Ask Abby
April 9, 2008

Today I thought we could tackle some Dear Abby questions that have been piling up in my inbox! I would love your help with these, as I know that so many of you out there have great ideas and creative solutions.

The first round of questions is from Sharon...

Q: I am getting married at South Seas resort, Captiva Island in October. My fiancé really wanted to wear a khaki suit so he is wearing the jcrew wheat chino suit, and the girls are wearing the chocolate brown silk taffeta tea length dresses, all different styles.

My issue is, the guys can’t afford the full suit and want to wear the dress pants. What would coordinate with these dress pants for a wedding? Also, do they need ties to look pulled together?? And what colors can I pop off the chocolate brown to keep a beach chic vibe?

My linens will be white, and my chairs are white as well and the ceremony is on the lawn overlooking the water, with the reception inside the main dining room, very casual but still chic feel. I have a very minimal budget as we are spending most of our money on the food, but I love organic chic designs and I am having a hard time pulling it all together. My dress is a natural color strapless sweetheart silk duppioni mermaid style with a chapel train and no embellishments beyond a ribbon and bow detail under the bust and covered buttons. I was thinking brown, cream, white and green with pops of raspberry and pink? Is that all over the place?

Any ideas for either the men's attire or the color palette that would help Sharon envision her perfect day? I'd love to hear your input, then I will post my ideas at the end of the day!

A. First of all, thank you all so much for your ideas...I think that we are all envisioning the same beach/chic kind of look. Sharon, my first thought is to embrace the palette that you are already thinking about...khaki, chocolate and touches of raspberry. I love that you have found inspiration in J Crew's preppy chic style, so I think that you should look there when defining your palette...


Suit and chocolate dress by J Crew, Tie by Thomas Pink, Bouquet by Modern Day Design

For the boys, I agree with the no tie route...just the khaki slacks, a crisp white button down and a fun, playful belt with touches of pink. Very beach chic. If the girls carry a deep pink or raspberry inspired bouquet and the groom dons a pink/raspberry tie, the whole look will seem completely cohesive and stylish.

I also really love the idea of using peaches and corals, as some of our readers mentioned. Peaches pair beautifully with raspberry so you really could marry the two ideas. Regardless, I think that you should continue looking to J Crew for inspiration...scour their catalog, their website and their stores. The cheerful new look of their line is just perfect for your beach chic vibe.

As a side note, one of the comments for this Dear Abby question came from Tiffany (Tipperella), who recently had her groomsmen wear similar khaki attire. She offered a picture of her boys so I thought I would share! It's also a lovely solution to this question!!


SO, SO pretty! Thanks so much for sharing Tiffany!