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Frugal Trad: The $25 Target OCBD With Rear Collar Button

A reader recently alerted us to the $25 oxford shirts at Target.  Surprisingly, they feature a rear collar button. And with their tailored fit, low price and apparently smaller collar, they may prove a viable option for impecunious young trads, perhaps of the student variety. Kudos to Target for offering a bit of Main Street



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New Spring Items From Bills Khakis: As Always, Made In America

  A few days ago over at Golf Style I interviewed Bill Thomas from Bills Khakis, one of our longtime sponsors. Those of you who play or who are interested in this man committed to US manfacturing can check it out here. The brand has grown so much beyond khakis that you wonder if they’re


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Secret Society: NSA Recruiting Ads At Brown, 1968

Associate editor Christopher Sharp follows up on our last post, a slideshow on the Brown engineering department, with these late ’60s recruitment ads from Brown’s college newspaper. * * * While perusing the archives of a Brown University student newspaper, I found myself venturing where most traditionalists dare not tread: the late ’60s. My intent


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Brown University Engineering Students, Circa Early ’60s

I believe it was Derek at Die Workwear! who stumbled upon this, or stumbled upon another stumbler. Either way, it’s a great chronicle of student dress during the Ivy heyday, including plenty of white socks, shorts hems, and penny loafers. — CC


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New Colors And Fabrics For Baracuta

We last reported on Baracuta back in September, when the brand unveiled a revamped website. Well this spring it’s showing its famous G9 jacket in a slew of new colors, fabrics and styles, including the olive suede version above.




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Haircuts: Ivy League Versus Beatles

Last night the CBS evening news did a story on Joe Brown of Pensacola, FL, who is still a hardworking barber at the age of 98. Patrons were asked, as they should have been, whether they feel safe in the hands of a nearly century-old tonsorian, especially when he breaks out the straight razor. But


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Green Day: Chens Launches GolfStyle.guru

I suppose after nearly three years now of a golf obsession that’s caused me to neglect career and relationships (though apparently I’m not the first the sport has had this effect on), it was inevitable that I start a golf project. And so I’m pleased to announce the debut of Golf Style, which is accessed


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The Shawl-Collared Baseball Cardigan For RL Magazine

My latest piece for Ralph Lauren Magazine is on the shawl-collared cardigan, which was the favored warm-up gear for baseball players from about 1900-1930. Origins of exactly how and why the shawl cardigan became associated with baseball are murky, and very few of the sweaters survive outside of photographs. I was able to talk to


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The Art Of The Bow Tie: R. Hanauer’s Spring 2014 Catalog

Kudos to longtime Ivy Style supporter R. Hanauer for the wonderful cover on its new spring catalog, which arrived in my mailbox today (as it should have in yours). Hanauer paid tribute to the great tradition of apparel illustration that companies such as Brooks Brothers and LL Bean championed for so many years. A quick


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Tartan Day And Men In Plaid, 1950

In case you hadn’t heard, tomorrow is Tartan Day. To celebrate, we’re sharing a LIFE Magazine article from 1950 (scroll down to page 123) that showcased Yale students in plaid vests and Andover preps in plaid caps. The article opens with this: When the British caught wind of the fact that American men were developing



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Double-Breasted, The Reader Verdict

We bring our double-breast-fest to a close with the all-important reader vote. Have your thoughts on them changed? And since they play such a tangential role in the trad wardrobe, how many of you even own one? Vote below. Pictured above, incidentally, is the 1941 Yale swim team. Note DB with buttondown on the left,


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Make Mine A Double: Chens On DB For The Rake

Our double-breast-fest continues with this story I wrote for the current issue of The Rake. Not exactly Ivy-focused, but those with a general interest in menswear may enjoy it. Pictured above is Fred Astaire from “Funny Face,” in DB grey flannel suit with blue oxford buttondown and bit loafers, while below is me with ’80s


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Golden Years: Getting High On Reefer Twill

We continue our exploration of the double-breasted jacket’s place in the Ivy genre with these recollections from King Richard XLIV. * * * The best-selling blazer in J. Press history was gathered by its roots from Aunt Florence. Irving Press’s spouse was a lady who lunched at the fringes of La Cote Basque and other


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Doubling Down: The Ivy League Double-Breasted Blazer

Prompted by our post on Roger Sterling’s “acid drenched swinger” look, contributor James Kraus sent us the above scan from a 1966 Sears Christmas catalog showing a couple in matching ensembles of double-breasted blazers and ascots. The natural shoulder, double-breasted sack is a bit of an anomaly in Ivy, and one which fell out of


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Tea Time: Bills Khakis’ Younger, Trimmer Tea Label

Bills Khakis, an American brand that made its name with sturdy chinos based upon military khakis from the 1940s, has released a new line inspired by the early origins of khaki cloth itself. The new line, Tea Label, is geared toward a younger customer seeking a trimmer fit. The Tea Label trousers have a lower


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Bowed To Joy: Harvard Displays Architect Walter Gropius’ Bow Ties

A collection of six bow ties belonging to pioneering modernist architect Walter Gropius (1883-1969) are currently on display at the Harvard Graduate School of Design’s Frances Loeb Library. Gropius, along with fellow modernist Le Corbusier, helped cement the bow tie as an emblem of nonconformist thinking, creativity, and architectural genius. The bow ties in the


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End The Madness: Esquire Calls Don Draper An Undertaker

Since it first aired in 2007, “Mad Men” has been the point of origin of a nostalgic zeitgeist for all things mid-century. From hotels to haircuts, from two-inch ties to tiki bars, an infatuation with the so-called “Mad Men Era” has permeated fashion and design. Now the trend may finally be reaching its inevitable end,


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Committed To The Look: Jay Walter Opens New Custom Shop

J. Press may have closed its New York location, but the inimitable Jay Walter, who ran the company’s made-to-measure tailoring program on Madison Avenue, remains committed to serving those devoted to traditional style. His new shop, located in Manhattan at 800 Second Avenue, will continue furnishing customers with the same handmade custom tailoring for which



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