Groom Style

Real Grooms Share Wedding Planning Tips

We're over the "apathetic groom" stereotype. And after speaking to grooms across the country, we've discovered they clearly feel the same way. In fact, some are throwing themselves into honeymoon research, while others are putting their stamp on the creative details. (Did you hear that, mainstream wedding magazines?) Here's how a modern, enlightened fiancé gets involved—with any luck, your man may be inspired to lend a hand (or even take the reins).

Yes, he still does the traditional "guy" tasks…

Booking the band or DJ, selecting groomsmen attire, planning the honeymoon, and arranging transportation are still the groom's domain. We're not saying that most fiancés don't care about details like flowers and place settings; it's just that "traditional" groom duties tend to have more appeal. Why? "Because guys are going to stick with what they know best," says founder Mark Walerstein, of Gilbert, AZ. "But they're starting to delve deeper into these topics, by reading wedding blogs and doing a little research on their own." For example, Cory Schifter, of Staten Island, NY, researched recessional songs for his upcoming wedding ("I Gotta Feeling" by the Black Eyed Peas was the winner) and spent considerable time choosing gifts for his groomsmen (not a tie, not a flask, but custom–designed Nike sneakers the guys will wear at the reception). He also threw himself into planning his honeymoon getaway to a Mexican resort. "I'm friendly with my travel agent and enjoy vacation planning," Cory says. "And, honestly, between work, wedding planning, and buying a house, I'm looking forward to 10 days on the beach."

He's also delving into other aspects of the wedding...'s 2009 "Groom of the Year," Adam Moser, of New York City, got a kick out of selecting the décor for his reception. His wedding was held at a 19th–century train station that's been converted into a hotel. The former main terminal turned ballroom "had this elegant golden hue and architecture that transported you back in time," he says. "So we wanted to make sure that some of the details of the wedding, like the table settings, matched that style and didn't look too modern or out of place." (In the end, the couple went with gold linens and centerpieces of delicate calla lilies and blue hydrangeas, and illuminated the room with tea lights.) Andreas Unger, of Austin, TX, says he's also interested in the overall look and feel of his upcoming lakeside wedding. "I think nature will provide a pretty backdrop," he says. "There's no reason to mess too much with that, but you want it to be clean and elegant, too, not like, 'Hey, we're in Narnia!'" So instead of traditional, ornate décor, the couple is going with a chic black and white theme. Matthew Smith, of Yuma, AZ, is particularly jazzed about selecting favors. While the event is more than a year away, he already has a bunch of ideas. "We've discussed different options, like creating a cookbook of our favorite dishes to make together," he says. "We would definitely include our brie, pineapple, and crab flatbread pizza." And when his fiancée considered black dresses for the bridesmaids, Cory suggested that the color might be too somber for the tone of their wedding. Instead, they settled on fuchsia, which he then incorporated into the groomsmen attire. "Confident men wear pink," he says, "and my friends are definitely confident."

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