Recently a portion of the MFIT’s “Ivy Style” exhibit was brought to Japan for display at Tokyo’s Isetan department store. Last week museum deputy director Patricia Mears posted a write-up on her trip to Japan to oversee the installation. Here are some highlights:
Although the run was only a week long, the buzz surrounding the exhibition and related events was intense. Radio shows devoted to the cult of Ivy were broadcast on Saturday and Sunday from a corner of the store devoted to pop-up shops of American firms such as Martin Greenfield and Individualized Shirts, as well as classic companies such as J. Press and Brooks Brothers.
One of the great highlights was meeting Shosuke and Rui Ishizu, the son and grandson of Van Jacket founder, Kensuke Ishizue, also of Take Ivy fame. Gracious, knowledgeable and possessing a wicked and sharp sense of humor, they conveyed how creative and ground- breaking Ishizu senior has been. Translation and additional information was communicated by the American expatriot, David Marx. David’s own work on Ivy in Japan will be the subject of an upcoming publication that will no doubt be a great addition to this field.
Those who follow the Tailor Caid blog will find this interesting:
I was able instead to meet one of Japan’s leading bespoke tailors, Yuhei Yamamoto, whose firm is called Caid, Modern Tailoring. Not only is Yamamoto a superb craftsman, he is an ardent connoisseur of mid-century American design. He collects objects ranging from Brooks Brothers Own Make suits (replete with hand workmanship) to vintage records and photographs of Henry Fonda, Steve McQueen, and Frank Sinatra. While he can replicate nearly anything, his own suits are a blend of continental panache and Ivy style ease. Belts have tabs identical to those worn by Sinatra and are finished off with shirts and ties of his own design and manufacture.
Finally Mears gives credit to the exhibits throng of attendees, “an audience that not only relished the chance to see historical Brooks Brothers material, but who are ardent advocates of Ivy style, keeping its classical elements alive and relevant.”
For the complete story, head over to the Museum At FIT’s website. — CC
Isn’t there some miracle diet that promises to burn fat while you sleep, so you can ostensibly wake up weighing less than when you went to sleep, without having to do anything except dream about donuts?
Now there’s another way to wake up slim.
This morning J. Crew sent an email touting slim-fit lounge pants and pajama sets. I had no idea that more body-conscious apparel is desirable when going to bed, when clearly what is desirable when going to bed doesn’t require any apparel.
As for the pajama sets, J. Crew must be trying to broaden its demographic. Males under 30 don’t wear pajamas any more than they wear watches. — CC
Paul Winston has had to clone himself in order to keep up with the sudden demand for his value-priced neckties. Look closely in the photo above and you can see there are three of him taking phone orders.
Earlier this week Paul Winston finally got around to putting up an ecommerce site for his wonderful neckties that bear the Chipp2 label. Before he’d told anybody, some trad found the site and shared the info, and one day after the site went live Winston had 100 orders.
Why? In part because he’s one of the last of the old guard, who worked at his family business Chipp, and whose father worked for J. Press before the war. Not surprising, people feel a connection to history when they order from him.
The other reason is the price. Chipp2 grenadines, knits and ancient madder ties are a modest $49.50. His witty “conversation ties,” as he calls them, are just $35.
Check out ChippNeckwear.com, but just know that navy grenadines are sold out until February. — CC
Those who can’t get enough of brushed Shetlands should thank Derek at Die, Workwear! who just tweeted about some Scottish-made ones from Norse Projects, a brand definitely under our radar.
The specs (especially the fully fashioned sleeve) are compelling:
Made in limited numbers for Norse
- Regular fit made from 100% Virgin lambswool
- Unique broken melange colours
- Yarn is spun using 100% green sourced electricity
- 2×2 knitted rib collar, cuff and hem
- Fully fashioned sleeves
- Norse Projects tab label at hem
- Made in Scotland
OK, maybe not the label at hem. But that should be easily removed. Best of all is the modest price of $131.
To see the nine color options, head over here. — CC
Brooks Brothers CEO Claudio Del Vecchio talks to Bloomberg TV’s “Street Smart” show about the brand’s current business strategy, including the upcoming steakhouse, which he says was inspired by his grandmother’s kitchen.
The hosts’ questions are on point, and include asking Del Vecchio if the more fashionable clothing risks alienating “the traditional East Coast customer.” He replies that the company needs to both have the new as well as “what we’re known for.
“When we made mistakes in the past,” he also says, “it was forgetting the traditional customer we had to try to get a new one.” — CC
Twenty-seven months and 20,000 balls after hitting my first, I finally made a swing on the third floor of Brooks Brothers (in my socks, no less) that the instructor said “could be on television.” Though it happened about six weeks ago, I just now got the video clip, from which these screenshots were taken.
Since then I’ve been unable to duplicate this miracle on 44th Street. (Continue)