Ivy-Style recently got an interesting write-up from Ivygate.com. Despite the undergrad writer’s first-class education, he seems to have had trouble understanding this website — not to mention writing parody. We spent THREE days debating whether IvyGate’s post was worth responding to, when our fully legit, street-credited Ivy League contributor Taliesin finally lowered himself to the task:
One of the ironic facts about the Ivy look — and I write this as a graduate of Cornell and Harvard — is that many current Ivy League students know next to nothing about it. While Ivy staples like natural shoulder suits and flat-front trousers have spread into the sartorial lexicons of numerous subgroups, from American jazz musicians to working-class London mods, these items are mostly absent from the wardrobes of students at the schools for which the look was named.
This partly explains the confusion at IvyGate, a blog devoted to “news, gossip, sex, sports and more at Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Penn, Princeton and Yale.” More befuddled by tweed than the most befuddled tweedy professor, IvyGate sees traditional clothing as the province of “men with walkers,” who are likely “concealing a colostomy bag.”
But behind these unfortunate characterizations lies a real phenomenon: The core items of Ivy style — blazers, leather shoes, wool trousers — are clothing for grown men, whether 18 or 80.
In general, most Ivy League students are sartorially indistinguishable from students at less prestigious schools. All wear washable cotton t-shirts, pants and shorts, athletic shoes, and fleece jackets — clothing items frequently purchased by parents for their toddlers. While stalwart clothiers like the Andover Shop in Cambridge and J. Press in New Haven continue to carry on the Ivy style tradition in its birthplace, Urban Outfitters gets more student traffic.
Nonetheless, one must expect that most contemporary Ivy Leaguers will eventually outgrow their superhero underwear phase and realize that ruling the world demands less snobbism and more panache. — TALIESIN