TIPS FOR ATTENDING A BRIDAL SHOW

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

You're engaged and have decided to attend some of the upcoming bridal shows.  Now what?  How do you get the most out of the show?  Just like the wedding, the bridal shows will go much smoother with a little planning.  Be prepared before you attend to get the most out of each and every minute.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Top 10 tips for attending a bridal show:
 
 
THREE IS NOT A CROWD:  Bring your fiance, parents, bridesmaids, friends and long lost relatives.  They can help you cover twice the ground and offer opinions about the choices of wedding merchants. (Note: About 30% of fiancés attend, in spite of what yours may say! Last time I checked, men liked cake samples too.)
GET TIME ON YOUR SIDE:  Plan to spend at least 2 hours so you can visit all the wedding vendors and see at least one fashion preview. You will regret it if you don't.  No where else will you accomplish so much in so little time. 
STICK IT TO WIN:  Bring pre-printed address labels for prizes and giveaways.  Many vendors hold drawings for trips, prizes, and discounts.  Your labels save you from repeatedly writing your name and address.  This saves time and ink.  You can even print some of your own and include your email address.
DON'T FORGET YOUR WALLET:  Bring your checkbook in case you might want to book services or hold dates with a deposit. The top photographers, caterers, florists, and DJs book up quickly.
BRING YOUR CALENDAR:  With so much talent in one location, you are sure to find vendors you would like to schedule a one-on-one consultation with.  
HAVE A PLAN:  Know what you are looking for and have questions in mind. You will save time and see everything that’s important to you.
COMFORT MATTERS:  Wear comfortable shoes.  You will be doing a lot of walking and it's hard to concentrate on what you're doing with aching feet. 
HAVE A BACK-UP PLAN:  If you're out of town, send a substiute to to collect information on services you need and register you for prizes.  
HAVE NO FEAR:  Ask questions!  The vendors are there to help you. You are under no pressure to buy from them, so find out everything you need to know.  Most of the vendors have years of experience and can give you great and practical information.
KNOW YOUR OPTIONS:  There are lots of shows scheduled from January - April each year.  Know what's available.  Some vendors and venues even host their own private shows.  Check it out and make a schedule.  That way you won't miss a thing.
 
 
 
 
 
Want to meet and greet with Mr. Burch Formal Wear?  Check out the shows where we will be this season.
 
January 4, 2015 from 1pm-4pm Bridal Market by PWG at SOHO in Homewood
January 11, 2015 from 12pm-5pm Southern Bridal Show with Elite Events at the BJCC 

WHY YOU SHOULD ATTEND BRIDAL SHOWS

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Congratulations!  You got engaged over the Christmas holiday and are offically planning your wedding.  Now what?
 
 
Planning your wedding can be one of the most challenging and overwhelming projects that you tackle.  There are so many details to take care of.  You have to pick a venue, entertainment, lighting, caterer, dress and that’s only the beginning.  How are you supposed to even know everything you need?  Where can you go for help?
 
 
 
 
 
 
Bridal shows play an important role for engaged couples.  They give you the opportunity to learn about the latest industry trends, see gorgeous venues and network with professional vendors who know their stuff.  There are many reasons to attend but let’s look at the top three.
 
 
 
 
Great Ideas
You can network with other couples and professional vendors.  This is a great way to gather information and get some fresh ideas.  You might find an excellent referral from another bride.  You can tour some amazing venues like the Southern Bridal Show at the BJCC January 11, 2015.  A bridal showcase gives you the opportunity to surround yourself with people who are looking for the same answers you are.  Don't forget to catch all the shows (especially the fashion shows)!
 
 
 
 
 
 
Meet Vendors
 
Most bridal shows have vendor sponsors with multiple industries represented.  Not sure about your location?  Attend the venue’s bridal show.  Need help deciding what kind of entertainment to offer?  Speak to one the  experienced professional entertainment experts.  Most bridal showcase  vendors have been in the business for years, and are willing to share their knowledge with you.  They have seen the good, the bad and the ugly.  Bridal shows are an excellent way to benefit from the professional’s years of experience.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Freebies!
 
Bridal shows are notorious for having AMAZING give-aways.  You can win all kinds of interesting and wedding related things just by going to the shows and learning more about your upcoming event.  Like the upcoming Southern Bridal Show, registered brides will be eligible to  receive all kinds of prizes.  Make sure you stop at each booth to register for the individual prizes as well checking out the big giveaway.  You can’t take advantage of the give-away opportunities if you don’t go to the shows.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Brides have enough to do without trying to do it all alone.  Come to a bridal show and see what you’re missing. You can always stop by our booth and speak to our experienced staff.  We can't wait to see you.
 
Stay tuned for a complete bridal show schedule.

HOW TO AVOID HOLIDAY STRESS

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

The holiday season is here.  You can hear Christmas carols on the radio and get eggnog from the store.  With all this holiday cheer, how can you avoid the stress of the season?  Let's face it. Some holiday-related stress is to be expected. Cookies will be burned. Flights will be canceled. How you react to it determines how the holiday will be remembered. And the pressure hits some people harder than others.
 
 
So how can you become one of those people who chuckles at adversity—silly snowstorm!—instead of crying into pumpkin pie? Here are six suggestions to to prevent the meltdown and stop the implosion before it happens.
 
 
1.  Create realistic expectations. If your holidays are more “Christmas with the Griswolds” than a Norman Rockwell painting, that’s alright.  Embrace your situation (and your family) and go with it.
 
2.  Just say “no” to extra obligations. Plan ahead, set priorities of how you will and won’t spend your time this season, and be sure to commit time for things you really want to do during the holidays.  Don't let your son's music teacher make you feel bad if you can't bake six dozen Silent Night cupcakes for the Open House at school tomorrow.
 
3.  Ignore media pressures to overexert and overspend. Remind yourself that these are marketing ploys and don’t give in to pressure to spend and do more.  Do you really need gifts for every person on your street?
 
 
 
 
4.  Set a budget and stick to it. Money problems do not disappear with the glow of holiday lights. Stay the course and give gifts that reflect your personal style, not a high price tag.  Keep the two page credit card bill out of your mailbox in January.
 
5.  Maintain healthy limits.  Eat and drink sensibly, get enough sleep and try to get a little exercise. You’ll be less cranky if you’re taking good care of yourself.  It's more difficult to have a tantrum on a full night's sleep.
 
 
6.  Embrace new holiday traditions.  Create new traditions that fit in better with your family and friends. Review your various holiday activities and let go of those traditions that drain your time, money or energy.
 
 
 
 
There’s no need to let the frantic pace of December turn you into a Grinch. Let these tips increase
your enjoyment of the holiday season. Remember – lower stress levels lead to a happier you.  

HOLIDAY STYLE TIPS FOR MEN 2014

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

The Holiday Season is here.  How many parties and holiday functions have you been invited to this year? Will you be attending a neighborhood open house?  Office party? Charitable Fundraiser? Festive family gathering?  Do you already have New Year's Eve plans?  What are the trends for men's fashion this holiday season?
 
 
Neighborhood: Neutral colors are best here. He can't go wrong in his best dark work suit as the key is to blend in with the crowd at this party. Let someone else get chided for their goofy snowman sweater tomorrow.
 
 
 
 
Office: If he dresses in layers, he can start the day out more formal and as he gets more comfortable, he can shed a layer or two for a more casual look. A chunky cardigan over a button-down and tie, topped off with a blazer will do the trick.
 
 
 
 
Fundraiser/New Year's Eve: He likes the bowtie, but can never wear one to work? This is the perfect time to break it out. It's cool to play mix-and-match: no need to stick to strictly black and white when anything goes. Try brown and black for the modern spin on a classic tux.
 
 
 
 
 
Contact Mr. Burch (205) 252-3600 for your formal wear needs during the holidays this year.  Our experienced and professional staff would love to help you look your best.  Happy Holidays!

MOUNTAIN BROOK OPEN HOUSE NOVEMBER 11, 2014

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

 
We are so excited to be able to invite future brides and grooms to our newly renovated Mountain Brook store. New floors, paint, furniture and a flat screen TV make the renting or buying a tuxedo or suit even more pleasurable. 
 
 
The Open House is from 9am to 5 pm on November 1, 2014 at our Mountain Brook store located at 2829 Cahaba Road, Mountain Brook AL 35223.
 
We will have light refreshments provided by Olexa’s and pizza from Davenport’s Pizza Palace. We will also be having a class on how to tie a bow tie because we all know bow ties are cool.  This will be the ONLY day to receive the best deals of the year! Come see what we have to offer and how we can make your day the best day.
 
Join us on Sunday November 2, 2014 for the PWG Bridal Show at the BJCC!

HISTORY OF HALLOWEEN

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

 
 
 
 
Halloween is a holiday celebrated on the night of October 31.  The word Halloween is a shortening of All Hallows' Evening also known as Hallowe'en or All Hallows' Eve.
 
 
 
Traditional activities include trick-or-treating, bonfires, costume parties, visiting "haunted houses" and carving jack-o-lanterns. Irish and Scottish immigrants carried versions of the tradition to North America in the nineteenth century. Other western countries embraced the holiday in the late twentieth century including Ireland, the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and the United Kingdom as well as of Australia and New Zealand.
 
Halloween has its origins in the ancient Celtic festival known as Samhain (pronounced "sah-win"). 
The festival of Samhain is a celebration of the end of the harvest season in Gaelic culture. Samhain was a time used by the ancient pagans to take stock of supplies and prepare for winter. The ancient Gaels believed that on October 31, the boundaries between the worlds of the living and the dead overlapped and the deceased would come back to life and cause havoc such as sickness or damaged crops.
 
The festival would frequently involve bonfires. It is believed that the fires attracted insects to the area which attracted bats to the area. These are additional attributes of the history of Halloween.
 
Masks and costumes were worn in an attempt to mimic the evil spirits or appease them.
 

Halloween is a holiday celebrated on the night of October 31.  The word Halloween is a shortening of All Hallows' Evening also known as Hallowe'en or All Hallows' Eve.

 

Traditional activities include trick-or-treating, bonfires, costume parties, visiting "haunted houses" and carving jack-o-lanterns. Irish and Scottish immigrants carried versions of the tradition to North America in the nineteenth century. Other western countries embraced the holiday in the late twentieth century including Ireland, the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and the United Kingdom as well as of Australia and New Zealand. Halloween has its origins in the ancient Celtic festival known as Samhain (pronounced "sah-win"). The festival of Samhain is a celebration of the end of the harvest season in Gaelic culture. Samhain was a time used by the ancient pagans to take stock of supplies and prepare for winter. The ancient Gaels believed that on October 31, the boundaries between the worlds of the living and the dead overlapped and the deceased would come back to life and cause havoc such as sickness or damaged crops.

 

  The festival would frequently involve bonfires. It is believed that the fires attracted insects to the area which attracted bats to the area. These are additional attributes of the history of Halloween.

Masks and costumes were worn in an attempt to mimic the evil spirits or appease them.

HOW TO BE A GOOD WEDDING GUEST

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Congratulations!  You've just been invited to a wedding.  You're probably familiar with the fact that the best man and maid of honor have certain duties to the bride and groom.  You should also be aware that as a guest, so do you.  The couple have selected you to attend and share their special day.  You should be prepared to be on your best behavior.  Here are a few things to consider.

 

RSVP...we beg you!

You will probably recieve an RSVP card with your invitation.  USE IT.  You normally get it about 4 weeks before the deadline.  Don't file it away thinking "I have plenty of time."  This is a great way to forget or misplace it.  Go ahead and take a few minutes to let the couple know your intentions.  The vendors need a headcount weeks before so there will be enough food, drink and wedding favors to accomodate you.  Sneak your RSVP in past the deadline and you'll make a lot of people scramble and not very happy.

 

 

Are you on the guestlist?

Don't add a plus one.  If your name is the only one on the envelope, you're the only one invited. You might also consider this while deciding if you should bring your children.  If the invitation is made out to the Smith Family or the kids are listed on the inside envelope, consider bringing your rug rats.  Otherwise, please invest in a babysitter.  Besides, it's nice to have an adult night out now and then.

 

 

 

It's not about you

Seriously?  How difficult is it to arrive on time? The bride and grown didn't save and plan for a year so you can walk down the aisle in front of the maid of honor.  Plan on arriving 30 minutes before the ceremony is scheduled.  If there is some unforseen circumstance that prevents you arriving on time (like a tornado or alien space ship) wait until the ceremony is over and join the guests at the reception.  

 

Also, consider the focus of the wedding when selecting what to wear.  Be respectful of the dress code and dress appropriately.  Try not to wear anything that will draw unnecassry attention to yourself, like a long white dress.

 

Do not play paparazzi

There is no reason for you to take pictures during a wedding ceremony.  NONE.  At best your flash is ruining the professional photos being made by the professional photographer and blinding the wedding party.  At worst, you iPhone or iPad is blocking the aisle and preventing the paid team of photographers and videographers from getting the moments they were paid to capture.  The couple wants to look out and see your smiling face, not the back of your phone.

You might also consider not plastering every moment you capture on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  Many candid shots including first look, have been ruined by well meaning guests who are updating their status.

 

 

Because I said so that's why

Be a team player. Go prepared to play along.  Is everyone expected to dance?  Boogie down.  Is everyone lined up at the photobooth?  Say cheese.  By accepting the couple's invitation you are agreeing that you are up for whatever they throw your way. Your accomodating attitude will be remebered for years to come.

 

 

Step away from the bar

Open bar does not equal "please drink as much as you can hold and dance on the table."  Drinking too much can be embarrassing (for you and the couple) as well as dangerous.  Unless you planned on blacking out earlier, you probably don't have a ride home.  Also, consider the photographer and videographer haven't been drinking and are there to record every cringe inducing move you make.  Pace yourself so you can toast with the couple until the reception is over.

 

 

 

Go postal

To prevent friend/family of the couple or the wedding planner from having to load her car and deliver 200 pounds worth of gifts, please mail your present.  All registries will have a shipping address.  This will allow the couple to open gifts at their convenience and make sure the purchase is insured until arrival.  Even if you're giving cash, you can still mail a check or money order.  This will insure it doesn't get lost in the commotion or even taken.  

 

These are a few suggestions for your consideration before attending your next wedding. Be sure to contact Mr Burch about your wedding attire.  We're here to help you look good.

TALMADGE VISITS THE WHITE ROOM BRIDAL SALON

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

After a good rest on vacation in Gatlinburg we were ready to start visiting some local shops. Where should we go first? We started out at The White Room located in the heart of Mountain Brook Village. I was a little nervous sending that first Facebook message to Cathy Kelley, one of the owners , trying to explain exactly what I was doing. What response would I get? Would it be similar to my families? Nope. Cathy was very receptive and we had an appointment to meet her and the get a tour of her store two days later.
 
 
It was a beautiful morning in Mountain Brook and Talmadge was wearing our new fitted white Providence notch tuxedo, after Labor Day I know, but we were visiting The White Room. Right?
 
 
 
As we were taking a couple of photos outside Cathy came out the front door and got a picture with our sharp dressed man. When we finished outside, it was time to see what the White Room was all about. 
 
 
 
When you walk in the front door you are immediately greeted by beautiful things. A curio full of sparkling jewelry and a few mannequins of their own adorned in the prettiest of dresses. As you make your way into the main showroom you are met with a feeling of style and sophistication. The dresses line the walls hanging from custom racks, a comfortable seating area, and one of the coolest chandeliers I have ever seen. Cathy was nice enough to give me a grand tour of the place and it is larger inside than you think. Every nook and cranny is decorated elegantly and the break room is to die for! I’m a guy and I would shop for a dress here! I sat down with Cathy and Carolyn in the showroom to get an insight on how the business got started and a little background. 
 
 
 
Carolyn Kelley started altering dresses for the only couture shop in Birmingham at the time. Ladies from Birmingham would go to Atlanta and pick out their dresses then come home to get altered. As her work became recognized Carolyn became the name in town for wedding dress alterations. After a while Carolyn realized that this was a successful business to be in and has not looked back. Seeing the need for alterations and the majority of ladies flocking to Atlanta for wedding gowns, the next step was a no brainer, to open a bridal shop. All the lines that the ladies were bringing back were designers that were not yet offered in the state of Alabama. Carolyn decided to offer those designers right here in Birmingham. Having that idea in mind, Carolyn placed an ad in an upcoming bridal magazine connecting her name with it, even before she had actually opened a store. This was very successful seeing that her name was well recognized in the business. The publication came out in 2004 and the first store was opened January 2005 in Old Town Helena, Alabama where Cathy came in as an owner/manager. After 5 years there they moved The White Room to Cahaba Heights and after 5 years there saw a great opportunity in Mountain Brook.  They have been at the present location since June of this year. 
 
 
 
In the short time I spent with these two ladies it was apparent their genuine passion not only for the business but also for the bride-to-be’s satisfaction. Their personalities are infectious and I left the shop with a smile on my face. Just a note, their semi-annual black tie event with gowns up to 80% off is in full swing and will end September 30th so hurry in. Thanks to Carolyn and Cathy Kelley for the chance to visit with them and we hope to see them soon.

HAVE YOU MET TALMADGE?

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Talmadge? Talmadge who?
 
 
 
That is a very good question. Some of you who follow Mr Burch and my personal Facebook page may have noticed some posts including a well-dressed (most of the time) mannequin we have named Talmadge. Where did he come from? He was hiding in the warehouse, deep in our shipping department. Amongst all the other mannequins he was the one with a smile on his face and a 3 inch layer of dust covering his entire form. The idea came to me while making plans to take a vacation to Gatlinburg, Tennesse. Why not take a mannequin with me and not only show the beautiful sites but also showcase some of the great looking tuxedos and suits Mr Burch has in inventory? The plan was in motion.
 
 
 
The name Talmadge was my Grandfather’s name and seemed appropriate, meshing an old name with the world today. It is also a very unique name that people will not forget. 
 
 
 
Once I got approval from the bosses, which took a little convincing, I was quick to put in tuxedo orders for Talmadge to wear on our trip. Trying to explain to my family that I would be bringing a mannequin with me on our trip was met with laughter and a couple of “have you lost your mind?” looks. After I explained the idea they were more receptive but still had their reservations. I was especially worried that Talmadge might scare my nephew, 5, and my nieces, 4 and 1. Surprisingly they found him quite interesting and fun and helped me with him. The looks that I received as I was walking down the sidewalk in Gatlinburg are priceless and a huge thanks to my sister, Mary Dillard, for doing most of the photography.
 
 
 
We had a blast with him on our trip. We went to the Smoky Mountain National Park, The Apple Barn, downtown Gatlinburg, and many other places. (See Facebook for our family vacay photos.)
 
 
 
Since our trip he has been relaxing for a bit but he has plans on visiting local businesses, landmarks, and other wedding vendors. Where will he be next? Who knows. He might show up at your door soon. 
 
 
 
Would you like Talmadge to visit you?  Let us know.

HOW TO GET GREAT HOMECOMING PHOTOS

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Homecoming is here and most parents can't wait to break out the camera.  You want to be certain to get a few pics that you (and the kids) will be proud of.  Take a look at a few tips listed below.
 
 
Try to get a good background:  Your backyard will probably make a good background for your photos.  If it's getting dark outside, don't forget the flash.
 
 
 
Get individual shots:  Most parents take photos of the couple or group before they go out but you might also consider individual shots as well.  This way you'll have a great momento even if the couple isn't dating later.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Get different group shots: You definitely want to photograph the entire group, but you might also want to get varying group shots like just girls or all the guys together.   Don't forget to get a shot of each couple as well.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sweat the details:  A lot of time and money goes into getting ready for any formal event.  Be sure to capture the details like the corsage, vintage earrings or special hair do.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Everything doesn't have to be planned:  Kids will be kids.  Let them have fun and capture a few images of them playing around.  These spontaneous (not posed) photos will probably be some of your favorites.  Plus most kids will want fun, individual shots for their Facebook profile.
 
 
 
 
 
Hopefully, this will help you capture the moments before the formal and give you some great momentos.  Don't forget to contact Mr. Burch for all your formal fashion needs.  We are here to help.