WASPdom

Confronting The Shadow: The Preppy’s Dark Alter-Ego, The Bro

There’s a guy you probably encounter on a regular basis. Sometimes it seems like he’s right over your shoulder, following you. He kind of looks like you. He has a neat haircut. He wears khakis and boat shoes. On festive summer occasions he’ll wear patch-madras shorts and polo shirts in bright, go-to-hell colors. When he

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From The Archives

The Non-Iron Oxford 50 Years Ago

For your consideration, a 1966 advertisement for non-iron oxford-cloth buttondowns, presented non-ironically. Convenient for impromtu games of touch football and expanding waistlines due to heavy meals. Happy Thanksgiving fom Ivy Style. Tomorrow our club tie goes on sale! — CC

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In His Own Words: Audio Clip Of Holloway Denying WASP 101

Update, 7 June, 11:55 AM: Camel City Dispatch has the latest minor developments on the story. Update, 4 June, 10:23 AM: WRAL has pressed Representative Holloway on the WASP 101 story, who has said he’s just another man in a Brooks Brothers tie: Monday night, offered the chance to reconsider his denial, Holloway declined. “I’ve


Is WASP 101 Blogger North Carolina State Rep?

Last night Ivy-Style.com was informed of strange similarities between “Richard,” the author of the WASP 101 blog (above) and Bryan R. Holloway (below), who is serving his fifth term as a Republican state representative of the 91st district in North Carolina. Thirty-five-year-old Holloway is the son of a chicken farmer and teacher’s assistant and is


The Great Gatsby And Old Money Versus New

First published April 10, 1925, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby” gripped the American imagination and, almost a century later, has yet to relinquish its hold. Its personal, poignant narrative, fatally flawed but perfectly drawn characters, and ability to capture a particular place and time set it apart in 20th century American literature. The story


The Reluctant WASP: George Will On William Zinsser

In his column yesterday for the Washington Post, George Will discusses William Zinsser and the craft of writing, making a passing reference to J. Press and the formality still observed by old-school WASPs such as Zinsser: Tooting his own trumpet is not the style of this self-effacing and decorous WASP, who never leaves his Manhattan


Style Over Substance: The Decline Of Preppy Values

Last week Susan Cheever, daughter of legendary WASPdom chronicler John Cheever and a celebrated author in her own right, wrote a piece for Newsweek entitled “Gin Without The Tonic.” The URL of the digital version explains the theme a little less cryptically: http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2012/08/05/how-modern-preppies-got-the-style-but-forgot-the-values.html The theme of Cheever’s essay — that the uber-rich of today are


Poised Or Oblivious? The True Essence Of Prep

This weekend columnist Mark Oppenheimer penned an essay about prepdom for Salon that’s pegged on Whit Stillman’s new movie “Damsels In Distress.” The piece is more thoughtful than the usual stuff that gets said about the cultural phenomenon known as preppy. Oppenheimer’s thesis is that preppy is more than a style of dress. This you


Uncommon Bonds: New WASP 101 Tumblr

As noted before with the now-defunct tumblr Rich White People, the fast-growing image-driven blog format provides its style-junky curators with the ideal platform for presenting a context-free visual blitzkrieg. Otherwise unrelated photos are thrown together into a collage whose cumulative effect is a personal statement about the site creator’s taste. Depending on how you look


Happy Hanukkah From Ivy Style

On this, the first day of Hanukkah, Ivy-Style.com sends glad tidings to the unsung heroes of the Ivy League Look: the many Jewish clothiers that catered to the Protestant Establishment and taught generations of young men the virtues of a natural shoulder and how to dress like an American gentleman. Despite the popular admonition “Dress



P-Unit Forever: Behind the Scenes of Tea Partay

OK, you just read the headline, saw the embedded video, and you’re snickering. Let me explain. When I founded this site, I vowed never to post the Smirnoff “Tea Partay” video, which had become infamous in the online world of Tradsville. But I recently began covering digital marketing for Yahoo!, and found myself chatting with


That Stings! The First WASP-Free Supreme Court

President Obama’s nomination of Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court set off a flurry of decline-of-the-WASP articles in major media outlets this week. If Kagan is confirmed, the formerly 100 percent WASP Supreme Court will not have a single Protestant, something to mourn or celebrate, depending on your point of view. Writes the Wall Street


Friends in High Places: “Cheerful Money” Reviewed

Very belatedly I’m finally getting around to a post on Tad Friend’s “Cheerful Money: Me, My Family, and the Last Days of WASP Splendor,” which was released last year. Like the tribe of WASPs itself, Friend and his book have an even amount of vices and virtues. Tad Friend is a staff writer at The


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