Our man in Princeton is semi-officially Julian B. Dean, an Australian doing graduate work there who’s fascinated by the history of the Ivy League Look. This guy is so dedicated he’ll take the train in for J. Press events and then train back home in the wee small hours. Dean will be presenting a number of the historical documents on dress he’s dug up in the school archives throughout this summer.
This post, from a 1949 edition of The Daily Princetonian, centers on what young men at the country’s most stylish educational institution should wear on excursions to Bermuda.
The answer is pretty much the stuff they already own.
Writes the paper:
Tourists Cautioned to Forego ‘Extreme’ Wardrobes for Resort
Much as the tradition of gray flannel and white bucks as the American collegiate uniform has been overworked, it is certain that Princetonians will want to know what to wear when they go to Bermuda. Not only from a standpoint of good taste but also to simplify packing.
Bermuda, though certainly not stuffy, is traditionally conservative. In general, therefore, tourists should discriminate in their wardrobe, avoiding the extreme costumes that are seen in some American resorts. In the same way, French bathing suits, short shorts and artfully shrunken sweaters are discouraged for girls. Remember, too, that most restaurants and dining rooms prefer coat and tie.
During the warmer months, from March to November, poplin, seersucker, linen or palm beach suits are good to have. Since April stands on the threshold of the season, it would be safe to include a sweater and a sport jacket. Buying both of these items, as well as argyles, cashmere and tweed, down there is particularly advantageous. Look for specific information on prices and quality in next month’s Bermuda supplement.
For the sunny weather visitors will need sportclothes, depending on the sport, and beachwear since water there in April is as conductive to swimming as the Jersey coast in June. A raincoat is advisable although squalls blow over so suddenly that you may not have much chance to use it. Comfortable walking shoes are important and are needed for bicycling. Although conservative, Bermuda is not particularly formal. Just to be prepared, include a white dinner coat since, with the introduction of cars, the necessity for peddling to dances has been removed.
Popular in Bermuda is the combination of shorts with long wool socks, a polo shirt and seersucker coat completing the ensemble. Bowties are often scan, and as far as bucks are concerned white, as opposed to the scuffed gray of Princeton, is the style.
For the cooler months, November to March, put the emphasis on tweeds and flannels with a serviceable topcoat thrown in for the windy days.
In case anyone is charged with the task of prescribing clothes for a girl, the following are offered as suggestions: cotton dress, an informal evening gown, a dressy print, blouse, beachwear and sweaters. They shouldn’t be afraid of bright colors, particularly ones that blend harmoniously with the pastel shades which prevail in Bermuda.
Yes, there once was a time when college students were among the best dressed men in the country. Then everything changed. — CC & JBD