Bonardi's Formalwear

History of the Tuxedo


Once upon a time people didn't bother to dress for dinner, they were too busy hunting for it and weddings tended to be a rather informal affairs.

By the late 1700's formal dress was primarily for the rich and noble. Fancy, colorful and fussy. In fact, just about everything in those days tended to be a little fussy.

In the early 19th century, a long came an Englishman who changed the face of male fashion, Mr. Beau Brummell. He introduced the world to classic English tailoring and for 15 years fashion hung on his every word. When Beau said I think I will wear a cravat, everybody wore cravats.

In 1886 another famous dandy, Mr. Griswalled Laurellaud shook the fashion world, when he clipped the tails off the swallow tail coat and transformed it into the first tuxedo. It was made of worsted wool and had no pockets. The occasion was the Autumn Ball and the place was The Tuxedo Park Club in New York. The tuxedo was an overnight sensation.

In 1903, Mr. Samuel Rudolphker, father of Marliss and Max opened his gentlemen's tailoring factory in Philadelphia, but even he didn't know that he would revolutionize men's formalwear.

In 1930, Marliss and Max Rudolphker introduced the 1st mass market ready to wear tuxedo. The price was $16.00

In 1950, After Six changed the face of formalwear with the comfortable light weight, Tony Martin Tuxedo. The tuxedo was in. Then in 1954 After Six created the 1st wash and wear dinner jacket in dashing white and the formalwear rental market came into it's own. Now everyone could afford to step out in formal style.

In the 60's nearly anything went and even formalwear went a little wild.

But now the bowtie's back bigger than ever with a return to formal elegance. Now America is celebrating it's special occasions with the elegance that only formalwear can give.

And that teenager night of nights "The Prom" is back in style and the kids are loving it.

Today's weddings are wonderfully, joyously formal occasions again. From the big day for the royal family to the big day for your own little girl.