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Dear Tuxedo Manufacturers,

For so long you have been the staple of men’s formal wear.  As the bread and butter of the industry, you played it safe in this economic downturn and saw no need for innovation with your fashions, marketing, and business strategies.

From blogspot.comInstead, you relied on societal traditions to bring forth desperate grooms, prom dates, and other customers in need of tuxedos, despite the old and outdated selections they encountered.

Yet your complacency is catching up with you.  You’re no longer the bread and butter; you’re becoming a moldy old loaf in danger of being tossed out.  You face becoming not only unneeded, but unwanted.

With no new styles and no new merchandise, you are being replaced.  While girls still covet the latest trends in formal dresses, guys now opt for a more casual and stylish approach. As Alex P., a high school Senior from California, put it, “Tuxedos are boring.  I prefer the look from my own closet – black jeans, cool looking shirt, tie and black jacket – the perfect ‘tuxedo’.”

We hope you take this criticism as constructive because that is its intention.  We are not trying to beat you down.  We are merely attempting to motivate you because barring some Christmas miracle, it is up to you to save your withering industry.

We consumers still feel that nothing is more handsome than a man in a tuxedo, but only when it is modern and stylish.  Please listen to the needs of your changing consumers and adapt to the new market and new economy.  Try responding to our preferences with a new ‘casual’ tuxedo.  Partner with hip designers such as Vans, Zoo York, and Quicksilver.  And most importantly, provide retailers with high quality, visually stimulating images for advertising.

Please take these suggestions to heart because the status quo just won’t do. We can get along without you, but we’d hate to see you go.

Sincerely,

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Note: This letter was prompted by the discovery that tuxedo manufacturers are releasing no new styles and trying no new business strategies for 2010, even though many face closings, mergers, and acquisitions. If you would like answers from an industry expert, please contact Paul Pannone from 1800MyTuxes.com.

 

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6 Comments

  1. Great post. Most of the guys in my highschool don’t wear tuxes to events. They don’t fit them right since it seems they aren’t tailored for individuals but made so that they can make adjustments quickly without consideration for different bodyshapes. I think a guy in a tux looks great… but it has to fit nicely.

  2. As a guy I couldn’t agree more with the article and with the post above. I’d rather wear a comfy pair of slacks, dress shirt, and jacket than a tux. I wore a tux to prom last year and even though I was ‘fitted’ for it it didn’t fit right at all, looked like it was old, and just didn’t look very ‘in’. I complained with the tux company about the look and they just said it was ‘formal’ and was supposed to be that way. I disagree, a tux could easily be spiced up a bit and made to look more modern yet still look formal and classy. This year I’ll stick with my own attire for prom.

  3. I was at a black tie even a little while back for the industry I work in, and interestingly enough, even with a large majority of older men attending, the norm was a nice black suit, not a tuxedo. Personally, I like the look of a tux. Ascots and tuxes need to be revived.

  4. Please visit http://www.jeanyvesprom.com and http://www.jeanyvespreview.com

    Tell me what you think. I am certain you will feel this is fresh and exciting.

    MS

  5. Great posting and website Queen Bee! I have to agree with much of what you have said. Tuxedo styles have been in “safe” mode again for the last 5 years.

    Some manufacturers went out on a limb some years ago and brought in designs from Marc Ecko and others, even going so far as to photograph their model wearing the Ecko design formal trousers and patent leather sneakers and no shirt! It created quite a stir and was heralded by many as the “future” of tuxedos!

    Soon after, brightly colored tuxedos and shirts began flooding the market. These looks were purchased by tuxedo rental operators, hoping to provide the look that their customers were going to be clamoring for. Few clamored and these looks now reside in backrooms and thrift stores across the country.

    In our store we strive to help our prom customers to create a unique and exciting look for their event. With so many vest and tie colors and patterns available, even a classic tuxedo can look fresh and new! Stripes, polka dots, paisleys and even animal prints!

    The industry is certainly not perfect, but there are suppliers out there, like Maurice Silva and the folks with the Jean Yves design team that create exciting looks and outstanding images! John Galante of After Six has designed a line of “Contemporary Classics” that blend classic lines with trimmer fit, narrower stylish lapels and softer shoulders. Younger looks for a younger clientele.

    Don’t give up on us! Thanks Jen!

  6. The tuxedo are the most boring costume in the history of fashion. They’re the reason menwear is always a minor footnote in any red carpet fashion review. “The classic tux looks sharp and stylish!” its defenders would cry. But if it looks so great why doesn’t anyone care what the men wear to the Oscars? How can something be both good AND boring? It doesn’t make sense!

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