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Prom Time

 It’s prom time at Tony’s.  Everyone knows I love prom time, some might even say I am an expert about prom.  Maybe it is the 16 proms I attended in my younger days or maybe the 31 years of prom tuxedos I have rented to the teens of Northeast Texas.  Either way I would like to share a few tips to create the perfect Prom Night!


Create your special night…

For many guys, prom is the very first time you will be on a formal date.  Notice I said “formal” date.  A date to any school dance is a little more involved than a casual date that consists of pizza, a movie or a ballgame.  There’s a bit more effort that goes into a prom date planning, and you’ll have to plan at least a few weeks in advance.  But don’t worry, all the planning is definitely worth it.  Prom is often on of the most memorable night of your high school years.

When it comes to prom, there are generally two groups of people: those that think “Prom is awesome! I’m really excited to go and those that say, “Prom is sooo lame. What a waste of time.”

Really, both groups are right. Prom can be a fun and memorable night, or it can be a big letdown. The difference doesn’t come from prom itself, but what you make of it.  Special nights don’t just happen– TONY’S helps you create them.

I have put together my personal and business experiences about prom to guide you through a great PROM NIGHT!

#1 Ask the girl….Tony's Tuxes guide to prom

First off, to have a memorable prom, you are going to want to spend time with a girl you like… whether she’s your friend, crush or girlfriend.  Don’t wait too long to ask your special girl, especially if you have a feeling that some other guy wants to ask her, too.  Your enjoyment at prom will depend heavily on the person you take–choose the wrong gal and you and your friends will still be laughing about it 10 years later. If you’re dating somebody, your choice is easy. Just take your girlfriend. If you’re not dating somebody, you can always take a girl that’s a friend. I did that for one of my proms and had a great time. It takes away some of the romantic pressure that a lot of young people experience at prom. We were just interested in having a good time.

Whomever you ask to prom, make sure you do it as soon as possible before the big night. Picking out a prom dress is a big deal for a girl and they’ll want plenty of time to make the right choice.

How should you ask a girl to prom? I usually just pulled the girl aside during school and asked her straight up, “Would you like to go to prom with me?” Simple and got the job done. Some guys did some elaborate and creative invitations that rivaled wedding proposals. Chalk writing on driveways, creating poster boards using candy bars to create a message, treasure hunts, serenading Elvises…I hear modern young ladies love this, so if that’s your style, then go for it. After you’ve secured a date, you’ll need to buy tickets to get into prom. Purchase them as soon as they go on sale.


Get Fitted for and Rent a Tux

In my day things were a little different, but thank goodness times have changed!  We no longer have the same styles and I know you are excited about that!  This is your night to show off, your night to let your personality shine. Weather you prefer something classic or something that SCREAMS your personality Tony’s has exactly what you need.

In most places in the Texas prom is a black tie affair, so that means you’ll need a tuxedo. For most men these days, whether young or old, life gives you very few chances to wear a tux–so enjoy it! Basically, at Tony’s we suggests keeping it classic and simple. You can’t go wrong with a black two button or a single-button, peak lapel coat, vest and traditional tuxedo trousers. We have the trousers in flat front, slim flat front and pleated front.  You want something where you can look back at pictures twenty years later and think, “Man, I looked great!   And look how much hair I had!”

Not a Tuxedo kind of Guy?  No Problem!  We rent vests, shirts and ties that guys wear with their jeans and boots and look great!

Of course, you could have some fun as well. You’re young. There probably won’t be another time in your life that you can get away with wearing a wild combination to a formal affair, so if that’s your thing and your date’s okay


Find a GroupTony's Tuxes Guide to Prom

In my experience, attending prom with a group of friends is the way to go. It just makes the night more enjoyable and removes a lot of the pressure a young couple might feel if they were to go by themselves. The tricky part is figuring out who to group up with. While you might want to experience prom with your best buddy, your date might want to go with a different group. I never had a problem with this, but I can see it happening and causing all sorts of high school drama. My advice: be flexible and play it cool no matter what group you end up with. Even if you don’t have dinner with your buds, you can still see them at the dance, and at after prom festivities.

Rent or Purchase?

Rent your tux, don’t buy a tuxedo. It doesn’t make sense for a person your age who’s still growing and probably isn’t attending a lot of black tie events to buy a tuxedo. Because you’re renting, you’re not going to get a tuxedo that fits like a custom suit, but try to get something as close as possible to it. If your tuxedo jacket fits well in the shoulders and in the chest, you’re golden. Also, make sure the pants are as close to your size as possible.  However if you have several occasions coming up and just don’t want to rent, Tony’s has suits beginning at $199.50.   And I suggest spending a little extra to have your suit tailored so that it will fit perfectly.  Our Tailor is the best and can make your suit look like it was made custom just for you.

Visit Tony’s as soon as you can to ensure you have the greatest possible selection to choose from. You’ll have to decide on what jacket style and shirt collar type you want, whether you’re going bow tie or neck tie, and whether or not you’ll be wearing a vest or cummerbund. You can also rent shoes here if you need them.  After you’ve been fitted and have placed your order, we will let you know when you can pick up your tux.

Keep track of all the stuff that comes with your rental, especially the small stuff like the tie and cufflinks. Make sure to return the tuxedo to Tony’s as soon as possible. Don’t worry about laundering. That is included in your d/w fee.

Buy the Corsage

The guy is responsible for buying the corsage for the girl, and the girl is responsible for buying a boutonniere for the guy.

The corsage needs to compliment the color of your date’s dress, so you’ll need to ask your date what color her dress will be.  If you want the perfect look for you both, it is a great idea for you to purchase your boutonniere and her corsage from the same florist.  That way they can make them match perfectly.    You can also ask if she has a favorite flower. Make sure to ask if her dress will be sleeveless or strapless too, as this will determine whether you should get a wrist or pinned corsage. When you get the information, head over to a florist, and relay the information to them. They’ll offer suggestions on flower types and color, as well as what sort of greenery to include in the corsage. Roses are a popular pick. Keep it small and simple.  We have so many great florist in Paris, Texas you can’t go wrong!

Florists get slammed at prom time, so don’t wait until the last minute to order it. Two weeks before prom is plenty of time.

Make Reservations for Dinner

Choose a restaurant that’s local and has a nice ambiance. Prom night is supposed to be special.  Make your dinner reservations early.  Places fill up quickly near prom time. See if your restaurant requires reservations.   Tell the restaurant how many you plan to have in your party. If they can’t accommodate your group, you’ll need to look somewhere else.  Having Dinner at your home or a friends can be fun too.  Mom’s love to plan dinner parties for special occasions!  Progressive dinners can be fun where you have appetizers in one home, salads, dinner and dessert all in separate locations.  Remember have fun!

Get a Straight Razor Shave and a HaircutGirls usually treat themselves to a pedicure, manicure, and a trip to the hairstylist before prom. Who says the guys can’t pamper themselves a bit before the big night, too? The dude equivalent to girls’ pre-prom ritual is a straight razor shave and a haircut at a barber

Get Ready

Start getting ready an hour or so before prom. Shower up, brush your teeth, comb your hair, and put on your tuxedo. Gather everything you’ll need for the evening–corsage, prom tickets, after-prom party tickets, cash, and mints. Put the tickets, cash, and mints in your inside jacket pockets and the corsage in the car. Throw an umbrella in the car too–if it rains, your date will be none too happy if her carefully crafted up-do gets ruined. Now give yourself a look in the mirror…you are good to go!  Tonight’s going to be a great night.

Pick Up Your Date

Make sure your car is clean, arrive on time, and come to the door with your corsage. Warmly greet her parents with a smile and firm handshake. Chances are your date is still doing some last minute things to make a grand entrance. Make some small talk with her parents.  Also let them know your plans for after prom and when they should expect their daughter will be home.

When your date enters the room, give her a big smile, walk over and give her a hug, and immediately compliment how she looks. She probably spent all day getting ready for tonight.

You and your date will now exchange corsages and boutonnieres. Traditionally, your date is supposed to pin the boutonniere on you and you’re supposed to place the corsage on your date. Placing a wrist corsage on your date isn’t hard; pinning a corsage on her dress is trickier. In my experience, moms usually get involved with the pinning part when they see the guy stick himself with the pin five times. Let them help.

Her parents will probably want to snap some photos. When that’s done, head towards the car and open the door for your date.

Pre-Prom picturesTonys Tuxes guide to prom

Parents will want to take pictures before you and your date head over to prom. It seems the girls were really into it and the guys just tolerated it. At my high school, the pre-prom photo session was a big event. Our prom night group would have photos taken at the school. Mom’s would gush over how pretty the girls looked, while the dads that showed up generally stood by the food table munching on cheese and crackers.  Now most of the kids go to our beautiful downtown area in Paris.  We are so fortunate to have places like the Culbertson Fountain, Gibralter Hotel, Bywaters Park or even the Santa Fe Train Depot.

Whether your pre-prom picture event is just you and your date at her house or a big event, be cooperative and smile. It will make the experience better for everyone. Also, NO HOVER HANDS! In pictures of just you and your date, proper arm placement is behind the small of the girl’s back with your hand resting on her waist.


After pictures, head over to the restaurant. Make sure you get there at the time of your reservation. If you and your group are running late, call the restaurant and let them know. When you get to the table, and if it’s convenient, pull out your date’s chair and help her in her seat.

Remember your basic table manners. Napkin in laps, cell phones off, elbows off the table. When your food arrives, don’t start eating until everyone has been served. Break the stereotype that many waiters have about high schoolers being loud, rude, and poor tippers.  Be on your best behavior; the pre-prom meal sets the tone for a special and classy evening. Treat your server with respect and tip them generously after your meal.


Finally. It’s time for the big event. When I attended prom, I always planned to arrive about 20 to 30 minutes after it started. That will allow enough time for things to get going.   Make sure to get out on the dance floor as much as possible. That’s what you’re there to do, right?

Don’t be the guy who’s too cool or too shy to dance. Get out there and let loose. You’re young,  you’re with your best friends, and life is good. Have fun!

Even if your date has turned out to be a dud, or you paired off through some less than ideal circumstances and you weren’t excited to go with her in the first place, don’t ditch your date at the dance. No matter what happens, you’re her escort, and you should stay by her side for most of the evening

You guys are all so lucky to have the great after prom parties sponsored by your schools.  It is great way to spend the rest of your evening.  Have fun and be safe!