When I look back through fashion archives, there is one style in particular which always stands out in terms of American fashion through the ages- Ivy League. A style defined by tweed and madras jackets with a natural shoulder and narrow lapel; chino and flannel trousers, button down shirts and penny loafers. Adding together a bold but defined mix of print, horn-rimmed glasses, tapered trousers and regimented hairstyling, this look could easily have been mistaken as that of an eccentric history professor- but the tailoring and youthfulness meant that it worked and still does, on any demographic.
|The mid 50s look of Ivy League college campuses is still echoed on every catwalk from Tom Ford to Ralph Lauren, it's clear the trad-american look is still timeless. The benefit of the Ivy League style was just that; it wasn't a look based on current fads and trends, it was a look based on proportions, quality and hue of the fabric.|
|Ivy style has always fascinated me due to the versatility, the fact that it has come from the squarest of places (a university campus) and was adopted by the hipster jazz scene through the late 50s - 60s , it was a classless style in a time when no such thing existed. Miles Davis himself shook up the world of music and men's fashion in the mid 50s when he approached a small haberdashery in Cambridgeshire, MA and left the store sporting a top to toe Ivy look, in doing so he managed to fuse the then segregated styles of the black jazz artists and the establishment.|
There is plenty of literature available around the American Trad/Ivy League style I've mentioned. Most notably 'Take Ivy' , A book which was originally published in Japan in 1965. This book has been men's fashion treasure for years, publications of this book were incredibly difficult to find up until recently, fetching up to $2000 in auction. Fortunately for most, earlier on this year they released an American publication of the book. 'Take Ivy' was created by four japanese sartorial style enthusiasts, who descended onto some of America's most elite Ivy League universities and took candid photos of the students in their natural habitat. The end effect is a series of beautifully shot photos that have inspired many fashion designers throughout the years, and are just a dream to look at.
Images & Information have been sourced through various literature. If you are interested in any more information on trad men's fashion or Ivy League style, I encourage you to check http://thetrad.blogspot.com .
I hope you've all enjoyed a photo / fashion heavy post.