Brooks Brothers’ Annual Christmas Party

Last night Brooks Brothers held its annual Christmas party, which benefits the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, at its Madison Avenue flagship. My third year in attendance (but my first one in brown flannels), the event seemed larger than usual and there was revelry on every floor. I took a few snapshots of guys who

Age Of Enlightenment: Bills Khakis’ 18th-Century Shetland Crew

It’s easy to bemoan the death of American manufacturing, but much harder to go and discover historic facilities that still exist. That’s exactly what Bill Thomas did when he set out to produce an American-made Shetland sweater and made an illuminating discovery. “When we set out to introduce a fully fashioned American-made Shetland sweater, we

Free Wheeling: Allen Edmonds’ Independence Collection

Allen Edmonds has just unveiled a new collection of higher-end shoes priced at $445. Dubbed the Independence Collection, with models named for signers of the Declaration of Independence, the shoes feature a sole detail called wheeling (pictured above) that had remained locked in the archives, unused, for the past 30 years. Pictured below is an

Ivy Trendwatch: News Roundup

Much news in Tradsville over the past week. First up is the “Take Ivy” movie, which I’ve just finished watching. A DVD of it is included in the current issue of the Japanese magazine Oily Boy. A friend in Japan ripped and uploaded it, but asked that I not share. Sorry, guys. The film is

Ivy Trendwatch: London Celebrates The Ivy League Look

The handful of 50-somethings who comprise the UK Ivy style tribe put on their best wide lapels and skinny ties (the unfortunate result of buying vintage clothing from different decades) and gathered last Thursday at trad shrine John Simons to celebrate the launch of the book “Hollywood and the Ivy League Look” by Graham Marsh.

Budget-Conscious Lands’ End Patch-Pocket Herringbone

If you’re a trad on a budget and want some “Take Ivy” jacket details but can’t afford RL/Rugby prices, take a look at these two jackets by Lands’ End with a student/professor vibe and cheap tuition. Above is a herringbone sportcoat that was on sale last week for about $165 (it’s currently back up to

Another Madison Avenue Working Stiff

I’ve been working at a magazine for the past few weeks and today my first issue came from the printers. The magazine is called Quest and is basically New York’s last Society magazine — capital S. We cover the Upper East Side/Hamptons/Greenwich/Palm Beach crowd. They were closing the November issue when I started and I

Across The Pond: Brooks Dresses Kermit The Frog

Brooks Brothers has historically taken its inspiration from across the pond — England, to be precise. Now it’s looked across a smaller, home-grown pond and found an amphibian celebrity to outfit. Today the company announced that in addition to its roster of presidents, captains of industry and rogues and gentlemen, it has now dressed a

Jock Envy: A Roundup Of Varsity Sweaters

There’s just something about this time of year — the fact that school’s back in session, the way the leaves are changing, all the football that’s being played — that makes autumn feel very collegiate. The varsity sweater channels this state of mind. It evokes memories, whether real or idealized, of strolls across leaf-strewn quads

Bagpipes And Buttondowns: Brooks Celebrates Scotland

On Wednesday night the sound of bagpipes serenaded workers on Madison Avenue as they filtered out of their offices. Pipes are an acquired taste — best acquired by growing up in Scotland — and while some stopped to listen, others stayed glued to their iPods. The kilts and argyle were part of a celebration of

Norman Hilton, 1919-2011

Norman Hilton, who ran an eponymous Ivy League clothing brand and was Ralph Lauren’s first investor, died yesterday at the age of 92, his son Nick told Hilton’s motto was “Doing One Thing Well” and his logo features a weathervane. Tonight it points not north or south, east or west, but towards the sky.

Upmarket Neckties From Lands’ End

Lands’ End is a great source for simple ties like stripes and knits. I have both the navy and black Italian-made knits, which are just the right width for me. But this season the Sears-owned brand is offering a handful of specialty ties at a much higher price point. Above is a patchwork tartan wool

Junior Prom: Ivy Style Completes Year Three

Lately I’ve been hitting golf balls so obsessively I failed to notice that October 1st marked Ivy Style’s three-year anniversary. We’re finally seniors. In the meantime, though, it’s time to celebrate the junior prom. The image above is from the Vassar archives, and comes from an article with an amusing run-down of men from various

Preppy Book Signing At Saks

Last night Jeffrey Banks (pictured above) and Doria de La Chapelle signed copies of their new book “Preppy: Cultivating Ivy Style” at Saks Fifth Avenue. It was a full house, though hardly a Prep-a-Palooza. Besides your humble blogger in rep tie and pinned club, there was just KJP and sweetheart:

I Finally Take A Good Photo

… and then get mis-identified. Mort must have been not stoned. Me at the Gant fashion show two weeks ago, in tailor-tapered tan 501s and Allen Edmonds penny loafers. Above the waist: navy Lacoste polo and a constipated expression. It’s pretty ignominious when your most flattering side is your feet. — CC

See Ya Later Alligator: The $1,000 Brooks Brothers Belt

I think I’m going to get an engine-turned belt buckle. I’ll have it engraved with just two initials — CC — a little in-joke reference to my abbreviated bylines here. For now, however, I’ll have to settle for a leather strap to go with it. Brooks Brothers offers a buckle for $250 — the going

Battle of the Wits: What Does A Preppy Smell Like?

Tommy Hilfiger recently released a new fragrance called Eau de Prep. I took a whiff of it at the Fifth Avenue flagship recently, and you can definitely detect a trace of tonic water. But it got me thinking, what does a preppy really smell like? Old money and even older sneakers? Salt water and peanut

Riding The Crest: Morris of Stockholm

When it comes to piling on the faux-heraldic crests, nobody does it like Morris. The Swedish brand’s Anglo-prep fantasy ensembles include the above example, which pairs a crested hoodie with a crested necktie and crested cardigan. (You probably also noticed the striped belt echoed by a striped watchband.) Perhaps all those crests should include as