Hello-Hello, we hope everyone is enjoying a splendid start to the week.
Many readers may have already seen the story we reference below, but with apologies to our Facebook fans, today we look at yesterday’s Fashion Diary column in the Times “Prep, Forward and Back“. In his story, Guy Trebay looks at the return to heritage brands and styles:
“Ray-Bans were suddenly on a list of Old School must-haves and so were wool vests from the Filson, and Red Wing boots and Alden loafers and Gitman oxford cloth shirts and Sperry Top-Siders and Quoddy moccasins. Designers as varied as Thom Browne, Scott Sternberg of Band of Outsiders, Billy Reid and Frank Muytjens of J. Crew all made hay with the conservative classics. The style became so ubiquitous that, the designer Michael Bastian said, “The whole preppy machine requires a recalibration.”
If Mr. Trebay’s name sounds familiar, it is because we just featured the writer and his column on the needlepoint belt phenomenon, actually declaring him our hero for his comment about “…the sartorial horrors visited on us lately under the guise of a preppy revival,”. (Click here for that post.)
Back to the story in Sunday’s Times, “Studying the Preppy Look and its Reference Points“. Much of the piece looks at Take Ivy, the literary cult favorite we most recently chatted about here.
From Mr. Trebay’s story:
“Time, it develops, has done little to dim the allure of “Take Ivy,” with its guileless snapshots of handsome, fit and presumably bright young lugs disporting themselves in dining halls, on the College Green at Dartmouth, along Nassau Street in Princeton and in Harvard Yard.”
The piece references another soon-to-be-released volume, True Prep.
““The reality is the people in that book at that time went to schools and belonged to clubs that most ordinary people couldn’t get into,” said Lisa Birnbach, an author of “The Official Preppy Handbook” and “True Prep.” ‘“Take Ivy,” Ms. Birnbach said, is a ruling class “look book,” a template for any budding Jay Gatsby.”
A slideshow accompanies the story, both are excellent reads.
In a similar vein, The Gloss carried a post last week, Fashion 101: The New Preppy; the author approaches the topic from an entirely different perspective.
“I have never been preppy. When I was growing up, being labeled a ‘prep’ was almost as bad as being referred to as a ‘poser’, i.e. the uncoolest thing that could happen to you. I avoided being preppy at all costs.”
“However, as we grow up and enter the business world, perhaps we have something to gain from tapping into the inner preppy.”
In her piece, Brooke Moreland visits the Puritan store on the Cape, long a staple in Chatham (and several other communities).
The store’s manager, Michelle Wilson Blaze shared her perceptions on customers:
“Blaze explained to me that the men wear Polo. The old men wear the small horses and the youngs wear the big horses. They all wear khakis and if they are over 50, well, then it’s time to bust out the Tommy Bahama.
As well as impressions of those visiting the Cape: .
“Brands like Tory Burch and Burberry pop up in the store, adding a contemporary preppy twist on the classics. Ginghams, tunics and embroidered tops peer out from among the plaid and Bermuda shorts.”
And while most preps don’t pay attention to what is “in” or “out” at any given time, here is one last tidbit from Ms. Moreland’s story:
“The ‘it’ preppy shoe happens to coincide with the ‘it’ shoe of the rest of the world at the moment: the Sperry Top-Sider.”
To see Ms. Moreland’s entire story and learn her ultimate verdict on the merits of the style, click here.
Our final item of note today deals with last night’s Mad Men season 4 premiere.
It was divine.
Don’s still smoking, Pete remains sycophantic and clients don’t always concur with Don’s vision.
There is continued recognition of the way women were treated in the early 1960’s.
Betty seemed particularly petulant last night, and we remain concerned about little Sally Draper. We love this shot of Betty, it seems to perfectly capture her simmering rage while also betraying her vulnerable and forlorn side.
A quick rundown of stories fans might enjoy:
- An excellent review with a change of heart for one critic in the Baltimore Sun
- Alessandra Stanley’s look at the show in the Times
- The reaction to the episode in the Journal’s Speakeasy Blog
- “Why I Love Pete Campbell” (The Gloss)
- The LA Times’ review
How popular is the show? Enough that star Jon Hamm will be in an upcoming episode of the Simpsons, portraying an FBI agent. The Toronto Sun has details.
We leave you with pictures of these amazing cookies created by our friend Pink Martini & Pearls, part of her Mad Men Quiz Giveaway post!
Look at Joan and Betty’s dress cookies!
One of our favorites? The snappy argyle socks, surely not anything Don would wear, perhaps Harry?