As we approach our 1,200th post, I’m going to start giving some of the early ones an encore in a regular series of reposts from five, six and seven years ago. This one originally ran on this day in 2009, and concerns heyday-era Ivy in unexpected places (or maybe not), as well as the interesting use of the term “Ivy League” in contemporary fashion nomenclature. — CC
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Of the many things from Ivy’s heyday that would seem laughably absurd today, the contents of this post probably top the list.
The 1964 film “Ride the Wild Surf” centers around big wave riding in Hawaii’s Waimea Bay. Pictured above are the three male leads, who’ve just stepped off the plane from California and gone straight to the beach.
That’s right: The mainlander on the left embarked on his surfin’ safari wearing a cream jacket with white pants, necktie and pocket square, and loafers with no socks.
Chase Colton (played by Peter Brown) is quickly nicknamed “Ivy League” by his love interest (Barbara Eden) for looking “so scrubbed and solid and superior.” Colton is pictured above with his less sartorially distinguished surf buddies, played by Tab Hunter and Fabian.
Turns out Colton attends a small private college in Southern California founded by his grandfather. Since sharing the founder’s last name gets him nothing but hazing from the other guys, Colton wants to transfer back east where he thinks he — and his sunbleached hair and deep tan — would be more anonymous.
At the big luau Colton gets two shirts ruined by Eden, then complains that he’s down to his last clean oxford-cloth buttondown. So much for blending in with the locals. — CC
You probably heard there was a fight last night. I don’t understand the $100 million payouts, so don’t even try to explain them to me.
Pictured above is Muhammad Ali in the blistering combination of buttondown and what looks to be undarted sportcoat.
Thanks to Jon Rodriguez on Twitter for tweeting it to me, as well as to Dominik Clemens Fox in a Facebook discussion yesterday for emphasizing that during the heyday Ivy exerted an influence on men’s fashion as a whole, whether or not the wearers were aware of it.
Below, another blistering combination from the man born Cassius Clay. — CC (Continue)
As we approach our 1,200th post, I suppose it’s inevitable that we start recycling things every once in a while. It offers those of us who’ve been here all along to revisit certain topics (I’m certainly at the stage where I’ve forgotten half the stuff on here), while giving new readers the chance to see things they might have missed.
This post originally ran in May of 2009, and came up in conversation the other day with friend and colleague Bruce Boyer, mostly apropos of college mating rituals. Given that it’s springtime I thought it worth reposting, and the contrast in music from then (highbrow avant-garde) to now (twerking lowbrow) still fascinates. — CC
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As a follow-up to our previous post on George Hamilton, Ivy-Style looks at 1960’s “Where the Boys Are,” in which Hamilton plays a rich college boy on Spring Break in Fort Lauderdale at the dawn of the Sexual Revolution. (Continue)
This morning Ivy Style awoke to a tweet from Warren Bingham giving us a head’s up about a great article in the latest issue of Charlotte Magazine. Entitled “Penny Loafers And Alligator Belts” and written by Cole Waddell, it recounts his time in the early ’60s working in the university department at men’s store Tate-Brown.
Here’s a snippet:
The University department sold suits, blazers, sport coats, neckties, and the essentials for campus wear: Gold Cup socks, sweaters, London Fog outerwear, khaki pants, Gant button-down shirts, madras shirts, alligator belts, and, of course, Bass Weejuns penny loafers. This was many years before college males adopted blue jeans, T-shirts, baseball caps, and running shoes. Looking back at old issues of The Yackety Yack, the UNC yearbook, the men look neat and well-dressed, with their short hair and campus wear.
The style of dress was initially called Ivy League fashion, supposedly the preferred style at Harvard, Yale, and Princeton. It would eventually be labeled “preppy.” Years later, ads for Polo Ralph Lauren evoke memories of those clothes.
At college, I wore penny loafers, until one day I saw a classmate from New York wearing a different type of loafer. His had a metal piece across the top. I didn’t know him well enough to ask about them, and it being the 1960s, I didn’t have a camera on a cell phone to sneak a picture of them. Without a photograph, I tried to describe the shoes as I asked around Charlotte. My inquiries were futile: People gave me strange looks and a few snarky suggestions. A few years later, I would learn that my school chum had good taste in shoes; he had been wearing the basic, classic Gucci horsebit loafer. Made in Italy. Sold in the Gucci store on Fifth Avenue in New York. I remember my delight when I obtained my first pair years later.