It’s Tuxedo Time
You’re a guy.
You’re getting married.
Your role is simple.
You are a wardrobe accessory.
Your job could not be easier. It is:
– Show up.
– On time.
– Well-dressed in the appointed attire.
– Answer all questions from clergy in the affirmative.
And just like that, you’re married.
Joe Russo of A Breck Tux and A Vail Tux has been in the formalwear business since birth. His grandfather and father were both in the men’s wear and tuxedo business. In that time, he has seen guys go to some really silly extremes trying to establish new rules and styles.
The old rules, he says, still work.
“Stick to them,” he says.
Russo is quick to point out that the Aspen scenes in that cinematic classic “Dumb and Dumber” were actually filmed in Breckenridge. In some scenes you can see his shop.
Somewhere in his shop you’ll find a powder blue tux, just like the ones worn in “Dumb and Dumber.” Occasionally, he says, some guy with no will to live wanders in and tries to rent it for his wedding.
Russo, at these times, finds himself in the suicide/homicide prevention business. He does not rent it.
Joe Russo has a good heart.
“The current style is to stay black,” he said.
Fabrics are moving into a finer blend of wool; lighter, stronger and carrying the names of Calvin Klein and Ralph Lauren.
No powder blue and no ruffles, at least not yet.
“Somday maybe our kids will wear ruffles.”
Non-pleated pants are back for the first time since the Reagan administration.
Back in the last millennium, everything was a cummerbund. Russo’s shop boasted 150 colors, including 12 shades of blue ” all of them ugly.
“Most people don’t even know how to wear them,” he said. “Everything is now vests. It’s much easier.”
Neckwear is a matter of taste, he says. The foreign hand tie, or Euro Tie is always popular, although more than half his tuxes go out the door with the traditional bow tie.
“We’ve had some western suits and zoot suits go out, but not many. There’s more interest in western tuxes here than back east,” said Russo, a Boston native. “On the other hand, out here we don’t get many calls for the guido suits. Zoot suits are becoming more popular. Not everyone can wear them because they’re reallly flashy.”
– The white tie and white vest MUST match the bride’s gown.
“The groom’s shirt is more important than people think,” said Russo. “If she has an off-white or ivory dress, their shirts have to be the same shade. If they have white shirts, her dress looks filthy in the pictures. I have actually re-dressed grooms for their pictures.”
While Russo is in the happily-ever-after profession, he has lost his share of business from bad behavior.
Like the time the groom’s friends got him loaded and put him on a plane. He missed his wedding.
Another group got arrested during their bachelor party. They decided they were all entitled to a phone call, so they ordered pizza. When it came, the police paid for it and ate it front of them.
The saddest of all, though, was a huge wedding with a dozen suits going out.
“Everyone picked theirs up except the groom,” he said.
His favorite holiday? February 29 – Sadie Hawkins Day, popularized in the comic strip Li’L Abner, during which women ask men to marry them.
– A Breck Tux, Breckenridge, 970-453-2745
– Vail Tux, 970-748-1133
– Luxury Tuxedoes of Vail, 970-479-1727
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