How to outfit your handsome, but slender, husband in a tuxedo in less than 4,000 infuriating steps:

1. Look at a calendar and realize that Sir Fancy Pants has invites to two formal events in 2014.
2. Remember that the last time your husband wore a rented tux, it looked like this:

Wedding
Far right. Even though he is jumping in that photo, that’s where the sleeves hit him while at his sides.

3. Commence tux buying in late December for late February event. First option, order custom from Indochino, the same place he purchased his wedding suit.
4. While trying to decide the correct lapel type and other jacket details from the Indochino website, read Put This On’s Black Tie Guide. Take their recommendation and order the Tommy Hilfiger slim fit tuxedo from Macy’s with peak lapels. It’s worth giving it a shot at that price.
5. It arrives and the pants fit great! The jacket is a little less than desirable but serviceable for the occasion.
6. Macy’s discounts the price of the jacket by about $30. Re-order it, plus the notched lapel to see if that looks better.
7. In the meantime, order a custom tuxedo shirt from Indochino.
8. Purchase a cummerbund and self-tie bowtie set from Geoffrey Lewis near my office.
9. Realize that the shoes purchased at the same time as the first Macy’s tuxedo have not arrived even though UPS said they were delivered to our door.
10. Lose it about the shoes, but calmly place an online inquiry as to the package’s whereabouts with UPS and write a note for the UPS man about it AND chat with him about it.
11. The Indochino shirt arrives, and it is a disaster. The sleeves are too short.
12. Panic, because Indochino has never failed before so now where can we order a custom tuxedo and shirt from?
13. Send Indochino an e-mail with copious photos of the subpar tuxedo shirt.
14. Return the Macy’s double order, keeping the pants that still fit great and the not so great jacket. Something is better than nothing.
15. Forget about this for a few days. Regain strength to finish.
16. Call Macy’s, which is a labyrinth of phone menu options that necessitate various hangups and redials after hitting deadends, and ask for another pair of shoes. Have the shoes shipped to your office this time.
17. Go on a mini-date day in Georgetown with you husband and swing by J. Crew. Try on their Ludlow tuxedo. Even though it is $300+ more than you wanted to spend, ignore that and buy the J. Crew tux online, so you can use Ebates.
19. Don’t like any of the tuxedo shirt options in the J. Crew store.
20. Buy a tuexdo shirt and another bowtie from Charles Tyrwhyt. (Plus a dress shirt that was on sale for him to wear to work!)
21. Hear back from Indchino, who offers to remake the shirt. Tell them thanks, but no thanks, we would like to return the shirt for a refund. Mail the shirt to Canada.
22. J. Crew tuxedo arrives. Angels sing.
23. Charles Tyrwhit tuxedo shirt is too big under the J. Crew tuxedo.
24. Order two more options from J.Crew.com that are not in stores.
25. Second set of shoes are not delivered to your office because of some sort of label failure. Husband calls to sort that out with UPS.
26. On Saturday morning, wake up to find the ORIGINAL pair of shoes at your apartment doorstep. Do not question this.
27. Be awoken on MLK Day at 10am by your UPS man, Ben, knocking on the door to say “Yes, I delivered the shoes to the wrong apartment weeks ago.” Fill out some UPS paperwork.
28. Decide that a cummerbund is not the way to go and return the set for a pair of formal suspenders.
29. Second set of Macy’s shoes are delivered to your office. Lose it again while trying to figure out how to return the extra pair to Macy’s.
30. Husband returns the original Macy’s tux and the extra pair of shoes.
31. Go back to Geoffrey Lewis to have a custom tuxedo shirt made. Have them also mark the J. Crew tux for alterations, but take the tux to J. Crew for alterations since J. Crew card holders get free alterations.
32. Go to J. Crew to drop off the tux for alterations, only to have the hipster manager wearing a shawl collar sweater seem inconvenienced by your desire to have their clothing fit properly. Listen to his spiel on not taking advantage of the FREE ALTERATIONS. Contemplate shoving that shawl collar up his ass. Or just writing an e-mail to Mickey Drexler like everyone else.
33. Take J. Crew tux back to Geoffrey Lewis for alterations and button swapping, because of course the buttons on the J. Crew pants are not the right shape for the suspender button holes.
34. Return Charles Tyrwhytt shirt.
35. Receive a refund credit for Indochino shirt.
36. Check in with Geoffrey Lewis about delivery of custom tuxedo shirt. ETA is now Tuesday before the Friday event . . . an event that is in Houston, not Washington, DC.
37. Laugh and resist returning the other $200 worth of tuxedo shirts to J. Crew. Gotta have a Plan Z.
38. Receive an e-mail from Macy’s asking why you returned the shoes that were sent to you twice. Shake fist.
39. Geoffrey Lewis shirt arrives on Wednesday before the Friday event. Josh leaves work early, on a day he really can’t leave work early, and tries on both the shirt and tuxedo. They look great. Angels sing Handel’s Hallelujah chorus.
40. The new tuxedo shirt needs laundered, professionally, before the event because they build in 1/16 inch of room in the collar area that shrinks during the first wash.
41. Josh takes the shirt to be laundered before running to get his eyes dilated, because we are awesome at scheduling our lives.
42. Take Thursday off of work to prepare for the trip (and see Robin Thicke). Run by the cleaners to pick up the shirt after getting nails done.
43. Pack more luggage than for our European trip, grab a cab at 5am on less than 4 hours, and head to Houston for less than 30 hours.

At about 8pm on the night of the event, we looked a little something like this:

Clean up nicely

44. Return the extra J. Crew shirts.
45. Tell Macy’s that, yes, they do need to charge you for the price of one pair of shoes. That would be great!

Consider yourselves lucky I didn’t outline my process in finding a dress.

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