Friday, May 23, 2014

How to Dress for a Formal Event

Wondering what to wear to your next event?  We know that most people don't dress up all the time - and you may not remember what the formal terms really mean.  We know the proper formal attire - So, we've created a simple outline to help you! 

White Tie
Most formal event attire, but extremely rare.

Men:  Black Tail Coat, White Piqué Wing-Collared Shirt with Stiff Front, Suspenders, Shirt Studs and Cuff Links, White Vest and Bow Tie, White Gloves (optional), Black Patent Shoes and Black Dress Socks
Women:  Formal Floor Length Evening or Ball Gown, White Gloves (optional) 

Ivonne D by Mon Cheri Dress 212D71

Mac Duggal Dress 82063R

Black Tie
More common and a little less formal than white tie.

Men:  Black Tuxedo Jacket and Pants, Formal White Shirt, Shirt Studs and Cuff Links, Black Bow Tie, Black Cummerbund or Vest, Black Patent Shoes and Black Dress Socks


Women:  Formal Floor Length Evening Gown, Formal Cocktail Dress

Ivonne D by Mon Cheri Dress 113D00

Mac Duggal Dress 1417D

Creative Black Tie
What prom really is.

Men:  Tuxedo Jacket and Pants paired with Trendy Items, such as Colored Shirts or Matching Colored Bow Ties, Cummerbunds, and Vests

      Women:  Formal Floor-Length Evening Gown, Formal Cocktail Dress, Fun and Unique Accessories

 La Femme Dress 20060

 Angela & Alison Dress 41039

Sherri Hill Dress 11039

Black Tie Optional
Optional does not mean casual!

Men:  Tuxedo or Dark Suit with White Dress Shirt and Tie, Leather Dress Shoes and Dark Dress Socks

Women:  Formal Floor-Length Evening Gown, Formal Cocktail Dress, “Little Black Dress”, Dressy Separates

 Sherri Hill Dress 21208

Business Formal
For work-related formal functions.

Men:  Dark Business Suit, Matching Vest (optional), Dress Shirt, Conservative Tie, Leather Dress Shoes and Dark Dress Socks

Women:  Suit, Business-Style Dress, Dress with Jacket, Stockings

 The least formal event. 

Men:  Dark Business Suit, Matching Vest (optional), Dress Shirt, Tie, Leather Dress Shoes and Dark Dress Socks

Women: Short Cocktail Dress, “Little Black Dress”, Dressy Separates 
La Femme Dress 19725

La Femme Dress 19832

Remember, when in doubt - ALWAYS overdress!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Miss South Carolina

Here at TJ Formal, we love the Miss America system!  Miss America is the world's largest provider of scholarship money for young women. Over $45 million dollars is awarded annually through local, state and national competitions.  This system helps to mold bright young women and we love them!

Meet Miss South Carolina, Brooke Mosteller!

 We tracked her down for a quick interview before she gives up her title in June.

What sparked your interest in Pageantry?

I did my first pageant when I was in 9th grade.  I did Miss Wando, the high school pageant, all four years, because I loved to sing.  I was always doing sports, and it was my chance to have a solo, one time in the year to sing Barbara Streisand. That's really why I wanted to do it; I love performing on stage.

Why was it important for you to win the title of Miss South Carolina?  

Law school was really hard because all I was thinking about during school was Miss South Carolina.  A lot of people this year have asked 'awe, are you tired?', and I'm like, No!  It has just allowed my personality to break loose. The Lord gave it to me.  He has made me so extroverted. So, for my personally, this has been a breaking free kind of year. For myself, I am thankful for that.  In regards to the state (South Carolina), showing that the organization (Miss America) is a concrete and tangible thing is important because my platform (Go Higher) is so concrete.  It was really something of substance with College Application Day because I helped start it in 2009, and over 40,000 high school seniors have applied through it.  Then we had a press conference with senators and 8 representatives at the Miss South Carolina Text Free press conference.  I think this shows the state we are something that's real and service oriented so that was an important aspect for me, too.

Custom Rachelle Rose Gown

What effect has being Miss South Carolina had on your life?

When they say someone's life is about to change right before they crown the next girl, it is so true.  Not just this year, but going through the pageant process has changed my life.  That's why I push people and say, "I urge you just to give yourself a chance, just try the pageant out." I have learned so much about interview, how to present myself, where my weaknesses are, and where my strengths are.  You really learn to be the best you.

Tell me something you are proud of that you have achieved during your reign.

I remember the first school I went to, and I was asked to speak.  There was no topic, they just wanted to hear Miss South Carolina speak.  I really didn't know exactly what I was going to speak on.  But I think what I'm proud of is that I've really have come to have a message.  That's what I say is really important for girls to know before they go in there what your message is to a fifth grade class. The middle and elementary school kids are really who we touch the most I think, just because the crown means the most to them. The lessons I have learned in my short 24 years of life have been able to help verbalize a message of positivity, hope, and a "go higher" kind of message to younger kids.  So, that is something I am pretty proud of.
Also, this texting legislation they have been trying to pass for over four years, I really think that this year will be the year to pass the statewide anti texting while driving ban.  A lot of people have said it is partly our (Miss South Carolina Organization) involvement.  One of the attorney's at the general assembly said, "It was the most highly attended and exciting press conference he has seen since Mark Sanford."  So, that was neat. 
Also, getting Miss Congeniality at Miss South Carolina and Miss America just solidified my love for people. I just love people, and they recognized that, which really meant a lot to me.

What is next for Miss Brooke Mosteller?  How do you top this year?!

You top this year by going to school.  I've gotten around $36,000 in scholarships, and I've finished one year of law school. I'll go back and do school again, but I think that I am going to get an agent, as well, so that I can host events, sing, or audition for things on the side.  I'm excited about that.  I will just kind of live the high school musical of both worlds!

If any of our readers know you, they know you always have a joke or a funny story!  Any recent funny encounters during your appearances lately?

Well this one is just kind of funny.  I went to this school, and a kid was sitting there when I was taking questions after finishing a speech.  One of his questions was, "Could I have a hug?", and I said, "Well, you can't sitting down. Get on up here!"  So he stood up and gave me a hug.  Then I just got swarmed with like 30 hugs or something.  It's not very funny, but it's cute!
Something that is funny that I have shared before, I went to Palmetto Christian Academy, which is where I went to school, to speak to a 4th grade class.  This little kid raised his hand and said, "Did you have sex in math?" I did not know what he was saying, so I said "I'm sorry". He said  "Did you have sex in math?" The teacher looked and me, and said "Did you have Saxxon math?", which is a type of math book.  So, that was kind of funny. So, I said, yes, I did have that.


We just want to thank Brooke for taking the time to talk to us for this interview.  Also, for being such an amazing Miss South Carolina.  Her energy is contagious and we can never have enough of that positivity!  We have loved our photo shoots, fashion shows and dressing her up for whatever occasion we can!  Whoever is crowned the next Miss South Carolina will surely have some big shoes to fill!
Queen B will be missed!

Good luck to her in all of her future endeavors!
-From the Ladies at TJ Formal.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

How to Shop - Mother-of-the-Bride/Groom

As a Mother, naturally you put your children first.  So dressing yourself for you son or daughter's wedding can prove to be difficult.  We know how busy you are!  You are devoting your time to plan the perfect wedding.  You are making sure that your child looks incredible and all the details are perfect, not to mention you have your own life to live!  We are here to remind you to take a day to think about yourself because your children want you to look beautiful at their wedding.  These photographs will last a lifetime!  You don't want to wait until the last minute and end up with something you don't feel good in just because you didn't think you should put yourself first for a moment.  Here are some tips to help get you on track!

Note to the Bride:  After you find your dress and bridesmaid dresses, help your Mother!  She needs you, she wants to shop with you and she wants you to be happy with how she looks.  Give her encouragement and make this a fun and easy experience for her.  Picking out her dress is the most difficult job she has in helping you plan you wedding.  Why?  Because she is not 20 or 30 something anymore.  Her body has changed and it may not be as easy to fit as it was years before.  Restricting her to a style or color that isn't right for her makes things difficult too.  Give her a range of colors to choose from that looks nice with the wedding party.  Having an idea about how you want her to look is great, but being extremely specific will make it very difficult for her.  Most of all, enjoy this experience and time together and have some fun! 

Shop early!  We can never say this enough.  The sooner the better.  Forget the 5 lbs you want to loose, and any other hang ups you have about yourself.  Alterations can always help you with the fit closer to the wedding date.  So if you lose it, alter it!  Shopping early also helps with your level of stress.  If you find the perfect dress and need a different size or color, you will have plenty of time to order it and get alterations.  How early should you start looking you ask?  It is never too early!  Special orders can take up to 15 weeks so keep this in mind when you are planning.

Be open to different styles.  We always say, you never know until you try!  Sometimes you will be surprised about what looks good on you.  It never hurts to try something on, especially if you aren't much of a shopper.  Also, let your sales consultant help you.  They know their dresses better than anyone and after seeing you in some styles, and speaking with you about what you want, they can pull for you.  Nine times out of ten, the sales consultant is the person that picks THE dress for you.  Let them do what they do best!

How formal is too formal?  This is a question with many different answers.  The first question is what time is the wedding?  If it is before 5 o'clock then you may not want a lot of beading or sequins, etc... You could also wear short or long.  If it is after 5 o'clock then you can go as formal as you feel comfortable.  Typically, long is the way to go, but t-length may also be acceptable.  Also consider the location of the wedding, climate, and if it is indoors or outdoors.  And, what the bride is wearing?  How formal is her gown?  Tell your consultant as many details as you can so they can help guide you! 

Enjoy the experience!  This is a happy time, there is going to be a wedding!  Don't get hung up on things that are just a small part of the big picture.  Everyone involved is important and of course you want everything to be perfect!  It will be, if you plan accordingly and don't get discouraged because some styles didn't look good on you.  You will find the perfect dress that was made for you and the wedding will be spectacular!  Happy Shopping!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Our Spring Sale is on!

Our Joplin spring sale is on now! Hurry in to take advantage of these huge discounts while they last! 

Shop now for summer weddings, get a great deal on a homecoming dress for fall, or treat yourself for upcoming special occasion. 

 Prom Dresses: 25% - 50% off (including 2014 styles) 
Wedding dresses: 10% - 50% off 
 Social occasion dresses: up to 50% off 
Shoes & Jewelry: 30% off 
Discount shop dresses: up to 75% off 

Sale prices only apply to in stock items at our Joplin, MO location while inventory lasts.

2014 Prom Dresses like this are on sale 25% off:

Come in today to see more sale styles!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

On Trend: Long Sleeve Prom Dresses

Long sleeve prom dresses have become the latest trend in sophisticated prom wear. In a fashion scene where strapless gowns have ruled for years, styles have taken a dramatic turn as sleeves have come back "in". Tip-of-the-shoulder, cap, and short sleeves are all ways to touch on this trend, but none create a statement like long sleeves.

Why go with a long sleeve prom dress?
Read on for 13 reasons to wear sleeves to your next formal occasion!

1. Add coverage with sheer sleeves to get glamour without bare skin.

2. Create drama and elegance with long sleeved prom dresses.

3. Balance out bare areas of a dress to create sophistication.

4. Hide arms with sleeves if they are a trouble area.

5. Long sleeves make any dress more sophisticated.

6. Meet religious dress requirements with modest sleeved styles.

7. Celebrities are walking the red carpet in long sleeved dresses.

8. Long prom dresses with sleeves are a great way to wear this trend...
9. And short prom dresses with sleeves are also a great look!

10. Plus size prom dresses with sleeves are a classic option.

11. If you want a more unique look, you can opt for one long sleeve.

12. Prom dresses with long sleeves are gracing the covers of fashion magazines.

13. Long sleeve gowns can keep you warm for fall or winter formals.

Long sleeve formal dresses aren't only for prom, but are a great option for all ages and all occasions. Browse our Long Sleeve Dresses for more styles for mothers-of-the-bride, pageant, and social occasion.