I had every intention of attending FIT’s Ivy Style exhibit opening night September 14th, but I found myself out of town that weekend. Several months pass, I leave Ralph Lauren, ink a lease on a Brooklyn apartment...life happens, but I finally find my way to The Museum the last weekend the retrospective is in town. This Ivy style shrine is here in large part because of generous contributions by Richard Press, The Cary Collection, Ralph Lauren, and Brooks Brothers. It was extremely gratifying to see up close originals of key iconic menswear pieces—the polo coat, rowing blazers, sack suits and the like.
If you were not able to make it to the exhibit, fortunately for you Fashion Institute of Technology published a book chock full of historical articles by G. Bruce Boyer and Patricia Mears (deputy director at the museum), an interview of Richard Press by Christian Chensvold, and scads of old menswear illustrations and photographs. To my pleasant surprise, I found this copy of Ivy Style: Radical Conformists under the Christmas tree last month. It goes deep, very deep into certain aspects of the menswear movement...and as a menswear geek, it’s very interesting and educational. And frankly, the madras cover is tops.