A Closer Look: Crittenden’s Ivy Sport Coat

As a follow-up to our last post on jacket linings, which included quotes from industry veteran Crittenden Rawlings, I wanted to share more about his new Ivy sportcoat, which we first showed you back in January when I saw it at one of the trade shows.

The jackets have finally gone through production and hit stores, and Rawlings sent me a sample for closer inspection. It’s a fabulous jacket that I think fills a certain gap in the market. If they came in my size I’d snatch them up in every fabrication, but alas 42 long is the smallest long, and as the jacket is cut a tad short (a regular measures 30.25 down the back, rather than the standard 31), a 40 regular is too short. (That I probably need less than a 40 these days anyway is another story.)

In addition to the limited sizes, the jacket is unfortunately not quite as affordable as I reported in my Huffington Post column. Actual retail price is more like $595.

The jacket seems to be a kind of cross between J. Press and Rugby, which is to say something like this jacket from Press’ 110th Anniversary collection, although the Press version is priced at $980. The youthful angle comes through in the slightly shorter length and the presence of darts. The lapel is also just a touch over three inches, and the fabrics — such as this olive and black herringbone with beaded overstripe, an exact duplicate of a fabric offered when Rawlings worked at Norman Hilton — have a vintage flair.

But the overall sensibility and attention to detail makes the jacket feel a tad more mature than the more youth-driven Rugby jackets that also feature patch pockets, three buttons, and natural shoulders. I have several jackets by Ralph Lauren that come with natural shoulder, patch pockets, lapped seams, 3/2 roll, darts and a three-inch lapel, and this is very similar, and for less than half the price. And you get a hook vent as a bonus.

As for the attention to detail, here are the taped inner seams:

French-faced interior and fabric origin:

And it’s always reassuring to see patch pockets and horn buttons next to a made-in-USA tag:

It’s a great jacket, and while it won’t please dart-phobes, it will please those who want a slightly trimmer lapel, less boxy cut, and vintage-inspired fabric.

The jacket was made in some half-dozen fabrics and can be had by calling the following retailers. — CC

Brittons: Columbia, SC
M.S. McClellan: Knoxville,TN
Plain Clothes: Birmingham,AL
Johnstone: Austin,TX
R. Derwin: Litchfield, CT
Bruce Baird: Chattanooga, TN
Button Down: San Francisco, CA
Highcliffe Clothiers: Middleburg, VA
Julians: Chapel Hill, NC

7 Comments on "A Closer Look: Crittenden’s Ivy Sport Coat"

  1. If one balks at the nearly $600 price, wait a year…..they’ll be selling at Sierra Trading Post for less than half that.

  2. $595.00 for a made-in-America jacket, using wool spun, dyed and woven in the Shetland Isles is GREAT deal.

  3. Christian, I’m curious: Now that you’ve lost weight, have your views on the fit of sack suits changed?

  4. Remind me of my views on sack suits, as I’m not sure what you mean.

  5. Now that you ask, I’m not sure if I can recall what your views are! So I’ll rephrase my question. Now that you’ve lost weight, do you find yourself favoring jackets that are closer-fitting around the waist?

  6. Not necessarily. Some of my jackets have some shape (nothing extreme). But I just commissioned another MTM, undarted, and found a very straight-cut vintage Andover Shop jacket.

    I’ve always maintained a sack jacket looks great on a thin guy, especially if the trousers, by contrast, are a bit tapered with no break.

    That’s the cool element in Ivy, for me.

  7. In this case, Ivy is a misnomer. How many during the Ivy heyday wore darted jackets? Skilled tailors can create subtle shaping through middle without adding the two front darts, which serve as a disruption.

    There are good reasons for dart phobia.

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