As we barrel head-first into prom season, ladies are looking for the perfect dress online and in every boutique they pass. So much planning goes into every part of their ensemble for the big event! Entire industries focus on ladies’ formal attire needs, but too often men’s options for formal wear are neglected in special occasion planning. We immediately think of the basic black tuxedo, complete with the standard black bow tie and cummerbund when someone mentions men’s formal wear, and while that’s a great option, many men want options to show their individual tastes when it comes to dressing to impress. Many are left wondering how to rent the perfect tux and where they can find the place that will best help them look like a million bucks.
Here are some tips on accomplishing this sometimes daunting feat:
1) Decide Whether to Rent or Buy-– Is this a tuxedo you will want to wear again? Will you need to wear a tuxedo multiple times over the next few years? If so, buying could be the right decision for you, but if not, then renting is suggested. Plus, it renting gives you the option to grow and change your look up next time!
When we were invited to a Mardi Gras Ball a few weeks ago, my husband’s basic black tux didn’t fit the dress code for the occasion. Our Ball invitation said Costume de rigueur (swanky French code for floor length gowns for the ladies and “full dress” or “white tie” for men), which meant that we needed to obtain the correct tuxedo and accessories for him elsewhere. Obviously we only wanted to rent his outfit for the ball rather than buy it because “full dress” events are far and few between for us.
Enter Jim Massey Formals.
2) How Long Will It Take?- Ask the formals rental businesses you’re interested in using about their turn around time. This is very helpful to know if an item doesn’t fit right or if a piece of your outfit was left out of the order. arrives If you are fortunate enough to be dealing with a local formals rental company, they may even be able to help you much closer to the event date if their rentals are warehoused nearby.
Because dealing with four kids makes my brain smushy the fact that he needed to rent his tux was forgotten until the week of the ball. I began looking for online tuxedo rental companies, thinking they could get it to me faster than a local store.
I panicked when I realized that online tux rental companies couldn’t get it to us in time so I decided to call Jim Massey Formals, aka the place my high school prom dates used for tuxedo rentals, and they saved the day for us! The fantastic manager one of their four local Formalwear stores told us to come in that evening (Thursday) or the next morning (Friday) to ensure it was ready to pick up the day of the ball (Saturday). Local businesses ROCK.
3) Get Up Close and Personal- By actually going into the store and seeing the material varieties and style options first hand you will be able to make a more informed decision on your rental choice. It’s great to get ideas ahead of time from magazines or the Internet, too. That way the Tux experts will be able to help you achieve the look you’ve envisioned. Talk to your date ahead of time about what she will be wearing, and get a swatch of her dress fabric or a picture that accurately shows its color if you are wanting to match! There are MANY shades of pink, guys, and it’s really helpful to your Tux expert if you have something for them to see. But remember, this is ALSO your event. Being bold in your choices can be just as fun as the traditional tux you chose last year.
When we arrived at the Formalwear store, the amount of fashion options available for customers NOT confined to a specific dress code (sorry, Hubby) truly impressed me, and they were presented in such a way that those looking for great style ideas would be inspired in making their decision.
4) Have a Professional Take Your Measurements– I repeat HAVE A PROFESSIONAL TAKE YOUR MEASUREMENTS. Getting fitted properly can help to keep the day of your event a little less frustrating, and ensure you’re getting the right thing the first time. You may *THINK* you need a size 40 jacket, but the tape measure and someone who knows how to use it don’t lie.
5) Ask LOTS of Questions- Figuring out how to rent the perfect tux on your own can be difficult! In talking to a Tux Expert at Jim Massey Formals, she had this to say, “A lot of guys who have never rented before come in and don’t really know the process or don’t really know what things are called, and we WANT them to ask us! We’re here to help educate them because more than likely, this won’t be the only time they rent a tuxedo, and we love what we do. We don’t mind!” See? Schoolhouse Rocks was RIGHT! Knowledge is Power, and taking the chance to learn all you can could really help you in the future.
6) Try on Your Rental When You Pick It Up– I just saw a collective eyeroll from all men in the universe. Yes, you will be putting it on again for the event, and we know you hate getting all girded up more than you have to, but trust me, (and Katie the Jim Massey Tux Expert) you’ll be glad that you did if for some reason your pants are a bit high-water or something’s uncomfortable.
It was a pleasure to work with Jim Massey, and I appreciate them comping our tux rental in exchange for this review and the great knowledge they shared with me for all of you! All Opinions are my own, and I wouldn’t steer you wrong! I highly suggest you use them in you are in the Central Alabama area.