Wedding season is upon us. On behalf of those who are invited to a few, have official duties to perform, or are about to get married themselves, we asked Greta Kenyon for tips.

Kenyon launched wedding magazine Together Journal about this time last year. It’s already being stocked in Barnes & Noble stores across America and its sixth issue will arrive next month.

Together Journal is your straight-talking best friend of wedding magazines. As well as modern, relevant fashion spreads shot around New Zealand and product pages full of good ideas, the heart of the magazine is devoted to real weddings to have a nosy at, about 10-12 in each issue. There are gorgeous, expensive weddings and charmingly low-key weddings. There are gay weddings, elopements, older couples, racially diverse couples, and couples from all around the world.

All of the weddings featured look good, but because they’re real, if you see an idea you like in Together Journal, you can be sure that it can actually be achieved in real life.

We asked Kenyon, who’s shot hundreds of weddings, for any tips she can share.

1972: Have weddings been changing?

GK: I think it’s all changing. Weddings are definitely becoming more reflective of the couple, and less traditional. I think even 10 years ago you were expected to adhere to quite a few traditions but now I think it’s pretty acceptable to break with tradition.

1972: It seems like people are making more of an effort to individualise or personalise things…

GK: Yes. Perhaps they don’t like the idea of being part of a machine that churns out wedding after wedding after wedding every week, so couples will approach their favourite restaurant or cafe to see if they can have their wedding there on the day they’re shut. Or they might approach a farmer about putting a tent in his paddock or using his hay shed. They’ll try to find more unusual places, places that have never really had a wedding there before.

1972: Are dress codes getting more casual?

GK: I think it’s going both ways. If a guy wears a suit to work — and I shoot a lot of guys who work in banking, marketing or law — they tend to want to wear something completely different and special. I’m seeing a lot more tuxedos.

But I’m also seeing guys getting married without a tie, maybe just in a patterned, open-necked shirt. People are more open to not wearing a jacket at a beach wedding, whereas in the past they probably would have just worn a suit and sweated it out.

If you’re getting married on a boat or in a barn or on a beach, it’s okay not to wear a jacket. You suit your venue.

1972: Any styling tips from your gents section?

GK: If you can afford it, you might want to consider getting two shirts, especially if it’s a hot, sunny outdoor wedding, and lots of guys sweat when they get nervous. I’ve noticed, taking photos.

Don’t go getting a haircut the week before. Heaps of guys do, and then they don’t like their hair and are mucking about with it all day. Go to your normal hairdresser about three weeks before.

1972: Are there any styling touches you particularly like?

GK: I’ve noticed some really beautiful accessories. Instead of a button hole, there are all these beautiful, almost jewellery-like accessories that they can keep. At Mimi Gilmour’s wedding, the best men all had beautiful tie pins.
A nice pocket square is dual purpose, because most guys get a little teary — for instance, if it’s windy and they get dust in their eye. So, fashion and function.

1972: What would you tell anyone starting to plan a wedding?

GK: Remember what it’s actually about and don’t be too swayed by people’s advice. Do what you and your partner want to do.
Also, you need to book your venue first, because you can’t really do anything else until your date’s secured. The location comes first, then the date, and then you can decide the look and feel.

1972: You often feature stag party ideas. What would you want for your own stag party?

GK: I’d want to get out of town, so if they did anything embarrassing to me, it would be somewhere where nobody knows me.