The Golden Years by Richard Press

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Golden Years: Cash-Sale Mayhem

This weekend J. Press, Brooks Brothers and many other menswear stalwarts launched their big summer sale, reminding me of the mayhem that would followed “cash sale” postcard mailings during the heyday of the Ivy League Look. In the area of Madison Avenue between 44th and 46th Streets — in front of Chipp, J. Press, Brooks


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Golden Years: Anything Goes in New Haven

Last night the Broadway revival of “Anything Goes,” which had received nine Tony nominations, ended up winning three. As I watched, I couldn’t help but remember one of the great historical anecdotes of J. Press: The time my grandfather Jacobi helped the musical’s composer Cole Porter evade the New Haven police. During a 1912 football


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Golden Years: Richard Press on Bleeding Madras

Pop-Up Prep, a multimedia fashion presentation of Tommy Hilfiger and Lisa Birnbach, popped up recently in Lower Manhattan with the slogan “Nothing proclaims preppy like patchwork madras print.” It should only be so easy. The history of the plaid cotton fabric dates back to the turn of the 20th century when it became an informal


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Golden Years: Richard Press On Neckties

A new proposal in New York would ban doctors from wearing neckties after a study revealed that the dangling strips of silk can transmit bacteria leading to infection. This would have been sad news back during the heyday, when J. Press sold many caduceus ties in colors appropriate to the Harvard and Yale medical schools.