Guess The Madras Maker


The beau ideal, at least for some. Dark and muted and ready for charcoal tropical worsteds. But who made it and when?

The original link no longer works, but you can find out in the comments below. 

27 Comments on "Guess The Madras Maker"

  1. I am not surprised.

    The same model was offered a few years ago in a variety of cloths, including seersucker. Part of the Ivy Row line. The most authentic rendering of the old natural shoulder sack jacket. Light, airy, soft.

  2. $425 on eBay for a Madras jacket? Hahahaha!

  3. I found a similar madras jacket yesterday at a thrift store for $10.99! It had more of a brownish/ olive hue to it.

  4. Thrifty Yankee | May 26, 2013 at 1:15 am |

    Overpriced at $450.
    Immorally overpriced at $1195.

  5. Great jacket. In 1965 this would have been paired with khakis and weejuns.

  6. Reactionary Trad | May 26, 2013 at 1:02 pm |

    @Ole Master

    I don’t remember any such color combination in Madras cloth in 1965. Red and Navy were the dominant colors, certainly not gray.

  7. Ole, I agree. And I actually could have worn a 40 in 65!

  8. Mr. Wyllys | May 28, 2013 at 8:25 pm |

    Most people hate Ralph Lauren, and they have some good reason too…but they do produce some very line stop Ivy items from time to time…Most are darted, but I’ve never had a huge hatred of darts so there you have it…

  9. Reactionary Trad | May 29, 2013 at 4:12 am |


    Thanks for updating my memory.

  10. Joe Tradly | May 29, 2013 at 10:05 am |

    A Ralph Lauren jacket with no darts!? That may be a first.


  11. @ Reactionary Trad, you are 99.9% right on your first comment. The overwhelming majority of Madras jackets then, and now, were and always will be, primarily red and blue. Every now and again, someone has produced a grey, green or brown one though.

  12. My closet is stuffed with $500-$2,000 sport coats all purchased on eBay for $30-$45. Paying $425 for used clothing on eBay is not something I understand.

  13. In the illustrated jacket I like the tailoring, soft shoulder, patch pockets with flaps, 3/2 stance. However, there is something about all those horizontal bands in the pattern. . .

  14. That is one beautiful jacket.

  15. Charlottesville | June 27, 2021 at 8:41 pm |

    This is certainly the madras jacket I am looking for. Or a similar jacket in tan, olive and navy or some other muted combination. Unfortunately, the ones I see today all seem to be in bright, even garish colors.

  16. Aivii Riigu | June 27, 2021 at 10:02 pm |

    Ralph Lauren’s “Ivy Row” line was introduced in Fall/Winter 2010/2011.
    Doesn’t the pattern/color of the fabric look older than that?

  17. Arthur McLean | June 27, 2021 at 10:37 pm |

    Looks more like a Scottish hunting tartan to me. Not as likely to scare the game away.

  18. Father Brown | June 27, 2021 at 10:58 pm |

    Re: Arthur McLean’s comment
    Here an example, for those not familiar with hunting tartans:

  19. In a gratuitous plug for one of the advertisers here, I’ll guess that it’s from, let me see, the Original Madras Trading Company? I read somewhere that they make great single weaver Madras cloth, whatever that is. And their sport coats probably go well with the loafers that Jay Butler makes. And because going out in public comes with a chance of being arrested and thrown into jail with the very sorts of people who wear black suits and notch lapel tuxedos, you might want to pick up a pair of Duck Head khakis also.

    And I should probably mention that the red Madras sport coat and matching pants are the only thing that Brooks Brothers carries now that I’m coveting. That almost related to this topic.

    And in gratuitous bashing of my fellow residents of California, I’ll also note that they call a madras jacket and khakis a “suit.”

    There was also the very nice Chinese lady who spoke minimal English who managed to say “stripe match good” when we shared an up elevator one morning. Not Madras, but summery, so I’ll call it close enough.

  20. I find the discussion of Ebay interesting – maybe it is my size or something else, but I’ve accumulated about ~25 blazers/sport coats in the general Ivy style and I have not had any luck under ~$50. In general, $70- 120 gets a very nice jacket, some of which would have been very expensive (custom Brooks in silk, for example), but most of which are in the comfortable upper-range. Perhaps I’m too harsh, but the two or so I’ve tried at the lower range just weren’t up to the task and exited the collection.

  21. Charlottesville | June 28, 2021 at 11:18 am |

    lwmarti – Sadly, referring to any sport coat or blazer with odd trousers as a “suit” is not confined to California. It is nearly ubiquitous among all but the tiny handful of us who still wear actual suits.

    BenK – I have found an occasional $40 bargain on eBay but, especially over the last couple of years, prices for Brooks and Press classic sack suits and jackets have risen. Still, $100 or so for a BB Makers No. 1 sack from the early 80s or a Donegal Mist sport coat from J. Press in great condition is still an excellent deal. It takes patience, but they still come along from time to time.

  22. Irving G. Steinberg | June 28, 2021 at 12:20 pm |

    Interesting discussion. I love madras but I prefer the older, pre prep 1980s revival, vintage madras shirts, shorts, and ties. I find the later ones to be mostly too heavy in the material (which defeats the purpose of madras), stiff collared (lined and or fused, or start her like a dress shirt), and usually in a heavy patchwork or worse, a over loud color scheme. Sadly, I’m parting ways via eBay with a 1960s bleeding madras cloth sport coat of mine, mostly because it doesn’t quite fit me and the stripes on the sleeves don’t align with the stripes on the front, which kept from wearing it much (as well as the fit issues). It has no shop or brand tag, so I assume it was a cheap (though still union made) “Main Street Ivy” item. I regret passing on a fantastic late 1950s brooks brothers madras on Etsy a few months back in my size but with a lot of wear around the collar but at least the stripes matched. The rule should always be, when in doubt, buy now, sell later.

  23. Old School Tie | June 28, 2021 at 1:21 pm |

    Not wishing to offend my American (or indeed, Indian) Ivy Style colleagues, I have always found madras a bit over-the-top. Perhaps a subtle shirt, but anything else is too much for me. Not even a tie, I’m afraid.

  24. Charlottesville | June 28, 2021 at 9:00 pm |

    Old School Tie – Very proper attitude on your side of the Atlantic. But over here we are a bit brasher, I suppose. What are your thoughts on Liberty print ties, seersucker sport coats and suits, and sport coats or trousers in cream colored linen, or light colored chambray or oxford cloth? I must confess to samples in my closet of all of the above. And a Panama hat to top it off.

  25. Charlottesville | June 29, 2021 at 9:06 am |

    I see that J. Press has a muted blue, red and gray madras shirt this year. The fabric would make a great sport coat similar to the one above.

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