This edition of Ivy Trendwatch is focused on the United Kingdom, where there are several news items worth mentioning.
First off is the February issue of Esquire UK, which carries this article on “Hollywood and the Ivy Look” (the article evidently has an accompanying fashion shoot; if someone can scan and send to us it would be greatly appreciated).
Here are a couple of passages from the article to stimulate your critical faculty:
It is the style that will not die. The Ivy Look – a hybrid of donnish, tweedy English tailoring; the sharp, slim-fit, post-war Italian silhouette and soft, casual American proto-sportswear…
What is the Ivy Look? It’s corduroy, khakis and tennis shoes. It’s tweed, tartan and cordovan loafers. It’s jazz cigarettes, button-down collars, desert boots. It’s duffel coats, polo shirts, Madras shorts. It’s JFK, tortoiseshell and the Nouvelle Vague. It’s white socks, fishing rods, polo necks. It’s Studebakers, Sperry Top-Siders and Steve McQueen – forever the epitome of mid-20th century American style; effortlessly laid-back but unerringly precise.
Next up is the recent founding of a new UK-based Facebook group called The Roll Call, which is dedicated to vintage Ivy style.
And pictured above is a new collection of jewelry called Ivy Noir (one of the more contrived trend tie-ins we’ve heard in a while) by London-based jewelers Smith/Grey. The collection consists of collar stays (an odd choice, given that the default Ivy shirt is a buttondown), and the smelting-accident ring pictured above.
Here’s the collection in the company’s own words:
The Ivy Noir collection is a dark interpretation of traditional Ivy League elements. Created under the slogan ‘Socii Extra Muros’, Ivy Noir pays homage to an imaginary ‘Off-Campus League’ – the ones who challenge the purist facets of the classic Ivy League style.
Manifested in three unique hand-crafted designs this collection gives any occasion a well-deserved edge.
Because you shouldn’t always dress exactly by the book.
And here’s a description of the ring’s design motif:
“I” for Ivy
“N” for Noir
“IX” for 9th letter in alphabet = “I” stands for Indomitus (means the wild, the untamed)
“XVI” for 16th letter in the alphabet = “P” stands for Principatus (means to rule)
London-based retail shop-cum-shrine John Simons has released this handsome new olive raincoat in collaboration with Grenfell:
And finally, there’s the largely UK-driven Talk Ivy forum at FilmNoirBuff.com, where you can always find baffling drivel about our national style by foreigners, like this example from yesterday:
As an Ivy practitioner, I consider it an aesthetic art form and my interpretation and practice of it today, is based on acceptance of the critical elements, but then changes to other elements.
Sir, methinks you take this stuff too seriously. — CHRISTIAN CHENSVOLD