Regional idiosyncrasies and evolution

Vecchio Vespa

(aka TKI67)
I noted that Richard Warren observed that LWBs and black LHS were common in his formative (presumably) time and place. I don’t know where he was or when that was so more detail might help. My formative years for basic dress were in Virginia in a school where we had to wear coats and ties. I left for college in LA in 1967 and ended up in Texas in the mid-1970s. In Virginia brown or dark reddish brown LWBs were certainly accepted but not at all common. Weejuns ruled. Even teachers wore them. When tassels came out they were embraced. Madras jackets and, with blazers, Madras and seersucker pants were common, as were some garish plaids but more likely the rainbow of pastels and deep green and red, no blue. .Mainly surcingle belts. Herringbone tweeds were very popular, usually paired with bright repp ties. Foulards and madders were accepted but not popular. Tan shoes were embraced wholeheartedly when Bass came out with whiskey Weejuns. Embroidered pants had not yet made the scene. I actually first encountered Nantucket reds, paired with sockless Guccis, in LA! In the banking world of Dallas in 1976 everyone seemed to be wearing three piece suits, even in their crazy hot summers. Heck, at the Fed where I worked older guys even wore hats! BB offered a great selection of both three piece suits and hats! Glen plaids were especially popular among their suitings with three or four from which to choose. Young folks mainly wore OCBDs, but the old guard wore starched white point collars. Tassel loafers were everywhere as were wingtips (not LWBs) and cap toes. Even the older folks seemed to wear tassels! In the banking world in Houston there weren’t a lot of three piece suits. Point collars predominated over OCBDs, even for the younger set. Foulard neats ruled in the world of ties. Repps were not as common. Striped suits seemed to outnumber solids with a fair number of brown ones with feint blue striping ! (I was never so brave.) Cap toes were far and away the preferred footware with light browns proliferating wildly. When I went back to Virginia nothing had changed. I wouldn’t try to chacterize LA in the late 1960s and early 1970s in Trad terms. My professors wore turtlenecks, sandals with socks, golf shirts, and occasionally a very wide tie. Yikes.

Now I’m retired in Austin. Trad is rare. The closest thing (brace yourself) is the Vineyard Vines look among fraternities. If I put on khakis and a tucked in polo or OCBD, even if unironed, people will actually ask why I am dressed up! I think Austin may be a town where Trad is about to disappear altogether.

So what are your recollections for your times and places?
 

Oldsarge

Moderator and Bon Vivant
Growing up in the LA Basin, my concept of Trad was Surfer Dude. Levis, colored T-shirts, Pendleton board shirts (Topsters for dress up) and Weejuns. The only time I encountered what this board considers Trad was a high school math teacher, just fresh out of Daht-muth, who tried to tell us 'what college men wore'. Since none of us were going East to school, we ignored him completely and attended university in jeans, T-shirts, Pendletons and sandals. After that? Fatigues.

Now, retired to the PNW, I see a lot of blue blazers with OCBD's among the older business class. But that's about it.
 

Vecchio Vespa

(aka TKI67)
Growing up in the LA Basin, my concept of Trad was Surfer Dude. Levis, colored T-shirts, Pendleton board shirts (Topsters for dress up) and Weejuns. The only time I encountered what this board considers Trad was a high school math teacher, just fresh out of Daht-muth, who tried to tell us 'what college men wore'. Since none of us were going East to school, we ignored him completely and attended university in jeans, T-shirts, Pendletons and sandals. After that? Fatigues.

Now, retired to the PNW, I see a lot of blue blazers with OCBD's among the older business class. But that's about it.
Love your recollections of LA. I went to school in Claremont in 1967, coming from the epicenter of Trad/prep. It was both a shock and very liberating, feelings that persist to this day. I went to law school in the PNW and dressing up meant an ironed work shirt except when I was in the Seattle area with the parents. Their crowd was very Trad. I felt comfortable there in black watch pants. Wow, what memories!
 
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Oldsarge

Moderator and Bon Vivant
Great choice of colleges! As I used to tell my sixth graders, you can get a great education from any one of the UC's but if you go to the Claremont Colleges, you will meet the descendants of the people who really run California. You may not know their names, but they've been in power for a hundred years. Cultivate them, for going to a legacy school has the benefit of connection.
 

Peak and Pine

Connoisseur
^

Interesting. I know nothing of California. The Beach Boys, that 's what I know about California. If you're born and raised on the East Coast there is no California. The World drops off after Pennsylvania. Saddle shoes, ever hear of them? That's what we wore in the day. Weejuns were created and made in Wilton by Bass, but we never wore them. Nor those horrid Bean Hunting shoes. Both Maine products. We wore saddle shoes, also made here, by Dexter in the town of Dexter. We are provincial. We have no college where the leading lights of the state attend. We have Bowdoin (Boh'din) though. Longfellow, Hawthorne and Franklin Pierce went there. Their lights once led. And my best friend Dougie went there. He wore saddle shoes. I wore saddle shoes. Saddle shoes ruled. I shined mine tonight.
 

Vecchio Vespa

(aka TKI67)
Great choice of colleges! As I used to tell my sixth graders, you can get a great education from any one of the UC's but if you go to the Claremont Colleges, you will meet the descendants of the people who really run California. You may not know their names, but they've been in power for a hundred years. Cultivate them, for going to a legacy school has the benefit of connection.
Interesting insight into Claremont. It was a good experience. I met and got to know some of those scions, and they were by and large “good folks.” I should have cultivated them but instead I went to Texas. Oh well. Sadly the California I remember is pretty much gone. As my landlord said, “They put the subdivider to it.”
 

Charles Dana

Honors Member
I went to school in Claremont in 1967, coming from the epicenter of Trad/prep.

TK167: If you spent four years at Claremont, then your senior year (1970-71) would have coincided with my brother's freshman year there (at Harvey Mudd). My brother had a button-down Hathaway shirt in college, but that's about the only "trad" thing he wore then. I remember he had two shirts made of 100% Quiana.

Quiana. The 1970s certainly had a love affair with polyester.

Harvey Mudd College is known for its programs in science, mathematics, and engineering. Indeed, my brother majored in math. And co-majored in English. 'Cause he's weird. Smart (and well-rounded), but weird.
 
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Oldsarge

Moderator and Bon Vivant
^

Interesting. I know nothing of California. The Beach Boys, that 's what I know about California. If you're born and raised on the East Coast there is no California. The World drops off after Pennsylvania. Saddle shoes, ever hear of them? That's what we wore in the day. Weejuns were created and made in Wilton by Bass, but we never wore them. Nor those horrid Bean Hunting shoes. Both Maine products. We wore saddle shoes, also made here, by Dexter in the town of Dexter. We are provincial. We have no college where the leading lights of the state attend. We have Bowdoin (Boh'din) though. Longfellow, Hawthorne and Franklin Pierce went there. Their lights once led. And my best friend Dougie went there. He wore saddle shoes. I wore saddle shoes. Saddle shoes ruled. I shined mine tonight.

If you're born and bred on the Left Coast, everything on the other side of the Sierra Nevada/Cascades was irrelevant. There was no 'there' there. Washington, DC? Whatinhell is that? And who cares? Fashion? We do our own style. It's ours, whatever we make it. New York is a myth.

I know, it's harsh, but that's the way we saw it back in the day.
 

Patrick06790

Connoisseur
I grew up in Scarsdale, N.Y. and then McLean, Va. My father was a lobbyist.

He never wore any shirt without a buttondown collar, except a tuxedo shirt. He told me once that any other kind of shirt was for "lounge lizards and crooners."

In high school in Virginia, 1976-80, I was your basic goof, clad mostly in jeans. I had a pair of slacks for church and so on. Always wore buttondowns, and I had a blazer, but I didn't really think about it.

Denison University, however, was Prep Central. And it was here I made the critical discovery that chinos are approximately 867 kajillion times more comfortable than jeans.

So without adopting the sillier aspects of the style -- turned up collars on polo shirts, or Bean boots worn unlaced -- I gradually morphed into the stodgy old bastard you see today
 

Vecchio Vespa

(aka TKI67)
TK167: If you spent four years at Claremont, then your senior year (1970-71) would have coincided with my brother's freshman year there (at Harvey Mudd). My brother had a button-down Hathaway shirt in college, but that's about the only "trad" thing he wore then. I remember he had two shirts made of 100% Quiana.

Quiana. The 1970s certainly had a love affair with polyester.

Harvey Mudd College is known for its programs in science, mathematics, and engineering. Indeed, my brother majored in math. And co-majored in English. 'Cause he's weird. Smart (and well-rounded), but weird.
Harvey Mudd is an absolutely amazing place. I had a few friends there and a night time job in their dining hall. It was fun talking with people who were that smart. They could discuss anything. Funny story about the one Hathaway shirt.

PS It’s a terrible moniker but it’s tki, not tk1, as in Timothy K. Irvine.
 

Peak and Pine

Connoisseur
Ah, but he'll always be TK-ONE to me. I see that Dana's run out of stuff to talk about (unlike me in this here multi-topic post) so now he's glommed on to his brother in a desperate attempt to keep posting. Hathaway shirts were another Maine product. Waterville. A yearly trek to the factory store for a trunk load of all-cottons, each with the little red H sewn at the very bottom of the right or left side seam. Talk about subtle logo-ing. But were we, talking about subtle logo-ing? Or Dana's bad bro? Or TKI or 1?

Let'stalk about this.Two years ago I Iost home internet when my dial-up provider folded. Yes it was slow. But likewise me. Not age-related slow. More like methodic slow. Anyhow, I figured out what a thumb drive is and it apparently is not sticking your thumb into a free USB port. (Perhaps I am age-related slow. ) This now enables me to shove pics from my uninternetconnected PC into a thumb thing and stick the thumb thing into a laptop and march into a Starbucks, if we had any near here so it's Zena's Bait and Hot Spot Shop and for the first time in two years post a pic here. Pretty exciting, no? Yes? My pants jumped just thinking about it. Tomorrow then. In the WAYWN thread. Move over, Crust! But he's away anyway.
 

Charles Dana

Honors Member
I see that Dana's run out of stuff to talk about (unlike me in this here multi-topic post) so now he's glommed on to his brother in a desperate attempt to keep posting.

Guilty as charged. I have few reminiscences of my own to share because, like my brother, I had no trad clothing whatsoever in the 1970s except for one OCBD (from Sears). Made of 60% cotton, 40% polyester. Judging from the relatively short collar points, the shirt apparently was made around 1965. I have no idea how it ended up in my closet. Anyway, there it was, it fit me well, and looked good--it was light blue with very faint pink and yellow stripes. So I'd wear it in the mid-1970s now and then, even though it was out of style in those days of really long point collars. It was because of that shirt that I knew there would be more OCBDs in my future--but my premonition didn't start coming true until the late 1980s. Until then, my shirts were mainly broadcloth jobs with point collars.

Hathaway shirts were another Maine product. Waterville. A yearly trek to the factory store for a trunk load of all-cottons, each with the little red H sewn at the very bottom of the right or left side seam.

...and those distinctive three-hole Hathaway buttons. Not four. Not two. Always three.
 

Peak and Pine

Connoisseur
Van Heusen 417 collection. Very prep. As was me. Arrow, Gant and the 417s. Had 'em by the carton. Decided to post the pic today. In the Tweed thread.
 

Vecchio Vespa

(aka TKI67)
I grew up in Scarsdale, N.Y. and then McLean, Va. My father was a lobbyist.

He never wore any shirt without a buttondown collar, except a tuxedo shirt. He told me once that any other kind of shirt was for "lounge lizards and crooners."

In high school in Virginia, 1976-80, I was your basic goof, clad mostly in jeans. I had a pair of slacks for church and so on. Always wore buttondowns, and I had a blazer, but I didn't really think about it.

Denison University, however, was Prep Central. And it was here I made the critical discovery that chinos are approximately 867 kajillion times more comfortable than jeans.

So without adopting the sillier aspects of the style -- turned up collars on polo shirts, or Bean boots worn unlaced -- I gradually morphed into the stodgy old bastard you see today
Ah, but he'll always be TK-ONE to me. I see that Dana's run out of stuff to talk about (unlike me in this here multi-topic post) so now he's glommed on to his brother in a desperate attempt to keep posting. Hathaway shirts were another Maine product. Waterville. A yearly trek to the factory store for a trunk load of all-cottons, each with the little red H sewn at the very bottom of the right or left side seam. Talk about subtle logo-ing. But were we, talking about subtle logo-ing? Or Dana's bad bro? Or TKI or 1?

Let'stalk about this.Two years ago I Iost home internet when my dial-up provider folded. Yes it was slow. But likewise me. Not age-related slow. More like methodic slow. Anyhow, I figured out what a thumb drive is and it apparently is not sticking your thumb into a free USB port. (Perhaps I am age-related slow. ) This now enables me to shove pics from my uninternetconnected PC into a thumb thing and stick the thumb thing into a laptop and march into a Starbucks, if we had any near here so it's Zena's Bait and Hot Spot Shop and for the first time in two years post a pic here. Pretty exciting, no? Yes? My pants jumped just thinking about it. Tomorrow then. In the WAYWN thread. Move over, Crust! But he's away anyway.

Loved the little red H and that Maine had its own unique take on aspects of Trad, the Dexter saddle shoes especially. I never saw saddle shoes in Virginia except on golfers and girls in schools with dress codes, usually with a kilt and a blazer.
 
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