First Look | GANT Rugger SS10 | A Continuous Lean.

First Look | GANT Rugger SS10

Jun 22nd, 2009 | Categories: Americana, Men's Stores, Men's wear, Preppy, Style | by Michael Williams

The name GANT is synonymous with East Coast prep. Founded in New Haven, Connecticut in 1949, the company basically perfected the American shirt by making private label for J. Press, Brooks Brothers, the Yale Co-Op and many more. By the 1960′s (one could say the Take Ivy era), GANT was the shirt for students, popularizing the button-down on college campuses all over America. Since then the company has changed hands several times and has had its share of ups and downs, but recently it has been all ups, no downs.

A more recently focused GANT has established a great presence for its casual Rugger line (which the company launched in the 1970′s) everywhere from Scoop to Barneys Co-Op and in the process become one of the great revivals of the American heritage look. For spring / summer 2010 GANT looked to one of its own designers, Mr. Christopher Bastin, to further develop the Rugger range. Bastin (who possesses an encyclopedic knowledge of classic American sportswear) literally combed through the company’s archives (not to mention vintage dealers and eBay) to infuse the collection with historically accurate detailing and fabrication. I stopped by GANT’s offices last week to get a sneak peek at the new offerings, and ultimately found out exactly what I’m going to be wearing next summer.

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Many of the designs for the SS10 line are literally pulled from archival pieces collected over the past 60 years, like the faded Indian Madras to tasty primary colored polo shirts. Many details in the collection are historically significant, from the “diamond G” logo which used to be stamped onto the company’s shirts before GANT became its own brand, when it manufactured shirts for some of most prominent brands in the menswear, to the “locker loop” on the back of the button-down shirts that the company invented and even buttons that haven’t seen the light of day for forty years.

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Below: “The Hugger” sure to make you tipsy in oxford cloth.

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Below: a removed locker loop signified to the ladies that you were “taken.” Looks like (for better or worse) this shirt comes with a significant other.

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Below: Selvage oxford cloth, rivaling smoking and drinking for the world’s best combination.

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Below: The “diamond G” logo reborn.

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In addition to the button-downs and polos seen here, the line also includes khaki pants, rugby shirts, tailored goods and some very nice looking outerwear all inspired by GANTs heritage. All-in-all GANT did it right, looking to its heritage and giving guys the best of both worlds, classic style with an updated fit.

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Below: Vintage private label GANT shirts for various American men’s shops.

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Below: a group of vintage ads from the late 1950′s that first appeared in the New Yorker.

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Comments: 25

25 Comments to “First Look | GANT Rugger SS10”

  1. Tucker
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 8:59 AM

    I’d wondered what happened to my old pink Gant batiste oxford.

  2. Chad
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 9:27 AM

    That looks like my wardrobe…..

  3. jeremy
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 9:30 AM

    Did they do the RUGGER tag down the inside placket of the polos?

  4. C.
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 10:13 AM

    You write “vintage dealers on Ebay”. I have spent some time on Ebay, but seldom finding good stuff. Do you have any particular favourite sellers recomended to follow?

  5. Robin
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 11:23 AM

    “All-in-all GANT did it right, looking to its heritage and giving guys the best of both worlds, classic style with an updated fit.”

    Except they screwed up by putting logos on them.

  6. Michael Williams
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 12:16 PM

    Charles,

    If you are wondering why your comment got moderated, see the comments policy on the About page.

    ACL

  7. Brad
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 12:20 PM

    Any mention of where they’re made?

  8. citizen wayne
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 1:17 PM

    Do you know if the fit is on the slim side? Do all the BD’s have the Diamond G logo on the chest pocket? Thanks Michael.

  9. Ryan
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 2:01 PM

    I dunno. I feel like I’ve seen this brand with its over-logoed shirts (thatappeared to be super boxy in fit), at discount retailers for so long that the brand is forever tainted for me.

  10. tom
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 2:20 PM

    Can’t wait to see the khakis… I’m moving back to the Northeast after a few years in L.A. so I’m going to need to prep-ify my wardrobe a little… This collection looks great.

  11. Paul
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 2:20 PM

    I remeber you could get 3 Gant button downs for $15 at the Yale Co-op. It was cool to wear their starched white Oxfords in high school with white (actually off-white) levis and desert boots. Gant and Sero were the two that I remember in New Haven. I’m thinking there was one more, but I just can’t remember the name. Thanks for the post and I’m looking forward to something new (old) from Gant soon.

  12. The Look
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 2:29 PM

    Great post. Good to see a direction like this from GANT, something along the lines of Gitman Vintage.

  13. gelos-grapos
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 5:05 PM

    Nothing beats the prep look ….. long live “Americana”.

    My only question thought is where is this collection made?

    Too much to hope for an authentic “Made in USA” label I suppose.

  14. hugh lester
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 5:44 PM

    i have seen these samples as well. they did a great job. those swedes know exactly what they are doing.

  15. Chris
    on Jun 22nd, 2009
    @ 7:29 PM

    Tucker, this is going to sound kind of weird, but being an avid reader of your blog, that was my Exact thought when I found that pink OCBD.

    Good things come to those who wait.

  16. Peter
    on Jun 23rd, 2009
    @ 7:39 AM

    I really wish they hadn’t added that “G” logo. Yes, Gant went way downmarket, but I think there’s hope. Look at Woolrich.

    I’ve had a few oxfors with that third collar button and wondered why it wasn’t more popular. For some reason I have a hard time keeping my collars staying folded in the right spot.

    I will check them out, though. That selvedge looks really comfortable.

  17. sam
    on Jun 23rd, 2009
    @ 6:20 PM

    Peter I have the same problem, the shirt I’m wearing right now is driving me crazy (this is one reason I still like Ben Sherman even if most of there stuff looks like printed puke now).

  18. John Gall
    on Jun 24th, 2009
    @ 4:39 PM

    This is all very well. The styles look great. But it’s not made in USA is it? It’s yet more cheap third world stuff dressed up to look like the beautifully made old things. Sounds like the Ralph Lauren formula to me. How depressing, and what a missed opportunity.

  19. Martin
    on Jun 25th, 2009
    @ 4:55 AM

    Ralph Lauren was 10 years old when GANT was established and soon became the biggest shirtmaker in the US… Its great to see a brand with so much REAL heritage make a strong comeback. The collection looks amazing and can’t wait to see the rest of it!

  20. fb
    on Jun 25th, 2009
    @ 4:37 PM

    The GANT clothes that’s being sold in U.S now is actually the “european” line. GANT outside of US was, until a couple of years, a completely different clothing line. The GANT brand was purchased by three swedes, then sold to british private equity company 3i, then they made the company public and then Maus Freres S.A (owner of Lacoste) bought it. The company head quarter is still in Sweden.

    The shirts in the Rugger-line are slim fit and my three shirts are all made in Portugal.

  21. Hugo
    on Jun 26th, 2009
    @ 3:17 AM

    I, too, love three-button collars. I wish I could find some short-sleeved shirts with three-button collars and decorative buttons on the sleeves, just above the notch–what a sweet look that was!

  22. Paco
    on Jun 28th, 2009
    @ 8:07 PM

    The button on the back of the color is authentic Gant. But the hokey pre-broken locker loop and hideous pocket logo are deal breakers for anyone who wore the real thing back in the day.

    Before the era of semi-continuous sales and outlet stores on every block getting a deal at a real factory outlet was something special. There was a Gant factory in the late ’60s on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, Salisbury if I recall correctly (Note to Made in U.S.A. fanatics too young to recall: New England textile and clothing manufacturers moved to the American South for cheap, low skill labor before they moved abroad for cheap, low skill labor). College and high school guys going to Ocean City, MD to party stopped there to buy overstock and seconds for – what? – maybe $2.50 per shirt.

    As for where an item is made I’ve become agnostic. If the quality’s there – and it often is – I don’t care that strongly where it’s made. And if the quality’s not there then don’t buy it.

    BTW, if you visit – to cite just one example – Filson’s Seattle factory I defy you tell the difference between it and the one in China where most of Filson’s employees’ sisters and cousins still work (and where no doubt some of Filson’s Seattle employees worked themselves until recently.) Just sayin’.

  23. designerman
    on Jun 29th, 2009
    @ 3:39 AM

    nice to see some illustration…

  24. Meet Masako Kaufman « Full Frontal Fashion
    on Nov 6th, 2009
    @ 3:11 AM

    [...] Gant Rugger is a secondary line from Gant, and I am launching it to United Arrows exclusively for the SS10 season. This was not selling in Japan before, so I am looking forward to seeing how it does. Plus, I am very excited that Michael Bastian is designing Gant’s line for the FW10 collection. [...]

  25. bob
    on Jan 25th, 2010
    @ 5:34 PM

    where can i buy your product in Toronto, ontario?