Tafadzwa Zimoyo Lifestyle Writer
There was a time when brides used to grab most of the attention at weddings, with all eyes always focused on them. This ranged from the wedding dress that they would wear, shoes, jewelry, in fact, everything about them was the subject of talk at the weddings which would remain etched in the minds of many for years to come.
Once the vows had been exchanged, the groom would be left on the periphery while they endured the bride’s day until they were needed for the photoshoots or to dance with the leading lady.
But now, the trend has changed and the groom has come into his own. Everything from apparel to hairstyle to seating arrangements now also brings the groom squarely into the picture.
And it goes beyond just the appearances. In the past, the groom normally left all the planning for the big day to the women, but times have since changed and grooms are taking time out to also plan for their own weddings.
From the number of guests, to the menu, from the venue to the vehicles transporting the bridal party, from the flowers to the photographer and everything in between, the modern groom is in the thick of things as he claims his wedding space.
Which makes sense because after all, in most cases he plays a considerable role in footing the bill. For unlike in most Western cultures where the father of the bride hosts the wedding, in Zimbabwe the wedding couple bear the burden themselves and if they are lucky they will get help from family and friends.
Grooms have become masters at wedding etiquette and they are gradually emerging out of the shell and are gaining more confidence when it comes to walking down the aisle. All this has been made thanks to the various grooming courses that are on offer these days, which have made it easy for men to pick what suits them and also how to conduct themselves before the crowd. Traditionally, men were known to be withdrawn and nervous during their wedding day but with counsellors who advise couples their wedding and professional wedding planners to take the pain out of the preparation, men are now finding it easy-going. Fewer and fewer cases are now reported of men who fumble, bungle and tumble as they make an effort to take the necessary steps down the aisle, all thanks to the proper grooming and naturally, they are stealing the show.
We take a look at some of the areas in which the groom is making his presence felt.
While in the past the attire that grooms often opted for on their wedding day was the traditional suit and bow-tie, the trend has also shifted as men are experimenting with novel fashion tastes that are in vogue. Men are learning from their celebrity idols and they are taking a leaf from them in as far as dressing is concerned. It is now the in-thing for grooms to first appear in a suit and then change into more artistic or ethnic dressing. These also go in line with the themes of the wedding and hence the introduction of colour themes. Tuxedos are getting more and more creative and many grooms are not afraid to be different.
Imagine someone who appears on his wedding day dressed in sandals. Anything goes these days, for as long as it is fashionable, trendy, expensive, or has a message that it is intended to send to the onlookers. But most grooms still opt for more classic footwear to gel with the formal look which remains a firm wedding favourite.
Wrist-watches, necklaces and spectacles, among other such trappings, also often make a statement and a man should invest in what makes the most of his looks. These symbols of “bling” also come supported by man’s best toys – classy cars that will turn heads at the wedding.
MUSIC AND DANCE
The boys at the wedding these days are sure to make it a must to entertain the guests when they choose their own music and then get down to some serious business on the dance floor. A live band, which is the favourite of the groom, can be hired to perform at the wedding, while the groom, together with his friends and bride, take time to dance too.
The phenomenon is also catching up in Zimbabwe and the groom and his friends throw a Bachelor’s Party whose aim is to bid farewell to the groom on his last night as a bachelor as he graduates into marriage.
The wedding cake must be some feminine concotion that reflects the woman’s wishes as this is her territory, right? Wrong. The groom can also have his cake and eat it too. It can be designed in his dream car or the colours of his favourite soccer club. A compromise cake could capture symbols that mean something to both groom and bride but one cardinal rule is to avoid overload on colour and design. Simple does it and less is definitely more.
We will keep you updated with the freshest trends for grooms every week. Please turn to Page L8 for pictures of this week’s grooms.