Ivy Notes S2-E4

Our own Marc Chevalier gives us a bit of Ivy Trivia:

“… here is how all Brooks Brothers OCBD shirts were designed before Garfinckel’s took over Brooks Brothers in 1946.

All were in a pullover style, with four front buttons only, and a fifth buttonhole (larger than the four above it) to secure the shirt to a button on the inside front of the trousers’ waistband. Below the front placket, there is a type of kick pleat: its main purpose (thank you, Evan) is to offer more ease in pulling on and pulling off the shirt.”

Exhibit A



The abovereferenced pleat.


Malcom W. sent me an email with some great pictures in it so I got permission to share.  He writes, “I had a long talk with Paul Winston yesterday and told him some of the clothes his Dad Sid made for my father. We still have many of the sport coats. Love the striped one with the tie made to match.”  Here are the photos.  Enjoy.


If I hadn’t seen it I wouldn’t think it would work but it really does, right?


Santa should be sacred.


Finally, here in Bedford the weather is just weird.  BUT.  I am wearing my J. Press Baracuta G9 INTO THE GROUND.  A question for the collective wisdom (I think the answer is no but maybe I am wrong…).  So I wear it pretty much all day, and I like it so much I leave it on indoors when I can.  This is wrong, right?


Morning dog walk. If you click on the image you can see the jacket on J. Press’s site. That’s an Andover shirt, which you can buy here, and a Kent Wang tie which you can buy here.

18 Comments on "Ivy Notes S2-E4"

  1. I think you are correct. That circumstance does present a conundrum. Not so much if you’re hanging around the house.

  2. whiskeydent | October 26, 2022 at 8:36 am |

    Is your daughter tik tokking about her weird dad who wears his jacket in the house? Are you the laughingstock of the junior high? Do they have a dance for it yet?

  3. sandy wolcott | October 26, 2022 at 10:59 am |

    I would wear the jacket both inside and out. You wear a sweater both inside and out . Plus you are really for town wear and any rain.

  4. Fascinating history — thanks Marc Chevalier, I never knew that about the early Brooks shirts.

    I love Malcolm W’s Chipp jacket and tie, but I don’t think I could pull off wearing them together. Then again, …maybe I could?

    The weather is officially weird everywhere. But as long as the thermometer isn’t at the extremes, the G9 will never do you wrong.
    Nice to see some Kent Wang making an appearance, too. I really like their polos (size up) and sunglasses.

  5. John,
    I would surmise the question is whether you are one of those who refrain from putting on the heat in their house until November 1. My college freshman year roommate liked to turn down the thermostat in our room so he could sit in his easy chair and read while wearing a sweater and tweed jacket.

  6. Thanks to Mr. Chevalier for a bit of history. I’m the lucky/blessed inheritor of a couple of dozen Brooks OCBDs (“polo shirts) circa the late 1970s/early 1980s. That was the Paterson, NJ factory era, when the points were longer than earlier incarnations (around 3.75”) and the fit was roomy bordering on capacious. The oxford was heavy and the pockets were v-hemmed. They’re so good I’m tempted to introduce another acronym: BPNJOCBD (Brooks Paterson New Jersey Oxford Cloth Button Down).

    I’ll venture a guess Ralph Lauren used the BPNJOCBD for his first attempt (sans logo) at a soft collared OCBD: the Yarmouth.

    A lot changed after the Marks & Spencer buyout in the 80s.

  7. Great article Marc. Do you own that shirt? It is a grail item for many a Brooks fan.

    I agree with S.E. I’m wearing one of those BPNJOCBDs in pink and they are everything described. I even have a stack of the Ralph Lauren Yarmouths. Heavyweight and roomy. The only substantial difference between the two brands is that the Yarmouth’s collars are quite a bit shorter: around 3″. Like the Brooks heyday they came in a wide range of colors and stripes. I’ve seen them on ebay. Get them while they are still available.

    For both the shirt reviewed and the Yarmouth: as The Trad blog’s masthead says, “Not as good as it was, better than it will be.”

    • Carlton Chiswick | October 27, 2022 at 2:42 pm |

      The Ivy Style Site:

      Better than it was; not as good as it will be.

      • whiskeydent | October 27, 2022 at 5:21 pm |

        Borrowing from The Trad I see.

        • Carlton Chiswick | October 27, 2022 at 10:49 pm |

          Trad’s motto was pessimistic; he was describing the style and the merchandise then available.
          My comment was optimistic; I was describing this site. (John prefers not to call it a blog).
          John has given us good cause to be optimistic about the site.
          Considering the range of quality chinos and OCBDs currently available, I’m also optimistic about the style itself.

      • John Burton | October 27, 2022 at 5:36 pm |

        LOVE THIS.

  8. “Not as good as it was, better than it will be.“

    Legendary. I had been searching for years for a simple, short, pithy catchphrase to summarize old-fashioned Burkean traditionalist conservatism ;
    (neither major political party represents this credo/perspective). When I read that for the first time, I thought, “Yep — That’s it.” WFBJr’s “Standing athwart history, yelling ‘Stop!’” is a close second.

  9. Your jacket appears to lack traditional plaid lining. Is this due to an odd camera angle, a post-purchase modification, or a special option only available to the high-powered?

  10. The old Brooks placket description is interesting. Polo has actually made oxford shirts just like that in recent years and I did not realize that Ralph was doing a historic throwback.

    I have one of the Polo shirts and it never made sense to me. It is not as sporty as a usual popover where the placket ends like a sport shirt, and it is not as refined as a dress shirt. Unless the last button hits you just right, it just ends up looking like an odd pleat right where you do not want to accentuate – your gut.

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