Lit

Papa’s Pennies

Penny loafers: suitable for everyone, including old bearded men who like safari-hunting, sea-fishing, arm-wrestling, bullfighting and hard drinking. Shout-out to longtime comment-leaver “Old School” for submitting this great photo. — CC Addendum: photo info:  “Ernest Hemingway at his standing writing desk on the balcony of Bill Davis’s home near Malaga where he wrote The Dangerous Summer.”

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Holiday Party Footwear: Jay Butler’s Low-Vamp Bit Loafers

As you gear up for holiday parties and prepare to break out the Black Watch tartan and other festive items, here’s another footwear option. Those who aren’t fans of velvet slippers might want to take a look at the bit loafers by Jay Butler. Founded by Justin Jeffers, an enterprising young man in Pennsylvania, the

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From The Archives

Better Things: Rogers Peet & Co.

Rogers Peet was inducted into the halls of Americana with the song “Marry The Man Today” from the 1950 musical, “Guys & Dolls.” The lyrics tout the clothier as among “the better things: respectable, conservative and clean,” in company with the likes of Readers’ Digest, Guy Lombardo, golf, galoshes and Ovaltine. That may befit the

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The Bruce Boyer True Style Study Group

Today is the publication date for “True Style: The History And Principles Of Classic Menswear,” the latest collection of essays by Bruce Boyer. There’s a chapter called “Ivy Style,” and as I was preparing to choose a passage to quote, I got a text message from the Millennial Fogey to meet him at our neighborhood coffee


W. David Marx On How Japan Saved American Trad

In September, 2010, I was watching my old cordovan oxfords get polished at Tokyo’s “shoeshine bar” Brift H, when a middle-aged man walked in and pulled out an original 1965 print of “Take Ivy.” The book had not only been autographed by all four authors, but also had a rare printing error. I leaned over


Love Stinks: Campus Trigger Warnings For Hopeless Romantics

Lately there’s been much talk about trigger warnings on college campuses. Some professors now feel pressured into putting cautions on centuries-old works of literature that include scenes that could be upsetting for an ever-growing list of reasons. I modestly propose a new category of trigger warning, as I represent a marginalized minority group especially vulnerable


Wayward Preppies

This week I heard about a prime-time drama on Fox called “Wayward Pines” featuring a preppy with a wayward-fitting school blazer. Apparently the show has a sci-fi theme. I’ve actually been on a sci-fi kick lately since watching a movie called “Predestination,” based on a story by Robert Heinlein. I got a collection of his



The Preppy And The Trout

Here’s the book that was mentioned in the comments thread on the Sweet Briar post. “The Preppy And The Trout” by Richard Reichardt was published (self-published?) in 2011. The synopsis reads: Set in the glamorous resort town of Sun Valley/Ketchum, Idaho, the story revolves around a young, insecure, former lacrosse star who owns a fly-fishing


This Pen For Hire: The Murakami J. Press Stories

Tokyo-based Ivy Style contributor W. David Marx, whose book on the history of Ivy in Japan comes out later this year, recently wrote about the advertorial pieces famed novelist Haruki Murakami penned for J. Press: In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Onward spent massive sums on advertising J. Press in the print media. The


John Cheever Wore Size-Six Weejuns

Faithful reader “Old School” alerted us to this piece in the New York Review of Books by a former disciple of the great author. It discloses Cheever’s shoe size: Blue-and-white-striped Brooks Brothers shirt, unpressed khakis. John Cheever wore size-six Weejuns. (You know? I’ve always wanted to write that! For its interior rhymes, for its being


100 Years Of Menswear

Laurence King Publishing has just released a new edition of “100 Years Of Menswear” by Cally Blackman. Steve McQueen graces the cover, in Harrington jacket, cashmere v-neck and white buttondown. Inside, however, there’s not much else to interest you. While the first half of the book, devoted to the first part of the century, features




Literary Voice: The George Plimpton Documentary

George Plimpton certainly had pedigree. His father was “a successful corporate lawyer who became the American ambassador to the United Nations,” the New York Times noted in his obituary. “The family traced its roots in this country to the Mayflower. He was educated at Phillips Exeter Academy, Harvard and Cambridge.” This pedigree no doubt accounted


John Updike, Style Icon

Recently GQ said John Updike was in as a style icon while Jack Kerouac was all washed up and played out. And last week the magazine’s web site put up a slideshow. No new images for you guys perhaps, but maybe for the younger and/or less literate out there. Remains to be seen if fashion


100 Years Of Stover At Yale

Perhaps because he’s a football player, Dink Stover has been at Yale for a hundred years. Hey, the real world is coarse and common, would you want to leave? One hundred years ago this month Owen Johnson published his college novel “Stover At Yale,” which is long on novel but short on college. I attempted


Hit The Road: Kerouac Out, Updike In

A sign of civilization in an age where the edgy, extreme and downright trashy are lauded daily, the April issue of GQ encourages readers to “kill their style icons,” and suggests trading Jack Kerouac for John Updike. Kerouac went to Columbia, but was too bohemian to dress Ivy League. Updike, on the other hand, went


The Man in the Brooks Brothers Shirt

For Ivy Style’s 300th post, London-based contributor Rebecca C. Tuite examines the most important piece of literature about The Ivy League Look’s most important brand. There is little doubt that Mary Mccarthy’s short story “The Man in the Brooks Brothers Shirt” is now probably more famous for its punchy title — a dream for the


No Picture

Buttoned-Down Beatnik: Ginsberg Biopic “Howl” Gets Sept. Release

A few months ago I heard about the Allen Ginsberg biopic “Howl,” and asked the production company if there were any upcoming screenings. There weren’t, as the film had yet to find a distributor. It’s got one now, and is scheduled for release on September 24. The film focuses on the poet’s 1957 obscenity trial


Bohemian in a Sack Suit: The 1959 Brooks Brothers Novel

For Ivy-Style’s 200th post, I thought I’d break out something special I’ve been sitting on for awhile. Last year, between Los Angeles and New York, I spent six months in my old environs of the Bay Area, including five weeks staying with a former flame (now married to a Hungarian who lost his baronetcy in


JD Salinger, 1919-2010

Don’t things like this usually come in threes? Click here for The Washington Post‘s coverage.


Louis Auchincloss, 1917-2010

Louis Auchincloss, author of prep-school classic “The Rector of Justin,” plus many novels and stories set among New York’s Old Money, died Tuesday night. The New York Times‘ coverage is here. And from 2008, The Washington Post‘s book critic Jonathan Yardley looks back on “Justin.”