A Fine Man Once Said:

"Part of the 10 million I spent on gambling, part of it on booze, and part of it on women. The rest I spent foolishly."

- George Raft

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Ivy Style At The Museum At FIT

The Ivy Style exhibit at the Museum at FIT opened on Friday. I've been eagerly awaiting the exhibit since it was mentioned to me a few months ago, so I managed to make time to drop by and look around.

For anyone with even a passing interest in men's style, you'll want to see this exhibit in person. On display are a variety of examples of the American look that was born on Ivy league campuses during the first part of the 20th Century. Not surprisingly, with consultants such as G. Bruce Boyer, Christian Chensvold, and Richard Press (former President of J. Press) involved, its easy to see how the exhibit accumulated such a wealth of knowledge (perhaps also not surprisingly, I didn't see much on display from my era, the late 1990s - not a good time for Ivy Style, as I recall).

The vintage items on display represent a who's who of classic American companies: Chipp, J. Press, F.R Tripler, and Brooks Brothers. There were also contemporary clothing items from more recent clothiers such as Ralph Lauren, Michael Bastian, Tommy Hilfiger, and Thom Browne. In some cases, the similarities in designs that were often 100 years apart were quite striking.

Unfortunately, picture-taking was not allowed, but the program provides a few images of what is on display. Personally, the highlights of the exhibit were numerous, but a few things did stand out. The Apparel Arts display was stunning. The artwork and fabric swatches were wonderful, and clearly the magazine had a special focus on campus wear. Also, several pieces loaned to the exhibit from The Cary Collection were truly unique and captured the Ivy League style from the previous eras perfectly. The display of house slippers stood out - the red slippers with devil motifs were really great, as were the moss green slippers with the dollar bill motif. And, of course, the Cornell alumni blazers were absolutely amazing (not as nice as the orange Princeton blazer with blue pinstripes . . .), I'll need to look for those next time I'm at the campus shop in Ithaca.

A copy of the Ivy Style book was on display - unfortunately, it sounds like the book won't be out until November, which at least would be in time for the Ivy Style symposium scheduled for that month. It certainly looked like it was worth picking up!

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