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Golden Years: Road Trip To Rahar’s

Rahar’s was a home away from home for me and my pals. The watering hole served as Northampton, Massachusetts headquarters for visiting collegians pursuing female companionship at Smith College. The dilapidated bar and restaurant occupied the ground floor of a post-Civil War Victorian mansion set on a spare hilltop a block off Main Street, just


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Five Years Ago — The Underappreciated Yellow Oxford

This post originally ran five years ago this week. * * * For a certain breed of trad purist, there are only four shirts worth wearing: oxford-cloth button-downs in white, blue, pink and yellow. White and blue are everyday staples of the office wardrobe, and pink is the iconic color, leaving yellow in fourth place,


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White Collar Crimes

In our last post, the Millennial Fogey talked about his penchant for shirts with contrasting white collars. Clearly they weren’t a defining staple of the genre during the heyday. But they’ve long been offered by the usual suspects, though likely worn by men whose most recent time on campus was for a class reunion. Call it Tycoon


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The Millennial Fogey: Introducing Michael Spencer

While I’ve been told I’m conservative in my dress, I certainly don’t consider myself orthodox. I’ve got darted suits with pleated pants (from J. Press). And this depravity will almost certainly ignite the torches among the trad inquisitors: I’ve been known to wear blue oxford-cloth buttondowns with contrasting white collars. I make no apologies, as


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The Great Indoors

Midcentury modern fans, as well as guys who are single (or sometimes wish they were), will likely enjoy heading over to our fraternal site Masculine Interiors for a fine article posted yesterday. It’s about Playboy’s architectural and interior design articles of the ’50s and ’60s, and was written by contributor James Kraus. Kraus’ previous articles


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Magic Changes: Welcome To The New Ivy Style!

One of the more interesting books I read during my fascination with cultural decadence in my twenties posited that there is no progress or decadence, only change — change interpreted as good or bad. Today I think we can all agree that change is a good thing. As we approach our seventh anniversary, Ivy Style


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Two Losses: Frank Zachary And Hugh Auchincloss III

Last week saw the deaths of two accomplished men. They came from very different backgrounds, but both would have crossed paths, metaphorically speaking, in the society pages. One as subject, the other as reporter. Frank Zachary (pictured above) was the editor of Town & Country during the WASPy ’80s. The son of Croatian immigrants and


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Wayward Preppies

This week I heard about a prime-time drama on Fox called “Wayward Pines” featuring a preppy with a wayward-fitting school blazer. Apparently the show has a sci-fi theme. I’ve actually been on a sci-fi kick lately since watching a movie called “Predestination,” based on a story by Robert Heinlein. I got a collection of his


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Squeeze Into This

J. Press windbreaker currently on eBay with Buy It Now of $250. Wear it to the Yale Club and see whether they let you in. — CC


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Barbarians Storm The Gate Of Yale Club

Yesterday the New York Post’s gossip column Page Six reported on the annual meeting of the Yale Club, where some members aren’t too happy about all the tatterdemalions running amok. Writes the paper: One member wrote in a letter to the club, “A horrifying example of this denouement, this sad decline in the atmosphere and


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Golden Years: Rebel Without A Suit

Yesterday saw the e-publication of phase one of Richard Press’ memoirs, which he has been hard at work on for the past couple of years (and which is why you haven’t seen as many Golden Years columns). The lengthy stand-alone essay, entitled “Rebel Without A Suit,” is available from Amazon for $2.99 and can be


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Full Rise, Narrow Leg: The Ivy Style Khaki Project

Take a look at the illustration in this vintage advertisement: would you like pants like that? Recently I’ve been in talks with a menswear manufacturer about making a batch of khakis with a very specific cut: full rise with a leg that tapers to a relatively narrow opening. It’s a very heyday kind of look



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Modest Capitol Hill Turnout For Seersucker Thursday

Turnout for yesterday’s Seersucker Thursday on Capitol Hill was a modest nine, down from previous years. It was also predominantly, though not exclusively, Republican. In the interest of balance, here’s a brief history of political seersucker, courtesy of NPR. — CC Update: There are some quotes from me in this article at The Daily Caller.


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Ornette Coleman, 1930-2015

Jazz pioneer Ornette Coleman has died at the age of 85. Here is the Wall Street Journal’s coverage. I don’t know what the guys are wearing in this photo, but for me it’s always been the epitome of ’50s-“Talented Mr. Ripley” suited-up blacks-and-whites making music together jazz cool. — CC


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Ivy League House Party

Here’s a random image posted recently on our Facebook page. Anyone seen it and know the date and source? I’m guessing it’s an ad by a Main Street clothier who’s using collegiate terms to sell the look. You know, the argument presented ad nauseum by a certain member of the Talk Ivy forum. The men



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Style Icon: Jon Carlo Dominguez

On May 23, The New York Times ran a story called “Catching A College’s Eye,” based on an open call the Times holds for college application essays that address the subjects of money and class. One of the high school students featured is Jon Carlo Dominguez, pictured above in a Times photo by Bryan Anselm.


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Six Years Ago — License Revoked: John Gavin, Almost a 007

As part of our regular new series revisiting topics from the early years, here’s a fresh look at this post that originally ran in June 2009. * * * Take a look at the guy above: Mild-mannered schoolteacher, or James Bond, license to kill? Providing Ivy Infotainment comes with constant pressure to dig up fresh


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‘Sucker Bait: Guess The Maker

National Seersucker Day is a week from today. To get the festivities started, see if you can guess the maker of the jacket above, which is currently for sale by an American retailer. The jacket has a 3/2 roll, patch pockets, and no darts (though obviously some shaping). — CC


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Dog Days Of Summer: Introducing Logan Richard

June arrived with a letter of introduction in my inbox from Logan Szidik, a young style entrepreneur looking to corner the market on preppy dog collars. No kidding: Szidik, a 23-year-old who graduated last year from the University of Vermont, has launched a collection called Logan Richard featuring collars for canines and belts for humans.



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Scoundrelous!

Did designers at Ralph Lauren find a fountainhead of inspiration in the Rand-reading, madras-clad scoundrel from “Dirty Dancing?” This outfit from the Spring/Summer 2015 collection, at least from the waist up, echoes the screen shot in our last post. — CC


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Six Years Ago: Dirty Rotten Scoundrel

We close out the month of May with this post, which originally ran in May of 2009. Pegged on the movie “Dirty Dancing,” it’s a short but fascinating look at how heroes and villains have switched places in pop culture — at least when it comes to messy issues such as social class. * *


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The Young JFK, Not Yet Ready For Prime Time

Yesterday was the birthday of John F. Kennedy. Here are a few pictures of him while a student at Choate, submitted by a reader a couple of birthdays ago. Above Kennedy is pictured in buttondown collar, which he would abandon during his presidential election — the first to reach a mass audience via television —


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Golden Years: From The Pale To Yale

“Blood lust” describes my passion for Daniel Horowitz’s engrossing saga, “On The Cusp: The Yale Class Of 1960 And A World On The Verge Of Change.” Dan Horowitz grew up around the corner from me in New Haven. We haven’t been in touch for over 50 years, but his visit to the Ivy Style Exhibit