There is a great American Trad story in the Isetan spring 2009 catalog that I thought was worth highlighting here. The Isetan in Shinjuku is one of the most impressive stores in the world, a labyrinth of materialistic pursuits. In fact, the men’s shoe section nearly made me cry. These clothes below might not be identified or available for purchase to most of us, but I thought they are great from a styling / photography perspective. Enjoy.
The 1956 movie based on Sloan Wilson’s best seller is one of my all time favorite films. It served as the inspiration for some of my modern day obsessions like Mad Men. There are even some excellent images in Take Ivy that document the same type of Madison Avenue business man from the late 50s early 1960s. Long before we had Thom Browne and Donald Draper there was Mr. Gregory Peck in his gray flannel suit.
Who says you can’t afford anything from a Savile Row tailor. The much admired tailor Norton & Sons have recently released their Trotters Bag. Per the company website. “The Trotter, the most junior rank on Savile Row, trots between cutting rooms and workrooms, carrying bundles of cloth and trimmings to the sewing tailors and returning with sewn garments. At Norton & Sons our trotters use a traditional stout canvas Trotters Bag.”
I don’t think it gets more insider than to own one of these bags, although I would much prefer to show my rank with a Norton & Sons suit.
The good people at Southwick sent along the spring summer 2009 catalog. There has been a buzz around the storied American brand with the collaboration with Engineered Garments and more recently the company’s acquisition by Brooks Brothers. Plans for Southwick were further discussed in DNR today. “In an interview, Claudio Del Vecchio, CEO of Brooks, said Southwick is a “major supplier” to Brooks Brothers, ‘so we were very interested in them and seeing them improve their quality.’” I think Southwick being sold to Brooks Brothers isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Like others, I hope that Brooks will do the right thing and keep Southwick pure.
The August issue of GQ is out and as to be expected, it is great. Just when you thought it couldn’t get better than the Summer Dresses Summer Suits story in July they hit you with Mr. John Slattery AKA Roger Sterling cloaked head-to-toe in plaid goodness.
Looking through these catalogs from 1958-1963 it is easy to see that not much has changed at J. Press. Back in 1958 a cotton Seersucker sportcoat was a good deal at $59.50. That very same sportcoat (or a similar style) is still offered today from J. Press for $395.00 ($296.25 if you factor in the sale that is currently going on). Now, if you adjust the 1958 price of $59.50 for inflation, the seersucker jacket would cost $433.62 in todays money. So the J. Press seersucker is beating inflation — sounds like a good investment to me.
It is interesting to see all of the two-button models that were offered way back when. Most people like to think that J. Press only sells Sack suits, but it is clear from these pictures that that is simply not the case.
All of the scans link to Flickr, once there click “all sizes” to see the hi-res versions.