Mail your gift. It’ll stand out.

    Cash is always welcome.

    Invited but not attending? You’re still on the hook for a gift.

  • Where's the bar?

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Should I go if I've slept with the bride-to-be?
    How recently we talking here? If you were personally invited, you’ve already been cleared (unless, to borrow Admiral Akbar, "It’s a trap!"). But if you’re somebody’s date, ask your ladyfriend whether she told the bride you were coming. No drama? You’re clear.

    Can I make a toast if I'm not the best man? 
    Ask the best man.

    How can I avoid small talk?
    You can’t. But try the Socratic method. Q: How’s New York? A: How do you think it is?

    When can I go home?
    Dessert.

    Where’s the after-party?
    Ask the drunkest groomsman.

    Can I jump into the pool?
    Yes?