Ivy Notes S1E3

The young Mr. Andre on his 12th birthday.

I am struggling with this myself.  With Gramercy.  Last night a member of the FB group posted a picture of Mr. Andre here, who has, on his 12th birthday, started experimenting.  With Ivy clothes.  As I understand it there was a journey through sweatpants here.  But now we have arrived home.  I cannot say the same thing.  Getting your kids to do what you want falls into three categories.  (1) stuff they absolutely must do because you are their parents, (2) stuff you would like them to do but respect or personal freedom fences in your scope and (3) stuff you have no right to ask them to do.   Time is probably the answer.  Anyway, if there are tips on how to steer your children Ivy, let me know.  Other than setting an example.  And Happy Birthday Andre, you look very handsome, and if you continue to comport yourself this way it will serve you well.  Bravo.

I have the personal and educational pleasure of chatting Ivy with Evan Everhart quite a bit.  Reprinted with his permission here is his conversational review of the Sid Mashburn OCBD he bought:

The shirt feels as good as my deadstock brooks one that’s unopened! Its collar is a bit wider spread and not quite as steeply pointed at the tips, but the collar roll is gorgeous as worn, just not as spearpointed when unbuttoned. It does however sit very handsomely as worn unbuttoned and over the collar of my crewneck saddle shouldered Shetland sweaters (Ive tried it with several of them for surety of consistency of fit), and it always looks handsome, regardless of how heavy a gauge or ply the wool of the respective sweaters. The starching is nice, and not excessive… It is a light boiled starch such as should wash out within one to two normal washes, the cotton fibres feel at first wear to be firm, but not stiff or cardboard-like, as some other Makers’ OCBDs, in my experience are, or rather, can be, up to a high wash count….but that, is for another review….
Mr. Everhart in the aforementioned.
Back to the review; I would say that the collar is similar to the vtg Brooks spread collared OCBD, which was essentially an Ainsley collar as an OCBD, there is a gauntlet button on the sleeves of the shirt, unlike a Brooks OCBD which has the button down toward the bottom edge of the cuff, the cuff button of the Mashburn OCBD, is distinctly centered on the cuff. The quality of the cut and fabric is excellent, the collar rolls well, particularly if you wear Mashburn or vtg or newer Drakes ties, which are minimally lined. There is a central box pleat, of course. It is a must iron shirt, and of course develops wrinkles as worn, which hang out if allowed to, quite quickly. Its a Lovely Oxford cloth, the tails of the shirt are quite long, as they ought to be, anyway, but this will be particularly useful for those who persist in wearing trousers which do not rise properly, such as those sold by Mashburn & Co. The final charming detail which Ill cite here, is the horizontal buttonhole at the bottom of the button placket of the shirt. The shirt does have a breast pocket. For those who don’t like breast pockets, its probably not an issue for you anyway, as I doubt you’ll be buying alpha sized garments anyway, for those who appreciate this sort of mid range shirt but in gorgeous fabrics and rare colors… These fit the bill and you can store yr cigarettes or comb or pen in yr breast pocket, as I do. I hope you’ll enjoy one too!
Now, back to the most Excellent Sid Mashburn OCBD, so much for it, if PRL Alpha sizing fits you consistently, this will too, its a bit trimmer than a PRL classic fit, but not excessively so. I wear between a 15.5 and 16 in the neck, usually, and a 33 or 34 in the sleeve, usually, depending on the maker and my body’s volume at any given moment. So much for that, in these Sid Mashburn OCBDs, I wear a “M”, just as in the PRL alpha sized sporty dress shirts with which we are all, I am sure, well familiar.
Actually as the Mashburn OCBD has both a semi spread Ainsley style similar to the Clifford and a collar Roll, it is indeed a different creature all together!  And as a final note, at $125., and with alpha sizing, the shirts while not necessarily for everyone, are very nice in that the Oxford cloth is beefy and soft and primarily for me, it is offered in as close to an authentic Brooks green as I’ve seen on a non Brooks shirt, in some years.
Finally, check this out.  Author and Ivy Historian Marc Chevalier and friends recreated impromptu at a formal gathering this historic image:
Mr. Chevalier et al
Mr. Stewart et al

11 Comments on "Ivy Notes S1E3"

  1. Evan Everhart | January 18, 2022 at 10:12 am |

    Hi John! Please do share the photograph of me wearing the green Mashburn shirt which I previously sent you! The readers/viewers may as well know how these shirts fit, which is quite as well as the new Brooks alphas fit, and with the added benefit of being available in a solid green, whereas the new Bastian Brooks green shirts are only available in a striped green and white university striped model (hint-hint), Brooks & J. Press, PLEASE DO make a solid green OCBD!!!!!!!

  2. Evan Everhart | January 18, 2022 at 10:13 am |

    *Including fully size University Striped AND Solid Green OCBDs! Please! There IS a DEFINITE Demand for green OCBDs!

  3. When I was young Mr. Andre’s age, the school I went to *forced* us to dress similarly to the way he is pictured dressing (ties had to be repp striped). I did not enjoy that at the time, but it’s funny how tastes change. He is a very snappy dresser.
    Re: Mr. Everhart’s review, I’ll enthusiastically second the demand for more solid green oxford cloth button downs.

  4. Charlottesville | January 18, 2022 at 1:50 pm |

    Happy birthday and very best wishes to Mr. Andre. Quite the dapper dresser.

    I wish I could order a couple of tab collars from that Brooks Brothers catalog. They are hard to find these days, especially at $8.50. And the short “Clifford” button-down collar is interesting to note. I used to have one, which I bought by mistake not knowing that BB offered such a thing. Still not my cup of Earl Gray, but clearly not a modern upstart. The club (golf) collar is also nice to see.

    For those who think that a green shirt cannot be Ivy, I note that the shirt in Mary McCarthy’s 1941 story “The Man in the Brooks Brothers Shirt” was green. I think it was said to have been custom made and the wearer was a cad, but the shirt was nevertheless green and came from Brooks 81 years ago, at least according to Ms. McCarthy. In fact, I have a green OCBD from Brooks and another in a green stripe which both came off the shelf some years ago. While they may not get as much wear as the white, blue and pink ones, they are still nice to have.

    And lastly, my hat is off to Mr. Chevalier and friends. Just like being at Romanoff’s in 1957. Cheers, gentlemen.

  5. whiskeydent | January 18, 2022 at 2:09 pm |

    How does the shirt fit through the body and hips? I have a boxy build (hips almost as wide as the shoulders) and today’s trimmer cuts often don’t fit me well. Brooks Regent, Spier and Macay and Proper Cloth are three that don’t fit me well in the torso.

  6. Jesse Livermore | January 18, 2022 at 2:29 pm |

    Mercer sells a green OCBD.

  7. Mr. Andre, Mr. Everhart, Mr. Chevalier, Mr. Stewart, et al., all look fantastic. Perhaps there is hope for western civilization after all.

    Concerning the other-than-white OCBD. Not rules perhaps, but any guidance on how to wear one? The green with the greenish tweed looks great, but I would never have considered it. What is the primary objective? To reduce contrast? And to confuse the issue even more, the blue suit/blue shirt/blue tie thing (with tan shoes) seems to be fashionable, but I do not care for it at all. Is it just me? One more thing, there for awhile was a beige or off-white OCBD. How could that look like anything other than a dirty shirt?

    Off topic, but I notice that in the photo of Mr. Andre, the establishment provides club chairs for their customers. That is so much better than sitting at a booth, especially if you get stuck in the middle of one of those round ones. Which is more Ivy?

  8. Minimalist Trad | January 18, 2022 at 9:40 pm |

    How fortunate those of us who only wear white OCBDs are!

    Agreed – JB

  9. W. Adam Mandelbaum | January 18, 2022 at 11:28 pm |

    Mr. Andre looks like he’s headed to a client meeting at an Estates and Trusts Law Firm. Bravo kiddo!

    I don’t know why but this comment makes me laugh harder every time I read it. – JB

  10. Seeing the photo on a bigger screen, I must amend my earlier comment: Mr. Andre’s style is far more sophisticated than the usual school blazer and tie getup I wore at his age, as evidenced by the Bengal stripes and the much nicer shoes. (Looked like a blue OCBD on my phone screen.) Happy birthday.

  11. Nevada,
    I agree. And very little to no break, and not too much taper at the hem of his trousers, ergo, no cloth puddles.

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