The story behind the tuxedo

The story behind the tuxedo

This word sounds like something so expensive, so luxurious – tuxedo… it is something from the lime life with cocktails, golden jewelry and the most beautiful women. Isn’t it so? These days almost anyone can afford themselves at least renting a tuxedo for one night stand with high life. Have you ever thought about the history of this gorgeous suit? If not, this article is going to astonish you with some amusing facts and details.

Fanciful story about fanciful clothes

There is no common opinion on the matter on inventing the tuxedo. There are several stories and one may choose whichever sounds more tasty. We will stick to the most widespread and realistic, featuring a tobacco magnate named Pierre Lorillard. He lived in the 19th century on the territory that had an interesting name – Tuxedo Park. It was located aside the New York and was actually a residential colony. Due to the efforts of the Lorillard family the place became a kind of a resort for the cream of the society, where they would go hunting and fishing.White tuxedo

The growing popularity of the Tuxedo Park attracted more and more sophisticated, famous and rich people. It was expected that soon just the mere hunting and fishing became not enough for them. So the high life settled for creating a special club there – a Tuxedo Club. As any decent club they would have not only modest meetings, but also gorgeous balls. You’ve already guessed, what was coming next, haven’t you?

How a rebel turned to a snob

On the first Annual Ball of Tuxedo Club Pierre Lorillard demonstrated how fanciful and contemporary was his thinking. The usual set of clothes that a man would wear to such an occasion would be a tailcoat and a shirt. A color of course was black and white. Pierre Lorillard decided to wear a jacket that didn’t have a long “tail”. It is said that the magnate got his inspiration from the Savile Row. That was a tailor who worked in the Henry Poole & Co, a tailoring manufacture, that created suits for Prince of Wales. Nevertheless, Pierre Lorillard didn’t actually wore what he wanted. His son did. Griswold Lorillard known for being a rich rebel was the one to fulfil his father’s fancy. And this suit so amusing back at that time, that after the first flash of shock the instant admiration came.

So, it’s probably clear now, where did tuxedo get it’s name and who chopped it’s tail off. It first was set as an obligatory formal attire for an evening in the New York Metropolitan Opera in 1889. And now tuxedo (or tux, or even “a penguin suit”) is the most luxurious and formal attire for the Black Tie dress code.