A pictorial celebration of the clothing and accessories that dominated the American male dress code from 1955 to 1965.
Democratic, stylish and comfortable, the Ivy Look was the height of cool, worn by presidents and hipsters alike, and its impact and influence can be seen to this day in the clothes of designers such as Ralph Lauren, and in the continuing popularity of classics like the Harrington jacket and Levi’s 501s.
Digging deep into the vaults, the book combines new illustrations and still life shots of original clothing and accessories with contemporary magazine advertisements, key movie posters and album cover art, and photographs of icons like Steve McQueen, Paul Newman and Miles Davis to bring the Ivy Look into sharp focus.
FOREWORD Page 12
THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING IMPORTED Page 14
SHOES Page 22
Stop Talking, Start Walking.
These shoes have sole.
SHIRTS Page 48
Button-downs, Tab collars and
the meaning of 16-34.
SUITS AND JACKETS Page 72
Mr Natural. Narrow lapels to go,
hold the double-breasted.
TROUSERS Page 102
Ivy trousers are always flat front -
no matter what the fashion pundits say.
MODS Page 122
London calling. The original Ivy suited
Modernists make the scene.
AN IVY LOOK FOR ALL SEASONS Page 132
Spring forward, Fall back.
CONTINENTAL DRIFT Page 156
From Saint-Germain-des-Pres to
the Via Veneto, the Ivy influence prevails.
HAT CHECK Page 168
Hats guaranteed to give you a head start.
EAST MEETS WEST Page 180
East beats West.
IVY CULTURE AND THE
CREATIVE IMPULSE Page 184
Music, architecture, art and design.
REST AND RECREATION Page 190
Foreign wheels and a pack of Luckies.
STEVE MCQUEEN Page 198
The best-dressed bad boy in Hollywood.
SHOP AROUND Page 202
Where to find the good stuff. Stores, catalogues
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Page 206
A lovingly researched guide to the classic clothing worn by the Ivy League university fraternity in the 1960s, a look that a certain stylish breed of men have never grown out of. In their book, Londoners Graham Marsh and JP Gaul, enthusiasts of all things button-down and cool, dissect the key elements. - Daily Telegraph
An homage to this dress code, which Marsh admits has become an addiction. - Independent
If you are of modernist persuasion, have a love of the classic, need some sartorial tips or just want to know the heritage of ivy brands that are still doing swift business today among the current crop of hipsters, this book should be a nailed-on (or should that be buttoned-down?) purchase. As I said earlier, The Ivy Look isn't some kind of defining text, but it is an excellent guide to set you on a journey. On the evidence here, it's a journey I would recommend, even if you don't fancy going all the way. - www.modculture.co.uk
With preppy fashion's popularity as high as its turn-ups, this history of natty US dressing through vintage Mad Men-style posters and pictures of icons such as Paul Newman, it's classy, and small enough for your chino pockets. - Short List
From 1955-1965 the Ivy look was the height of cool, worn by presidents and hipsters alike.
The first thing a member of the Ivy fraternity will look at is your shoes; from there they check out the rest of your wardrobe. The wrong shoes will break you instantly.
These are the right shoes. From Bass Weejuns and Alden's cordovan hand sewn loafer and long wing tip brogues to Clark's desert boots and Sebago's beef roll slip-ons. Shoes are the heart and sole of the Ivy look.
Without doubt the most famous Ivy shirt is the Brooks Brothers button-down all- cotton oxford cloth shirt. Legend has it that no one except Brooks has ever been able to achieve that perfect roll to the collar. A close second is the tab collar shirt, which in the early 1960s was the shirt of choice for some Wall Street bankers and Greenwich Village sharpies. A guide to the other classic Ivy collar styles is of course included.
In the early to mid 1960s the only game in town was a pair of high-waisted, sta-press trousers made from Dacron - always worn slightly short of the all-important shoe.
The trousers have a straight leg, neither tapered nor flared, with a one and three-quarter-inch turn-up.
SUITS AND JACKETS
Central to it all - the natural shoulder, three-button, single-breasted suit. The jacket with its raised seams, hooked vent, patch and flap pockets and half lining. Cotton poplin, seersucker and corduroy materials are key. Jackets are the same classic cut as the suit jacket - in herringbone, hounds tooth or lightweight Harris Tweed. Not forgetting the blue blazer, backbone of the Ivy look wardrobe's.
From the collar pin and surcingle belt with the correct shaped brass buckle to the striped watchband and - if you really have to wear them - the acceptable colours for socks.
Bermuda shorts and a Lacoste polo shirt, madras swim trunks, Nantucket reds and L.L.Bean moccasins. From the beach to the street in some Ivy essentials.
The navy peacoat, the all-cotton Burberry Trench 21 trench coat, the Gloverall duffle coat, London Fog and Aquascutum raincoats, down filled trail vests - all keep you warm and dry while looking good.
Plaid Ivy caps, French and Basque berets, tennis hats - floppy white or tan cotton with a cross-grain hatband only. The Brooks Brother classic rain hat, see Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau in The Odd Couple.
Even if you don't play sport of any description you will look good in a Baracuta G9 Harrington jacket and a pair of vintage 501 Levi's (Big E only). Or an unadorned white or grey cotton t-shirt under a madras check short sleeved, button-down shirt. Sea Island cotton lisle polo shirt, espadrilles, Sperry topsiders and of course sneakers - but only Keds, Chuck Taylors Converse All-Stars (low or high tops) and Jack Purcells will pass muster.
Sweaters are for collecting, you can never have too many. Long sleeved v-neck cashmere, tennis pullover (long sleeve or sleeveless), and John Smedley long sleeve Merino wool polo shirt. Alpaca cardigan, cotton knit turtle neck, shawl-collar cashmere cardigan - see Steve McQueen in Bullitt. And of course a humble Shetland crew neck sweater in all over cable or plain knit - get it in as many colours as you can afford.
USED THROUGHOUT THE BOOK
Some words on the classic retailers, including Brooks Brothers, J.Press, Chipp, Andover Shop, L.L.Bean, Harvard Co-op, Eddie Bauer, Murray's Toggery Shop, Paul Stuart. The influence of The Ivy Shop, The Squire Shop, Village Gate and J.Simons in the UK.
ALSO THROUGHOUT THE BOOK
The great wearers of the Ivy look, including Montgomery Clift, Steve McQueen, Paul Newman, Woody Allen, Frank Sinatra, Fred Astaire in the movie Funny Face, John Casavettes, Anthony Perkins, Bill Cosby, Lee Marvin, Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau. Plus the influence of modern jazz - including Miles Davis, Bill Evans, John Coltrane, Jimmy Smith and The MJQ.