In a time pickle.... Tuxedo alternative?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Superfluous, Feb 3, 2013.

  1. Superfluous

    Superfluous Senior member

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    I was just notified that I'm going to a "ball" in a couple of weeks but I don't own a tuxedo. I'd prefer to find a nice tuxedo on sale, however, as a 38L, I will not be able to find one. Very few nice brands that I could find off the rack will fit me (Ralph Lauren Black Label and Purple Label), but at retail prices of $2300+ and $4000+, they are much higher than what I'd like to spend on a tuxedo that I'd very rarely wear. I don't have enough time to have one made for me either, so that is out of the question. I will not be renting either. In the end, I don't care that much about what I'm wearing to this ball to the point of spending a ton of money, but I'd like to do something appropriate.


    That being said, there are only two somewhat viable options in my current wardrobe that I think could possibly pass:

    A. Midnight navy, notch lapel suit with roped shoulders (inspired by Vox's post about formal wear here: Vox Link)


    B. Black velvet, notch lapel sport coat with roped shoulders paired with a dark grey/charcoal flannel trousers. Unfortunately, this is also notch lapel, but it's what I have to work with.

    I'm thinking something similar to this but with black instead of navy, better sleeve length, and better pant length:

    [​IMG]


    With both of these, I plan to at least wear a black grosgrain bow-tie and white shirt. I don't like french cuffs, so I don't even own any white french cuff shirts, let alone a tuxedo appropriate shirt. Should I buy one? Are the studs necessary? Cummerbund as well? What's my best route to take with all of this?
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2013


  2. GBR

    GBR Senior member

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  3. Superfluous

    Superfluous Senior member

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    I won't be renting.
     


  4. Master Squirrel

    Master Squirrel Senior member

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    If you won't rent, decline the invitation.

    People at the ball will notice that you are not dressed correctly. And if you are being invited to formal balls, you need to own a proper tuxedo.
     


  5. mafoofan

    mafoofan THE FOO Dubiously Honored

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    Buy something cheap, say from Jos. A. Bank, and take it to an alterations tailor.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2013


  6. Superfluous

    Superfluous Senior member

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    I think you're exaggerating. And I'm a guest to my girlfriend who is attending, so I don't think I'll be invited to too many. Who knows though. Hopefully if I do, I have time to have one made for me.



    I'd rather spend $2000+ on a RL Black Label tux than buy a Joseph Bank suit.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2013


  7. inimitable

    inimitable Senior member

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  8. HomerJ

    HomerJ Senior member

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    So...


    You won't buy an expensive tuxedo.
    But you won't rent.
    And you won't buy a cheap tuxedo.

    Just stay home.
     




  9. New Shoes1

    New Shoes1 Senior member

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    +1. So, you basically just started this thread in order for everyone to validate your idea to mix and match the contents of your closet.
     


  10. Superfluous

    Superfluous Senior member

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    I thought about this, but the measurements seemed large and also short. I'd rather not half-ass it if I'm going to spend $500+.




    This is actually an intriguing option, thanks. I don't have experience with gieves and hawkes, any commentary?



    No one seems to want to address either of the options in my current wardrobe I think may work. Any comments on the two options?
     


  11. GothamRed

    GothamRed Senior member

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    G&H is good quality and, for the price, I think that is a great option.
     


  12. nickrut

    nickrut Senior member

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    You could probably pull off a black suit with a tuxedo shirt.
     


  13. Huntsman

    Huntsman Senior member

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    Well, to answer your questions: Neither seems a good option, though #1 is infintely better than #2. However, that is tempered with the reality that there are 'balls' and then there are balls (can't believe I just said that). I've been to balls where I was the only person in a dinner jacket and balls where I was decidedly not the best dressed. So some guidance there would help, for in the former situation you could get away with anything, whereas in the latter you might feel a bit like a rube, or at least out of place. Nothing worse, in my book, than going out with a beautifully attired woman while looking like a schlub.

    If I had to wear a non-tux tux to a ball, I'd wear a black peak lapel suit with the rest of the accoutrement, but I'd only do so if few would know the difference.

    Like everything else, its a matter of appropriateness.

    That said, I 'd totally scour eBay; I had to get a 2nd DJ when mine was out being relined, and I scored a nice Edward Sexton. I like G&H,though I find it rather lighter than midnight.

    ~H
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2013


  14. Hayward

    Hayward Senior member

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    Something that doesn't fit you well will look worse than not wearing black tie.

    I'd go with the midnight blue, especially if it's a good mohair. White shirt, Black grenadine four in hand tie. Oscar outfit. I'd think you'd be able to get away with it especially if you're young.
     


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