A morning dress is not one particular article of clothing; instead, it is a type of formal dress code for men. Morning dress is to be worn during the day as a more appropriate alternative to a tuxedo, and is often worn by grooms and groomsmen at weddings, as well as for those in attendance at prestigious events, or, in England, to royal events at Buckingham Palace. A morning suit is another type of slightly less formal morning attire.
Despite the name, morning dress attire is generally considered to be appropriate for events that take place before 5 or 6 p.m. It is not appropriate for any event after 6 p.m., when a tuxedo should be worn. There are a few articles of clothing that are generally worn when dressing in this style; the only colors used for this type of attire are generally black, cream, and/or dove gray.
The first is a cutaway morning coat. A morning coat is single breasted with peaked lapels and only one button. The front is cut away, and there are tails in the back. A white or pale shirt with a stiff detachable turndown collar is worn with the morning coat, as well as a waistcoat or vest. The waistcoat may be cream colored or dove gray, and may be double breasted or single breasted.
Trousers worn should be striped or checked, with a single pleat, and should generally be gray wool and worn with suspenders. Of course, a tie should be worn, and a handkerchief may be folded into a square and tucked into the pocket of the morning coat. Shoes should be black and polished. In addition, accessories worn with morning dress may include a top hat, cream colored or dove gray suede or chamois gloves, a cane, a pocket watch, or a boutonniere. Most of these accessories should only be considered for the most formal events.
A morning suit, where all pieces of the suit are solid gray, is a less formal version of this morning dress code, but it is very rarely worn anymore. An invitation to an event should specify the dress code; an evening version of morning dress attire is referred to as white tie attire. Searching for pictures of morning dress online is a good way to make sure one is dressing appropriately for the occasion; many websites specify even more rules for this extremely formal dress code.