“The distinction between past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.” – Albert Einstein
Einstein and J. Press are both… pretty Ivy. In his theory of General Relativity Einstein submits that there really is no past, present and future. J. Press’s Spring Book is an exhibit thereof. You can check it out here.
J. Press isn’t shy about where all this is going. In the intro by Richard Press, he encourages both the traditional and the creative. He calls it Ivy Sprezzatura. I would have called it Degage, but that is really my only criticism of the collection.
In the presentation of Block Theory, this paragraph would have been called the abstract:
The season features classic Poplins, Seersuckers, Chambrays and lots of Madras including some great patch madras anoraks. We’ve also added Batik print fabrics throughout the collection. We’re introducing updated versions of some J Press favorites from the past. Soft constructed Cool Cloth suits and Crash Linen jackets and trousers. Some other highlights are: over 20 patterns of OCBDs, Rugby shirts, and cotton sweaters all made in the USA. Also, a full range of swim shorts and Madras popovers.
They are not kidding about the patterns, which Press integrates seamlessly. (See what I did there?)
I was also really encouraged by Press’s continued outreach to a new market. Here:
If you are in the FB group (and if you aren’t, by all means you are welcome, it really is a focused and remarkable spot on the internet) you know about my rants for the inclusion of women in Ivy. And the start of a Women’s section here. This image made me particularly happy:
I’m posting another link for you here. There is a lot to take in, from the suits to the linens. Most everything in the book marries the traditional and the degage with an understanding of both.
There’s a bit in the catalog where Richard Press interviews Jim Caruso at Birdland. It’s a good read. I’ve been going back and forth lately about how important the historical aspect of Ivy is with a few people over at the group. My thesis (I’ll take the mic now Einstein) is that in order to really sell the Ivy aesthetic across the board, you have to do two things. First, you have to sell the lifestyle (this is not debatable) but you also have to reinforce the values that stem from the history. The history and the values guardrail the experimentation. In other words, you can’t be really degage without doing your homework. So hat’s off here, J. Press invests time and money in this regard, and is a large part of the rising tide that lifts the Ivy boat.
All in all, the Spring 2022 is a tremendous work. There is enough of what you want. There is creativity with respect.