1990-present

Twilight in the West: Brooks Shutters LA Store After 71 Years

Earlier this week, Brooks Brothers closed its store in Downtown Los Angeles, where it had maintained a presence since 1939. The LA Downtown News (which I used to do some writing for), covered the closing, writing: Claudio Del Vecchio, the chairman and CEO of New York-based Brooks Brothers, said the store closed because the company


A Second Look at Take Ivy, Ivy Illustrated and the OPH

Compared to Western fashion magazines, Japanese magazines often get very specific about how to achieve a certain look. Editors and stylists do not just play with themes, as with most fashion editorial, but painstakingly recreate the exact styling from definitive fashion guides and personages. In its February 2010 issue, Japanese weekend wear magazine 2nd decided


Deadstock Chipp Pocket Squares At Their 1980 Price

One of the great things about visiting Paul Winston is that you never know what he’s going to break out for show and tell. The other day Paul pulled out a stack of several dozen deadstock Chipp pocket squares he’d recently found stashed away somewhere. He figures they must be 30 years old, give or


Brooks Brothers Fall/Winter 2010

Yesterday Bruce Boyer and I visited Brooks Brothers, who were showing the Fall/Winter 2010 collection on the sixth floor of the 346 Madison flagship store. The goods represented the company’s growing commitment to reclaiming its heritage, and there were many nods to its golden age in addition to the new girls and home collections. Though


Tribal Factions: The WASP vs. The Trad

Nomenclature in Tradsville is a tricky thing, and depends largely on your point of view. Those who like hair-splitting will tell you that a short-sleeved gingham shirt is Trad but not Preppy. Likewise, bit loafers are WASPy but not Ivy. Fair points to an extent, though it gets tedious pretty fast, and bloggers and forum


The College Man’s Guide to Life

Our recent J. Press scarf giveaway yielded many pearls of wisdom in the comments section, the best of which form a veritable handbook on deportment for the young man just embarking on life’s adventure, which usually begins when he heads off to college. While studies and girls will be your main concern (they were certainly


Penny Lane: New Sebago Loafers For Spring

For spring, Sebago has released its classic penny loafer in new colors and with a roughed-out sole and stacked heel. Colors include navy (evidently the hot new shoe color, for reasons Reason can’t explain), sand, white, and light brown (pictured). The shoes are available now from Sebago’s website and sell for $130. Click here and


ENK Show Recap: Allen Edmonds, Harvard Yard, DS Dundee

As promised, a few notes on the ENK menswear trade show held last week. For spring and fall, Allen Edmonds will be bringing out a number of updated shoes in the trad category. Three of them are highlighted above, while all six are in the photo below (apologies for the bad shot).


Putting My Ass on the Line to Save Harvard

Harvard’s financial troubles have been well publicized. The university also made news several months ago when it was announced that it had licensed its name for a contemporary fashion collection called Harvard Yard, and was criticized for selling out its name for a frivolous new revenue stream. Earlier this week, Wearwolf Group, the company that


Designer Forum New York Recap

This weekend I attended Designer Forum New York, a menswear trade show sponsored by the Custom Tailors and Designers Association, the oldest trade organization in the US. The event allowed me to finally meet two cyber-colleagues in person: Ivy-Style contributor Zachary DeLuca and author G. Bruce Boyer. Meanwhile, the clothes on display (such as the


The Prodigy: Robert I. Brown, 16-Year-Old Style Blogger

Young men who came of age during the heyday of the Ivy League Look could largely rely on their peers for sartorial guidance. By the ’80s, things were much different, and the budding man of style had to rely increasingly on books, magazines and movies. But today’s young men, who’ve never known life without the


Class of ’16: Great-Grandpa’s Raccoon Coat

How many posts are we going to do on raccoon coats? Answer: as long as we keep getting fresh material, which in this case was supplied by Yale undergrad Riley Ford, who wore his great-granddad’s coonskin coat to The Game. Yeah, we realize that was six weeks ago: The kid had to finish finals. For


Puff Piece

I’ve been planning to do a post on pipes for some time, and finally have the perfect excuse: a short blog post on pipes I recently did for the New York Times style section. The assignment gave me an excuse to visit the city’s few remaining tobacconists, of which the Art Deco-era Nat Sherman was


Brooks Brothers’ Swingin’ Christmas Party

Last night Brooks Brothers held a Christmas bash at its flagship 346 Madison Avenue store. The event drew hundreds, with shopping proceeds benefitting St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital. On the third floor, Wynton Marsalis (pictured at left) and members of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, who are dressed by Brooks Brothers, played swinging renditions of


Socks Appeal: In Praise of Marled Hosiery

Some time ago I ran a post praising the combo of light socks and loafers. Since then marled socks have become my favorite kind for this look. They’ve got a great casual vibe for pairing with chinos and loafers, but I also dig them with trousers, tassels and tie. I spied these the other day


A Tour of Brooks Brothers’ Boston Store

Video clip about Brooks Brothers’ store on Newbury Street in Boston. Fans of puckered oxford-cloth will no doubt cringe at the store manager’s remark that non-iron shirts are “one of the greatest innovations in fashion.”


Prep Membership Card: The LL Bean Norwegian Sweater

In the 1980s, I would stroll through the oak grove of my small college campus clad in a well worn pair of chinos, cream-colored turtleneck, a pink Brooks oxford and an LL Bean Norwegian Sweater. I was confident in believing I had found the perfect sweater that would be around forever. Boy was I wrong.


A LIFE in Brief: The Kennedy Clan

On newsstands now is one of those book-like magazines LIFE puts out when someone important dies — in this case, Edward Kennedy. “The Kennedys: End of a Dynasty” provides plenty of photos and family history for those who don’t want to wade through a full biography. I especially liked this photo of JFK from 1946.


Making the Grade + LL Bean’s Town & Field Pant

Of all the background characters in “Making the Grade” — without a doubt the most tradly attired movie of all time — the guy on right is probably my favorite. He’s only on screen for a few seconds and has two words of dialogue, but what an impression. He’s certainly a lot cooler than the


GI Bill: Mr. Thomas and His Postwar Khakis

Bruce Boyer herein presents his first piece for Ivy-Style, an interview with Bill Thomas of Bill’s Khakis. Khakis and jeans are the iconic American work pants, both having been around for over a century but coming into global status after World War II. The democratizing effect of these trousers — everyone from top CEOs and


Robert Bryan’s “American Fashion Menswear”

Last week the New York Times blog ran a piece on the new book “American Fashion Menswear,” by Robert E. Bryan, former men’s fashion director for the Times. As the book includes chapters on both The Ivy League Look and dandyism, the publisher asked me to read the manuscript. Adding to the honor was a


Ivy Trendwatch: Danish Modern

OK, I think it’s time to accept that this Ivy-is-the-new-preppy thing may be much bigger than we expected. You know that’s the case when European artists start getting in on it. Close Up And Private is a “photo project” (I couldn’t tell if it was a clothing line or an online magazine, and apparently it’s


Ivy Trendwatch: GQ’s “Prep Yourself”

I think this how-to video from GQ is zeitgeisty enough to qualify for our Ivy Trendwatch news beat. I spied it the other day on the blog Unabashedly Prep and thought it worth presenting here. The video is from a series of 30 episodes called GQ Rules that purport how to teach you to be


Five Years of Trad

Five years ago today a man who goes under the username Harris posted these immortal words on the Ask Andy About Clothes forum: I live in the Northeastern US and tend towards the American Look. Or trad or whatever you wish to call it. Sack suits, tassel loafers, shetland crewnecks, Harris Tweeds, madras, etc. I


Makers’ Mark: Brooks Brothers Fall 2009 Catalog

The new “Makers and Merchants” Brooks Brothers catalog hitting mailboxes this week is like a mini magazine that combines dressing advice with company history and brand positioning. Much seems to stem from a desire for Brooks to annouce its new domestic manufacturing program in the wake of the Southwick acquisition. The catalog features two undarted,


No Picture

Disco Revival: Whit Stillman on Life and Film

Whit Stillman’s 1998 film “The Last Days of Disco” was released this week, the last of his three films to make it to DVD. Several articles and interviews have hit the web as a result. Time Out New York has a short interview with Stillman, in which he talks about why he hasn’t made a