That Ivy Look, & Other Monday Musings

Hello-Hello, and Happy New Week to everyone!

We begin with a look at one of the WSJ stories we enjoyed reading in Saturday’s paper, “The Return of the Ivy Look“. In the story Darrell Hartman looks at the style’s recent rise in popularity among those generally attracted to more mainstream fashions.

“Didn’t go to an Ivy League school? Never played a team sport in your life? No problem! Jock-inspired styles cribbed from the golden age of collegiate athletics will win big for spring”

F. Martin Ramin for The Wall Street Journal,

In explaining the actual look, the piece quotes a longtime J. Press associate as well as our friend Christian Chensvold from Ivy Style:

“Ivy League style was something that just was, as opposed to something intended to create an effect,” said David Wilder…

At least it was for anyone who was the real deal—in other words, “old-money guys who’d all gone to prep school, had that natural nonchalance, and looked like they’d been living in their clothes since the day they were born,” Mr. Chensvold said.”

Mr. Hartman discusses the resurgence in popularity for what many call ‘heritage brands,’ those mentioned above as well as others, like Brooks Brothers, while also considering some of those new to the genre, including Polo Ralph Lauren and Band of Outsiders.  Below, two pieces from Band of Outsiders.

One of our favorite books is also referenced:

“That species is the revered subject of “Take Ivy,” an influential study of elite Northeastern campuses published in 1965 by a team of fashion-savvy Japanese writers and photographers. For years a cult item among fashion insiders, the book was finally released in U.S. stores (including the ever-trendy J. Crew) this summer, flooding the menswear world with images of wholesome-looking ’60s undergrads bent over books in libraries, strolling across leafy quads and—perhaps most importantly—demonstrating a robust enthusiasm for sports.

Via The Fox is Black

There’s much more info and insight in the WSJ story, we happily recommend this one, it is a good read.

The book cited above, Take Ivy, was discussed at length in many articles, The Daily Mail offered The Ultimate Guide to Ivy League Chic Straight from Japan last fall.

Written around a collection of photographs by Teruyoshi Hayashida, Take Ivy proves how little the look has changed over the past 50 years.

The book deconstructs the ‘casual, yet neat’ style favoured by students at the eight Ivy League universities, such as the shirt-and-Bermuda-shorts look, and varsity colours.”

Via The Daily Mail

BTW, if interested in Take Ivy, we still have a limited number of copies, the book may be found here.


Next, we wanted to share a few styles from the upcoming collaboration between designer Sophie Theallet and Nine West.

Courtesy Images via StyleList

Many of the styles are definitely Pretty in Pink, these pieces are made with a silk repp stripe.

Courtesy Images via StyleList

We are very impressed with the ballet flats, the styles will be available in more than just the pink color palette.

Courtesy Images via StyleList

The collection is slated for a May launch.


Frequent readers know we have a fondness for Kate Spade, the styles are attractive and the company’s whimsical approach to marketing is a breath of fresh air.  Another reason we like the company?

Kate Spade

It’s open approach to online sharing. Above, an illustration for one of many free cyber Valentines that may be sent to anyone you choose; below, a look at how a full card appears.

Kate Spade

We show the artwork from two more cards below, but be assured there *are* many designs offered that are not pink, click here to peruse the pretty options.

Our thanks to the one and only College Prepster, Miss Carly, for the original tip on this!


A quick note of the social sort for those near our nation’s capitol next week, Vineyard Vines is throwing a party to launch its spring collection.

Vineyard Vines via Sky Blue Events

V2 has partnered with our friends at Sky Blue Events for next Wednesday’s do at the retailer’s new Tyson’s store; the fun begins at 5pm, click here for more info.


We leave you with two quick hits, the first involves this weekend’s bright and sunny Lilly fashion show at the Ringling Museum of Art.  The show was a fundraiser for the Museum, and the always delightful She Blogs Couture by the Sea was in attendance and shared *outstanding* images of the event on her blog.

The second comes to us via a gracious reader. Last week we showed the Sperry Top-Sider keychain in a post, but sadly, it sold out very quickly.

Sperry Top-Sider

That generous reader told us about these Rainbow Sandals Keychains.

We want to thank our kindly commenter for the link.

And with that, we say goodbye until next time.


Filed under Collaborations, Gossip Girl, Preppy Fashion, Pretty in Pink

11 responses to “That Ivy Look, & Other Monday Musings

  1. Love the Kate Spade Valentines, so sweet

  2. Saw the WSJ article with amusement but didn’t get a chance to read the whole thing – will have to go back. I think this is not a sudden resurgence but a swell that has been gathering momentum for several years. And Hayashida is of course right – this style never really went out, although there was a period in the 60s and 70s (after Take Ivy’s original publication) when most of the students on ivy campuses didn’t dress this way. This whole concern with heritage has essentially gone viral – just take notes from this fall’s IHT luxury conference in London, where every single brand was finding ways to bring whatever history they had to the forefront of their marketing campaigns. An interesting phenomenon that clearly says much about our contemporary social mores and the need for a connection to the past.

  3. MCW

    I am kind of liking the Nine West collaboration. Thanks for the heads up! The only thing is their shoes are usually so uncomfs!

  4. MRM

    Oh. My. Goodness. Thank you for sharing. I am not a fan at all of the heels, but I must.have those flats!!!

  5. What to Keep

    I’m glad to see that classic clothing might be making a comeback–lord knows the men in my life could use it!

    Can’t wait to see what the new generation of “prep” come up with!

  6. Those Nine West flats are darling! I may have to check those out! xoxo

  7. vickym

    Nostalgia galore. Sweet memories!

  8. I was invited to the VV event and I’m thinking about going. I will send you photos if I do…. xoxo, Wendy

  9. To me this is classic American dressing, and now you see it with a twist when you see the various brands offer their take on preppy dressing. The basic uniform however, of button down shirt, chinos, ribbon belt, boat shoes, is always in my book goig to be pure classic dressing… me a young man that doesnt look terrific in that! Thankfully my kids like the dress this way, and are big BB fans and love Vineyard vines as well. I am loving the new take on prep dressing and think Hayashida is just helping to “raise awareness” to a style thats always been around, always will and is enjoying a resurregence of popularity.

  10. Ah, Kate Spade! She never disappoints!

  11. Jen

    Going to read the WSJ article now. I used to be far more preppy than I am now when I was in college.
    I actually really want to go to the Ringling Museum. After reading Water For Elephants, I’ve been fascinated with the circus during the depression.

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