Tag Archives: sperry topsiders

Deeper & Differing Looks at Preppy Style & Mad Men Cookies

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.

powerHouse Books

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.”

Teruyoshi Hayashida/powerHouse Books

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.

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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).

Brooke Moreland/The Gloss

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.

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Our final item of note today deals with last night’s Mad Men season 4 premiere.

Michael Yarish/AMC-TV

It was divine.

Don’s still smoking, Pete remains sycophantic and clients don’t always concur with Don’s vision.

Michael Yarish/AMC-TV

There is continued recognition of the way women were treated in the early 1960’s.

AMC-TV

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.

Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC-TV

A quick rundown of stories fans might enjoy:

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!

Courtesy Pink Martini & Pearls

Look at Joan and Betty’s dress cookies!

One of our favorites? The snappy argyle socks, surely not anything Don would wear, perhaps Harry?

Courtesy Pink Martini & Pearls

Until tomorrow!

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Filed under preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion, preppy lifestyle, True Prep & TOPH

Clothes for the Club, Mad for Madras & the Preppy Pet’s Nautical Bed

Hello-Hello and happy Wednesday, this seems to have been a rather intense several days, we’re wondering how it could only be Wednesday?!

We begin with a look at a brand some readers may not be familiar with, Kitsuné.

Kitsuné

Originally started as a music label, the Parisian firm’s design aesthetic is one we appreciate.

Most are simple pieces that can meet a myriad of  needs.

The lines are classic, with little or no frou-frou.

This fall’s collection is called Ivy League; below a few samples via the always-on-top-of-things folks at High Snobette.

Courtesy Images via HighSnobette.com

Here are two styles from the fall group we find rather fabulous.

A list of brick and mortar stores carrying the line is available here; the selection of shops where one might shop online is much broader.

And two very quick looks for your MOTH (Man of the House).

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In today’s Bits & Bytes:

  • There is news that Jaeger is launching an offshoot of the brand aimed at a younger demo:

via BeautyConfessional.net

Targeted at a younger demo, Boutique by Jaeger launches this July and according to British Vogue, the new group will retail for 30% less than Jaeger’s standard collection. Below, two looks from the new collection.

  • The Lilly Pulitzer Warehouse Sale runs from Wednesday, June 9 through Saturday, June 12 at the usual site, the Valley Forge Convention Center.  The fun starts at 5am on Wednesday.
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    We share a couple of cute finds in our Mad for Madras category, we simply couldn’t resist the Madras Toddler shoes, despite their distressed (we think that is the proper use of the term) design, they are too cute.

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    Readers may also appreciate the Sperry Madras tennis shoes for Boy seen below left. (These are designed to be sans laces – gasp.)

    Above right we show the Polo Ralph Lauren Madras Sandals, also for Boys.

    The Girls PRL Sandals (L) are peaking the Cute-o-Meter in the red zone as far as we are concerned, as are the Avril Casuals by Morgan & Milo shown on the right.

    When it comes to madras for Mom, we were surprised to discover a brand with a logo larger than Mr. Lauren’s. Silly Princess.

    The giant rhino is courtesy of Marc Ecko, both pair are seen at Shoes.com.  But then, we’re still fixated on these from F-Troupe at Gargyle.

    F-Troupe at Gargyle.com

    Sigh.

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    We close with what must be an adorable ensembles for the four-legged family members at your palace:

    Plaid and Hound

    By Puppia, the bright eyes at Plaid and Hound discovered the nautically inclined bed, and we simply had to share.

    With that we say g’bye until next time!

    14 Comments

    Filed under Logos, nautical, preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion

    “Herds of Thundering Preppy Clothiers”

    Hello-Hello, and welcome to another wacky week of preppy insanity here at the Princess!

    We begin with more in-depth looks at the new LL Bean Signature and Lands’ End Canvas lines, most notably on AOL’s Walletpop blog and in Luminosity Marketing, an online journal.  The first item is titled “LL Bean’s New Signature Line: The preppy look gets a risky makeover“. 

    “After all, Bean isn’t just a brand; it’s an institution, a torchbearer, a monument to a bygone lifestyle. Along with Brooks Brothers, Sperry and a few other labels, it represents one of the last survivors of the great age of prep, when vast herds of preppy clothiers thundered across the American retail plain, dispensing tweed and bespoke throughout the land.”

    We absolutely adore the “thundering across America” imagery, hordes of preps armed with canvas totes and headbands, wielding strands of pearls like slingshots.

    “And while the new clothes are recognizably Bean, they sport a more tight-fitting, body-conscious style that should draw in Gap, Abercrombie, J Crew and Banana Republic fans.”
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    We don’t recall seeing a madras scarf before and think this item could merit a second look. One more line from the story, this raises an interesting topic:
    “In fact, many of its items are often less expensive than comparable garments at Gap, which has long been perceived as the well-made, reasonably-priced choice for the casually preppy look.”
    We are curious to know your thoughts on the issue, do you find Gap prices higher than Bean?

    Now to the post from Luminosity Marketing, “Geek Out: Lands’ End and L.L. Bean’s Preppy Resurgence“. Geek out. Hhhhmmm. From that story:

    “With preppy, All-American fashions enjoying a nice comeback, we’ve seen many brands that have been able to successfully leverage the trend.”

    As always, the “preppy comes back” theme prompts an inner smile here at the Prepatorium; from comments in the past on the topic, many readers share this reaction. Back to the story by Lamont Swittenberg:

    “We’ve commented here on the resurgence of Sperry Topsiders, but brands like J-Crew, Barbour, Lacoste, Brooks Brothers, Clark’s and a host of new labels have also been successful at taking advantage of this shift in consumer preference. Before recently however, two of the most iconic preppy brands, Lands’ End and L.L. Bean, had remained curiously silent.”

    We apologize for this temporary break from our point, but we have to insert this tongue-in-cheek item from Lacoste, the Comic Croc Shopping Bag:

    Back to the primary point of today’s post, new styles from Bean and Lands’ End; below, a Webbed Belt from the Canvas line and the classic Tretorn sneaker.

    Our hats are off to Mr. Swittenberg; he purchased a substantial amount of merchandise from both the Signature and Canvas lines to better judge the end products from both companies. Ultimately the story makes this point:

    “It’s great when brands have the product development and marketing smarts to update their image while maintaining their essence. It’s a delicate balance that’s not easy to pull-off. The tendency is either to jump too far onto the latest bandwagon or to dogmatically stick to the tried and true past (while slowly becoming a dinosaur). Kudos to both Lands End and L.L. Bean for showing us all the way forward.”

    Both pieces make for a good read.

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    A few more tidbits:

    Lord & Taylor is promoting ‘preppy sneakers’:

    Lord & Taylor

    While The Fashion List talks about the upcoming limited edition collection from Sebago.

    Courtesy Photos via The Fashion List

    The firm is celebrating 40 years of their Dockside shoe, Sebago’s counter to the Sperry Topsider.

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    We wrap up with two quick items, including today’s Pretty in Pink:

    Rosie Campbell is a talented designer we were fortunate enough to discover when she entered our most recent giveaway.  We fell in love with her belt buckles, handmade in the USA.

    We close with yet another popular culture phenomenon we were completely clueless about: the micro pig.  (With apologies to any Facebook fans who may have seen this mentioned on that venue.)

    We had to include it because of one of the creature’s bigger fans is one of our original AntiPreps.

    Hello! Magazine

    And because the little critters were included as part of this year’s Golden Globes swag bags. (Yes, we put this in the “You Can’t Make This Stuff Up” category.) The LA Times has more:

    “The pet pigs usually sell for about $5,000, the suite people tell me, but the visiting celebrities would be able to get one for free. All they’d have to do is complete a one-hour course on how to treat the li’l porkers and present a certificate of completion.”

    There you have it.

    On that note, g’bye until next time!

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    Filed under Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion, preppy lifestyle, Pretty in Pink, You Can't Make This Stuff Up

    Sperry Top-sider Rolling out Retail Stores

    Hello-Hello. Happy-Happy Wednesday!

    Please forgive our brevity, we are coping once again with Apple/iMac software issues. As in our first struggle, we are dealing with this.

    If not easily remedied, the corner condo here at Princess InterGalactic HQ may need a sign like this:

    That is all.

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    We share good news for Sperry Top-sider fans: the brand’s first three retail stores open soon in Tampa, Orlando and Boca Raton, according to this story in Women’s Wear Daily.

    Courtesy Photo via WWD.com

    The next communities to have Sperry stores, Dallas and Kansas City. The company plans to continue its expansion into apparel and accessories. Below left, a women’s Polo Shirt; on the right the Full Sail bag.

    Options for the MOTH (Man Of The House) at your castle include the Mako Short and the Pilot Performance Vest.

    The retail stores will have a nautical feel, as one would expect with this brand.

    Courtesy Photo via GQ

    Some readers may recall that Sperry has collaborated on a line with Band of Outsiders. Above, a look at this spring’s group via GQ.

    This partnership provides the perfect segue into our next newsbrief.

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    The Boy by Band of Outsiders show at Fashion Week.

    Nothing really knocked our socks off, in part because we simply aren’t in a frame of mind to ponder anything remotely related to winter, other than the obvious reminders outside.

    We adore the nautically inspired coat, but the rust plaid pants are eerily reminiscent of the late 1970’s.  This is a frightening prospect.

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    We have a brief update to to our continuing coverage of Team USA’s Olympic uniforms; Polo Ralph Lauren exec and PR pooh-bah David Lauren went to Vancouver to see the uniforms firsthand.

    Courtesy photo via WWD.com

    He wrote a brief column for WWD on his trip and reaction to seeing his company’s designs in action:

    “The opening ceremony on Friday was incredible. Watching Team USA take to the stage in their Ralph Lauren uniforms was a proud moment for us. And it was great to see the diverse fashion for each country’s team.”

    One more update on Team USA opening ceremony uniforms: anyone looking for the oh-so-popular Fair Isle Knit Hat is likely to be disappointed by news that the company doesn’t plan to manufacture more.

    Polo Ralph Lauren

    We did spot one on eBay, as of this writing the bidding was approximately $350.

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    Finally, while probably not news to most readers (it did happen 18 hours ago) we thought it appropriate to update the Westminster story with the news that a Scottie won Best in Show last evening. Congratulations to Roundtown Mercedes Of Maryscot, or Sadie as she is more commonly called.

    AP

    It is never easy coping with the media.

    Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

    Did anyone else watching howl at this sight in one of the commercials running in the show?

    Courtesy Pedigree.com

    These images are from the new advertising campaign Pedigree is using to promote a doggy dental product.

    Pedigree.com

    Denture Your Dog” promotes Dentastix, allowing anyone to upload a photo of the family pet, and give them an amazing smile. Pet owners can select from denture styles dubbed “Bling Bling” to “Dogula”. We selected “The Biggin'” smile for Silly Tilly.

    Click here to see her new and improved smile.  (She even raps.)

    Until next time, may your day be filled with grins and giggles.

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    Filed under preppy

    Sperry’s 75th Anniversary Collection at J. Crew, Busy Gossip Girls

    Hello-Hello and Happy New Year!

    Wow – is it possible the holidays are all behind us? Hanukkah… Christmas… New Year’s?  Yikes, some of it flew by in such a blur we scarcely remember the goings-on. On other points we resort to using the selective recall technique, it helps us overcome the trauma of some episodes, like the great Cheesecake Tragedy.

    However, we are back at it, and we begin with what must have been quite the coup for Brooks Brothers:

    People.com

    It seems that Kevin Jonas wore a Brooks custom tuxedo for his recent wedding to Danielle Deleasa. (We realize that the dinner jacket is nigh impossible to spot on the one and only photo we have seen of Mr. Jonas, and offer our apologies.)

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    Next on today’s hit parade, a look at pieces in the 75th Anniversary collection from Sperry Top-Sider®.

    Courtesy Photo

    In honor of the big birthday the company will offer a number of limited edition releases, like the Men’s Seamate shown above.  Some are available at the Sperry site and others only at J. Crew.  The women’s Original 2-Eye metallic boat shoe seen below is at Crew, offered in platinum.

    Sperry at J. Crew

    (TP has stepped away for the moment, she is struggling with the word ‘metallic’ adjacent to the words ‘boat shoe’.)

    The Crew site also offers this Original Authentic 2-eyeBoat Shoe (L) at $98 “featuring exclusive details you won’t find anywhere else (like grosgrain ribbon at the heel and a just-for-us color: soft sandalwood…”.  Or one can opt for the Original Authentic directly from Sperry at $75, sans the ribbon and special color. As always, we post, you ponder.

    The Women’s Sperry at Crew can be found here; be advised there are only two styles available. The Men’s Sperry at J. Crew can be found here.

    The Orlando Sentinel also had photos of upcoming pieces in the collection. On the left the Women’s 75th anniversary CVO, and on the right, the Men’s 75th anniversary CVO.

    Of course, while perusing items at Sperry we located goodies we would love to acquire now, no need to wait for the fancy-schmancy anniversary hoo-hah. We were really taken by the Women’s Pelican Tall Boot in the new Sailboat print.

    The Surf Blue Anchors Bahama remains a favorite as well.  Sigh.

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    All the Sperry put us in a nautical mood and reminded us about the Sailor Glass Set at Fishs Eddy.

    TQM purchased a set of the fab Cynthia Rowley dishes at Fishs Eddy several years back and we just adore them.

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    We close with a few Gossip Girl tidbits, the first snippets from a lengthy interview with Chace Crawford that WWD did before the holidays. (Most readers know Mr. Crawford as one of the stars of the faux prep school drama.)

    PHOTO: Tony Duran/WWD.com

    Author Nick Axelrod’s opening paragraph is witty:

    “Like the Pussycat Dolls or Brad Pitt, Chace Crawford is the kind of perfect human specimen that should be freeze-dried and put in a time capsule so that, in several thousand years, whatever manlike species can get a sense of just how good we looked.”

    The story speaks about Mr. Crawford’s character in the show, Nate.

    ““I’m not ignorant to the fact that part of the reason why the show’s popular and part of the reason [why] people want to see it is to be like, ‘Oh, novelty boy! Hot boy! Pretty boy!’” Crawford says. “And that’s all fine and good. It is what it is.”

    PHOTO: Tony Duran/WWD.com

    The G2 crew is splashed on multiple magazine covers right now, far too many to justify a complete list, but here are three: Leighton Meester on Australia’s January Cleo cover, Jessica Szohr on Teen Vogue’s February cover and Taylor Momsen on the February Seventeen cover.

    A busy group of young ladies.

    With that we are off until next time!

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    Filed under Gossip Girl, nautical, preppy, Preppy clothing & brands, Preppy Fashion, preppy lifestyle