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The White Buttondown: William Holden, 1954

Our recent post on William Ivey Long led some presumably blue-shirted commenters to say they were reconsidering white. Above is another compelling case for white by another show-biz gentleman named William. Actor Holden is pictured in a LIFE Magazine photo shoot from 1954. Sometimes a white buttondown is all you need. Except for the times



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Rolled Back And Forth: The Strange Trajectory Of The Brooks Brothers Oxford

Throughout the 20th century the Brooks Brothers oxford-cloth buttondown was a classic of American menswear, so iconic it was immortalized in a piece of literature, namely Mary McCarthy’s short story “The Man In The Brooks Brothers Shirt.” Like all of Brooks’ clothing throughout those decades, the shirt offered superb taste and good quality at a


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Better Late Than Never: Bruce Boyer On Brooks’ New-Old Oxford Buttondown

That Brooks Brothers has now seen fit to “re-introduce” its original buttondown shirt – complete with unfused collar, cuffs and placket – should be Big News. Unfortunately it’s all rather anti-climactic, isn’t it? But better late than never, you might say. I can only suppose that it finally got through the thickheads at Brooks that there


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Brooks Reintroduces Unlined, Rolled-Collar Oxford, Price $140

Yesterday a reader notified Ivy Style of a new buttondown oxford he spied on Brooks Brothers’ website. The description bears words that loyal but frustrated Brooks men have wanted to see for decades: “We’ve restored the signature rolled collar.” You read that right, Brooks has finally admitted that something went wrong with the collar on


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Golden Years: On The Cuff

Last week a reader posted an image on Ivy Style’s Facebook page that appeared to show Cary Grant in a buttondown-collar shirt with French cuffs. One sees this occasionally in old photos and movies, but it’s not something you can exactly go out and buy readymade today. We asked Richard Press to weigh in on


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Friendly Rivals: GQ Interview With David Marx On Japanese Trad

When I was in college, I worked part-time tutoring foreign students in English. One Japanese guy became kind of a pal, and during a conversation one day he said, “The way it works is that America comes up with an idea and Japanese make it better.” I was only 20 at the time and this


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Preppy Style Has Gone Mainstream — Thanks To Vineyard Vines?

Is it 1980, with “The Official Preppy Handbook” atop the best-seller list? Or perhaps it’s eight years later, with Ralph Lauren running epic 18-page narrative ad campaigns in Architectural Digest? No? Then perhaps the space-time continuum is at 2004, when this time Ralph Lauren introduces Rugby, putting an irreverent twist on preppy classics for a


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The End Is Here: An Ivy Style Jeans Post

Warning: denim Hard to believe that the season of glad tidings a good cheer was just two weeks ago. Has anyone else noticed an above-normal level of persnickety punctiliousness in what is considered acceptable to wear? Recently discussions have included rep ties, signet rings and critter stuff, and there’s certainly no shortage of self-appointed fashion


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You’re Flocking Kidding? Nope, It’s National Bird Day

If you haven’t put on a tie yet, then head over to your closet and dust off your pheasant tie in honor of National Bird Day. If you don’t have a pheasant tie— or any other kind of avian-themed neckwear — then you can at least honor the day by shopping for one. Above, J.


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Ringing In The New Year In Signet-ure Style

For our first post of 2016, we turn to a topic destined to be more contentious than horsebits on loafers. Namely, rings on fingers. Several months ago Bloomberg ran a story called “Everything You Need To Know About Wearing A Signet Ring.” The author, a woman, is Nic Screws, formerly with Esquire. There’s some fun


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Midnight Frolic: New Year’s Eve, 1965

Here’s to happy smooching at the stroke of midnight, just like they did half a century ago. If she says, “Kiss me, stupid,” you can assume it’s consensual. Photo by Joel Meyerowitz. Happy New Year from Ivy Style! — CC


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Tradsville 2015, The Year In Review

Here are the highlights — good, bad and neutral — from 2015, the year that was. Help us add to the list. — CS & CC * * * Ivy Style gets a magazine-style, device-responsive redesign Ralph Lauren steps down as CEO According to The Daily Beast, college students lose their collective mind John Simons



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Chipp Wit: The Psychiatric Corps And Other Faux Regi-“Mental” Ties

Here’s a curtain call for our pre-Christmas posts on rep ties and their affiliations in the UK. Paul Winston, whose family operated the Chipp brand, originally posted this on his blog back in 2010. — CS * * * A Yale graduate would not put a Harvard blazer badge on his/her jacket. But we here


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Yuletide By The Fireside: C. Sharp On The Christmas Pipe Tradition

In the current climate, one half expects to one day see Santa Claus come out of a re-education camp gaunt, clean shaven, fully repentant and vowing never to pick up his sooty clay cutty. But thankfully Christmas still offers free range and a delightful annual tradition to that endangered species known as the pipe smoker.


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Campus Christmas, 1965

The photo above is from Rice University, 1965. Let’s hope this wasn’t taken on Christmas Eve, with this poor fellow the only one left on campus when everyone else was home for the holidays. Note that 50 years ago Christmas trees could still be placed in public spaces on college campuses, and anyone who felt


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Hip Hooray, The American Way

The topic of striped ties came up this week, both here (in our last post on William Ivey Long), and in our Facebook group. On the Long post, commenters drew the distinction between striped ties that run the original English way (high on the right, low on the left, when facing the wearer), and the


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Conservative Costume: A Tribute To William Ivey Long

For some, navy blazers, white shirts and rep ties are the perfect costume — costume in the dictionary sense, that is. Namely, “a style of dress… especially that peculiar to a nation, region, group, or historical period.” So it should come as no surprise that a costumer would appreciate this costume. Pictured is stage and


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Saddle Shoes And Kilties, 1941

What do saddle shoes and kilties have in common? They’re both featured in the Laurence Fellows-penned image above from the Esquire archives, and they’re both not on my Christmas list. Regular readers will know my aversion to both footwear atrocities. But then again I dig bit loafers. De gustibus, et cetera, et cetera. Below is


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Full Rise, Tapered Leg Khaki Project Update

With disappointment I am forced to announce that our khaki project is on indefinite hold. While still “in development” and not killed completely, our partner, I’m happy to announce, was Bills Khakis, which was excited to make a quality product. A sample had been created and was about to go into production when the company


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We’re F**ked

Mark McNairy, former designer at J. Press, and, under his own name, creator of a host of “Fuck Ivy” gear, including hooded sweatshirts, has a forthcoming book entitled “F**k Ivy… And Everything Else,” slated for release in February. From the Amazon description: The renowned designer’s views on dressing and behaving well: Ivy League meets street,



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