@BrandNewBride: He likely didn’t chiecken out, he likely realized how difficult it is to obtain a proper top hat that does not look like garbage.
@SparkleBaby: Top hats are worn with Morning Coat, Morning Suit, and White Tie. That’s it. The only correct hat to go with a Tuxedo is the black, or midnight blue, Homburg. Hats are not normally worn indoors, but can in a vastly open space – basically if it’s larger than an Olympic swimming pool, you are fine to wear a hat. At least that is my general rule of thumb. Hats are notworn in a Church, and in keeping with that tradition, would be inappropriate during the ceremony, so should be carried under the arm. Hats are not worn in formal photographs.
The top hats you rent are not real hats, but extremely cheap costume pieces; they are plastic fuzz on a plastic shell and are not real clothing. Silly details like monocles are also costumish. Walking sticks were de rigeur with Morning Dress in the 20’s, but now they do look a bit costumish as well. A tightly rolled umbrella is the contemporary adaptation.
The preferred Top Hat is silk plush, and the second choice is fur melsuline in black, or fur felt in grey. If they are wearing morning dress, one can get away with a wool felt grey top hat, but the black wool ones really don’t do the job, and aren’t worth the bother, imo.
For fur hats, try http://www.clermontdirect.com – they have a reasonable price. Silk hats have not been made 30 years or so, making vintage the only option. Try eBay, and tophats.eu – try various countries’ eBay sites.
Read http://www.morningdressguide.com and andrewsandpygott.wordpress.com for morning dress, as well as the Morning Dress section of the Black Tie Guide.
Google “Morning Dress” and look at pictures of the Royal Family. For information on White Tie, lok at the White Tie section of http://www.blacktieguide.com Here are a couple of samples from my wedding, and you can see the rest of our pictures here:
Tuxedos with Homburgs: