1990-present

Whale Of A Tale: The Preppiest Office In America

Yesterday I had a long discussion with a writer from Put This On about the waxing and waning of Ivy and prep over the decades. One of the topics was how watered-down the term “preppy” has become in the mainstream media. Emphasis on water. Yesterday Bloomberg.com put up a video segment on what it called


Riding High: Sebago’s New Crest Collection

This spring Sebago will unveil a new premium collection called Crest. Here’s what the company has to say in a press release: This collection for men reinvents Sebago’s iconic styles with new polished details and rich materials. The handmade collection features beautiful leather hide selections and supple sheepskin underfoot for incredible comfort. Crest represents the


Keys To Success: Country Club Prep Hits Year Three

The PITA tree — that’s preppy-Ivy-trad-Americana (haven’t used that in a while) — is a century old. Its roots are deep, and now matter how hard the fickle winds of fashion blow, the tree stands strong. Without belaboring the metaphor, the PITA tree’s branches bend and twist with each new generation, and future historians of


The Polo Flagship’s New Haberdashery Section

Two weeks ago, the Polo flagship on Fifth Avenue, which opened last fall, created a new section in the store called the Haberdashery. It’s where you’ll find all the ties, dress shirts and cashmere sweaters — and all in the spring colors you’re anxious to wear. There are also plenty of sportcoats in spring fabrics,


Even Traditional Customers Like Something Fresh

Yesterday, while we were posting about Brooks Brothers’ home collection, another publication posted about the brand in a much more far-reaching way. Billionaire.com presented an interview with Luca Gastaldi, CEO of Brooks for Europe, The Middle East and Africa. As far as the big picture goes, this is the choice passage: “It’s a good thing


Pillow Talk

Last night I put up a post on Masculine Interiors entitled “The Man In The Brooks Brothers Home.” It featured a selection of home items offered at Brooks, including shirting-inspired bed sheets. The post also included rep-striped pillows, and soon after I received several messages from guys who didn’t even know they existed. They do.


Why, Oh Why? News Roundup + 1950s Ivy Doo-Wop

We start the week off with a rather motley miscellany. Above, a 1958 novelty tune called “Ivy League Clothes” from a little-known doo-wop group called The Gaylarks. Damned if I can tell what the hell they’re singing about, save for “why, oh why?” Something about Ivy for girls. It’s from a time when the trunk


Maine Event: New US-Made Bass Weejuns

  Last week Bass unveiled some new models of Maine-made Weejuns. Priced at $295, they are made from Horween leather and come both with and without beefroll. I’d attended a Bass spring preview back in October, but I don’t recall these shoes being ready then. But here’s what else caught my eye, which should be



Brooks Brothers Fall 2015 Preview

I was unable to attend last week’s Brooks Brothers preview as I was battling a virus — a computer virus. So I’m falling back onto Women’s Wear Daily for the coverage. Writes the paper: At Brooks Brothers, Harris tweeds, soft tailoring that enables layering, an “into-the-woods” color palette and unorthodox pairings are some predominant messages


Black History Month: The Guys Of Ivy’s Facebook Group

I’m rather proud of the fact that Ivy Style, to the best of my knowledge, is the only preppy site on the web to regularly honor Black History Month. After all, as I often point out, it was my piece on Miles Davis and the Andover Shop for RL Magazine that inspired me to launch


Battle Of The Wits Contest: What Does The Ivy League Smell Like?

Recently I was investigating manly candles (mandles?) because that’s the sort of important thing you do when you start working the home accessories beat. I discovered an apparently now-discontinued line of scented candles that were sold at Neiman Marcus. Although the brand had the silly name of Many Indulgence, the different scents had fun names


The Art Of Patricia van Essche

I think I’m not the only one here who has a fondness for the art of fashion illustration, from the legendary work of Laurence Fellows for Esquire and Apparel Arts to the Japanese artists who fill each issue of Free & Easy. This afternoon Town & Country magazine tweeted a post about artist Patricia van


The Ghost Of 346 Madison

Daniel C. Greenwood’s debut Millenial Fogey column on Brooks Brothers certainly stirred up discussion. It especially stirred up Chris Sharp, Ivy Style’s normally circumspect and disinterested assistant editor, known for his well researched historical pieces. He found himself inspired to lay his heart bare to the brand so dear to him that he recalls shopping


The Editorial Meeting

Yesterday afternoon Ivy-Style.com held an editorial meeting at The Polo Bar, Ralph Lauren’s new restaurant. In attendance were Golden Years columnist Richard Press, Ivy Style founder Christian Chensvold, and Daniel Greenwood, who was filled with bourbon and coerced into becoming a more regular contributor to the site, based on his passionate interest in the wares


Introducing MasculineInteriors.com

0 When I was two-and-a-half years old, my father finished his Air Force commission and we left Berlin. We initially landed at my grandparents’ place in San Francisco, and there, while walking up the stairs of this strange new building, as my mother would tell me many years later, I uttered one of my earliest


Palm Beach Prep For The Masses

It’s absolutely freezing here in New York, which means if you’re anybody who’s anybody (like my old publisher at Quest magazine), you’ve been in your Palm Beach property since Thursday evening. But don’t be surprised if the sartorial distinction between the help and the in-season residents on Worth Avenue starts to narrow: Lilly Pulitzer now


To The Future

J. Press sent out a mailer today with the words “to the future” that aroused my curiosity. Word through the grapevine is that things have been changing among Onward Kashiyama management, and the company currently has a want ad running for someone to research international fashion trends. I asked Onward for comment last month, but


Market Specialist

Research international fashion trends for J. Press. From job ad currently running in the New York Times. (This post is not part of Cartoon Week.)


Pop-Up Flea Highlights

Last weekend was the Pop-Up Flea show, which has grown considerably. While mostly populated (yes, still) with a kind of hipster/workwear/urban lumberjack vibe, there were a few tradly items worth sharing.


Bartender, I’ll Have A Big Pony — And Make It A Double

Ralph Lauren recently launched a mobile coffee truck in Manhattan, and today the New York Times broke the news on his new restaurant, The Polo Bar. Scheduled to open later this month, it’s located just around the corner from the new Polo flagship on 5th Avenue. Quotes the article: Simon Doonan, an author and the


Bean Counter: Millennials Drive Boot Backorders Toward 100,000

In the 1980s, there was a trend at my high school in sunny California for LL Bean’s classic rubber boot, worn year-round, of course. Fashions come in cycles ever generation or so, and today the morning news is carrying the story that there are some 60,000 backorders for Bean boots, with another 40,000 expected by


Young Man With A Plan: Introducing Jay Butler Shoes

This week saw the launch of a new shoe and leather goods brand called Jay Butler. What makes a “fine young gentleman” like Justin Jeffers want to start a shoe business? You’re about to find out. — CC * * * IS: What in the world makes a young guy start a shoe company on


UK Ivy News Roundup

Several things are afoot in Ivyland across the pond. • First off, a new edition of “Hollywood And The Ivy Look” has garnered press in The Telegraph, where Hollywood is said to have had an “obsession” with the Ivy League Look. • Also in the press department, the John Simons shop got a write-up on


Knit Picking: The Brooks Brothers Dot-Knit Tie

In the previous post, the discussion broached the subject of knit ties. Fittingly, I had a post ready for that. Above is a new tie at Brooks Brothers which I spied in the store about a week ago. I plan to be wearing it incessantly throughout the season. Black flecked with blue (there are other


Party Pooper

Chris Hogan of Off The Cuff has just put up an all-you-can eat photo gallery from the “Rowing Blazers” party at the new Polo store. Spot the guy not in the spirit of things. I used to have a Ralph Lauren rowing blazer I’d wear to Gatsby parties back in California, but chose to instead


The Blair Stitch Project

The first day of fall corresponded with the first Christmas pitch to hit my inbox. It was from the direct-to-consumer needlepoint accessory purveyor Tucker Blair. Their soft-sell advertisement announced that custom monogramed items need to be order by Tuesday, September 30th, for guaranteed holiday delivery. For those who like to see how things are made,


Specs In The City

I brought my camera to the “Rowing Blazers” party last night at the new Polo flagship on Fifth Avenue, but the event was so packed taking pictures was too much trouble. That is until a certain bespectacled gentleman passed by, none other than Larry from The Andover Shop, who was down from Cambridge and looking


A Trad Among The Radicals

I spent a summer at Cal doing a French intensive. It’s the kind of crash-course where you walk in on the first day and don’t hear a word of English eight hours a day for the next 10 weeks (that’s right, they teach you French in French). By the end of the summer you can


The Shirt That Changed History, And How History Is Changing The Shirt

Today Brooks Brothers is running an online campaign for its buttondown “polo” collar shirts. The tagline is “the shirt that changed history” (it’s also running as “a shirt that changed history”). Introduced in 1896, within a couple of decades it was already the default shirt for style-setting college men in the Northeast, and on places