Ivy Style recently received a dispatch from scholar Deirdre Clemente, who is busy doing groundbreaking research on the history of college students as consumers. In fact, she said her career might be made if she can get a paper into a certain scholarly journal. When they say academia is publish or perish, they’re not kidding.
Clemente presented at the MFIT’s “Ivy Style” symposium, and did a piece for us years ago on Princeton, which is one of her specialties.
Now she sends the excerpt below, which has us wondering if Princeton guys essentially wrote the rulebook for dressing Ivy. Here they are credited with popularizing the wearing of brown odd jackets with grey flannel trousers in 1929. It’s from an April, 1935 passage in a publication called the Fashion Group Bulletin. According to Clemente, “You rarely get an exact date for a trend like this.”
Of course this was much more than a trend, but one of the cornerstones of the Ivy genre ever since. As we explored in the recent rise and fall essay, wearers of the Ivy League Look may owe more to style-setting Princetonians from the inter-war years than we thought. — CC