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Need help creating a Classical preppy college wardrobe

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I'm currently a senior at a private high school, and I'll be heeded to a small preppy liberal arts college next year. I'm trying to create a list of items I need for my wardrobe. I'm an extremely traditional scholarly guy. I've researched the various preppy styles, and I've decided I'm going for the Ivy League Style.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivy_League_(clothes)
I know the basic things I'd need ( suits, dress shirts, ties, khakis, penny loafers, etc) but I'm not sure how much of every item I'll need.
Here's my list of stuff so far
1 gray suit
1 navy blazer
6 dress shirts (3 blue, 3 white)
2 pairs of khakis
1 Shetland crewneck sweater(for cooler weather)
1 pair of brown penny loafers
1 pair of dress shoes
1 tweed sports jacket
4 polos
I'd get most of this from Brooks Brothers(seeing as that's the brand that was popular on Ivy League campuses during the 50s) Do I have enough clothes here? On weekdays, I'd wear the suit/blazer with a dress shirt, tie, khakis, and dress shoes. On Saturdays when I'm out doing stuff, I'd wear a polo with khakis and penny loafers. I'd return to my weekday attire for church on Sundays. I'd wear the sports jacket for extremely formal occasions ( church, convocation, other assemblies) My only fear is that I won't have enough khakis. Is 2 pairs enough?
post #2 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by BaronKhan17 View Post

I'm currently a senior at a private high school, and I'll be heeded to a small preppy liberal arts college next year. I'm trying to create a list of items I need for my wardrobe. I'm an extremely traditional scholarly guy. I've researched the various preppy styles, and I've decided I'm going for the Ivy League Style.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivy_League_(clothes)
I know the basic things I'd need ( suits, dress shirts, ties, khakis, penny loafers, etc) but I'm not sure how much of every item I'll need.
Here's my list of stuff so far
1 gray suit
1 navy blazer
6 dress shirts (3 blue, 3 white)
2 pairs of khakis
1 Shetland crewneck sweater(for cooler weather)
1 pair of brown penny loafers
1 pair of dress shoes
1 tweed sports jacket
4 polos
I'd get most of this from Brooks Brothers(seeing as that's the brand that was popular on Ivy League campuses during the 50s) Do I have enough clothes here? On weekdays, I'd wear the suit/blazer with a dress shirt, tie, khakis, and dress shoes. On Saturdays when I'm out doing stuff, I'd wear a polo with khakis and penny loafers. I'd return to my weekday attire for church on Sundays. I'd wear the sports jacket for extremely formal occasions ( church, convocation, other assemblies) My only fear is that I won't have enough khakis. Is 2 pairs enough?

 

 

I'm going to ask our resident Trad/Ivy scholar @Caustic Man to weigh in on this one.  You'll probably enjoy this http://www.styleforum.net/t/524710/moneywellspents-southern-trad-thread

post #3 of 16

Thanks for tagging me, Murl.

 

The first thing I wonder is how you are looking at this project. Are you trying to fit in at a "preppy" college in 2017? If so, forget the suits and blazers. Students wouldn't even wear that stuff to class in the 1960s. Blazers and suits were largely for official functions and church. The rest of the week students dress very casually. Khakis are a good bet, but instead of a blazer, think untucked OCBD (tucked was "proper" but many students eschewed this). Penny loafers are great, but always worn very casually. Dressing preppy is fine, but you don't want to look like you are wearing costume.

post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caustic Man View Post

Thanks for tagging me, Murl.

The first thing I wonder is how you are looking at this project. Are you trying to fit in at a "preppy" college in 2017? If so, forget the suits and blazers. Students wouldn't even wear that stuff to class in the 1960s. Blazers and suits were largely for official functions and church. The rest of the week students dress very casually. Khakis are a good bet, but instead of a blazer, think untucked OCBD (tucked was "proper" but many students eschewed this). Penny loafers are great, but always worn very casually. Dressing preppy is fine, but you don't want to look like you are wearing costume.
Well the college is interesting. When I visited, I saw guys who had various "preppy" styles. In class, some guys wore a blazer/suit, others just wore a polo. So I think I'd be fine in blazers. Is what I have listed OK?
post #5 of 16

Are you attending Hampden Sydney?

post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caustic Man View Post
 

Are you attending Hampden Sydney?

Sewanee.

post #7 of 16
Ok, that counts. But even Sewanee varies to a degree. I think you have more than enough. Though if you can afford more pairs of khakis then go for it. I still think wearing a suit to class is a bit much, but having it in case of official functions is nice.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caustic Man View Post

Ok, that counts. But even Sewanee varies to a degree. I think you have more than enough. Though if you can afford more pairs of khakis then go for it. I still think wearing a suit to class is a bit much, but having it in case of official functions is nice.
Thanks for the advice. Let's assume I have 3 or 4 pairs of khakis. How many days in a row is it acceptable to wear the same khakis? If I had 4 pairs of khakis, could I wear one pair a week?
post #9 of 16
These are some awfully peculiar questions.

Don't wear dirty looking (or smelling) clothes. Shoes excepted (well, not the smelly part). How is that?
post #10 of 16

Yeah, they kind of could be seen as strange questions, but maybe not ... BaronKhan, are you considering the personal uniform? If so, that's quite a good idea. It worked for Steve Jobs and a few other people.

 

If so, then you could just buy four pairs of Chinos that are exactly the same and rotate them.

 

It's not a good idea to wear the same pair every day, so you'd be better off alternating each pair one day to the next. This allows the fabric to "rest" between wears. It's a rule that is mostly used for knitwear, but it might be useful for all natural fibers, even though the fabric of Chinos is quite densely woven.

 

If you wore the same type Chino every day with alternating Oxford shirts, then that would work out fine, as long as you don't mind being associated with that specific look. If it's a look you consciously want to cultivate, however, then that's a positive thing. 

 

By the way, you probably don't need the grey suit. You should concentrate on separates as a student, especially since a Sports Jacket/Blazer with Chinos would suffice for most occasions that require dressing to a slightly higher standard. Maybe the money you save on a suit could be put towards a third Sports Jacket or Blazer. That would be much more versatile than being constrained with the suit.

post #11 of 16

Instead of double downing or getting multiple of the same color khaki, why not add navy, grey, and olive.

 

 

And for the shirts, instead of 3 white and 3 blue, add some patterns, muted patterns. University stripe in blue and/or pink, white/blue windowpane, blue tatterall...

post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by jacksonkeeper View Post
 

Instead of double downing or getting multiple of the same color khaki, why not add navy, grey, and olive.

 

 

And for the shirts, instead of 3 white and 3 blue, add some patterns, muted patterns. University stripe in blue and/or pink, white/blue windowpane, blue tatterall...

 

There is a case for that, although every time I've done something like that, for variety's sake, I've regretted it. What can happen is you end up with a favourite colour that you wear more often, and the least favourite colours are neglected. Then you can end up going "Man, if only I just bought three of my favourite colour, since I'd be happy wearing that every day ...".

post #13 of 16


My gut is khakis 2 x week. That's not a rule, but I would aim for that. 

post #14 of 16
The Official Preppy Handbook was written in a tongue-in-cheek style back in the early '80s but most of the sartorial advice translates pretty well into modern times. Worth checking it out. https://www.amazon.com/Official-Preppy-Handbook-Lisa-Birnbach/dp/0894801406

You're going to a southern school and southern prep has a little outdoorsy edge to it. One thing to keep in mind, southern Tennessee can be miserably hot in Aug-Sep and May-June so you'll want some khaki or seersucker shorts, polo shirts (BB, Lacoste), ribbon or grosgrain printed belts, LL Bean camp or blucher moccasins or maybe Tretorn canvas tennis shoes, etc. Conversely, it can also get pretty damn cold there in winter, so invest in a Barbour/Filson waxed cotton coat (Beaufort is a popular model), LL Bean Boots, wide wale corduroy pants and some Shetland sweaters.

And learn how to drink. Sewanee has a reputation as a serious drinking school. Good luck!
post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caustic Man View Post

Thanks for tagging me, Murl.

The first thing I wonder is how you are looking at this project. Are you trying to fit in at a "preppy" college in 2017? If so, forget the suits and blazers. Students wouldn't even wear that stuff to class in the 1960s. Blazers and suits were largely for official functions and church. The rest of the week students dress very casually. Khakis are a good bet, but instead of a blazer, think untucked OCBD (tucked was "proper" but many students eschewed this). Penny loafers are great, but always worn very casually. Dressing preppy is fine, but you don't want to look like you are wearing costume.

Can't agree more with this statement. Very easy to overdo it and end up ruining the look.
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