As I may have discussed in past articles, style can be categorized by what the fashion world refers to as the style tribes. Just to review, style tribes are a group of individuals that come together based on their personal style. For example, hippie-style, punk-style, rasta-style, etcetera. Now these styles, while changing and evolving, never really go “out” of fashion. The style tribe that is currently winning the race, in terms of most popular in the ready-to-wear industry, is the preppy-style. This style goes by many aliases, including country club style and ivy league style. Today’s fashion is a modern day interpretation of this rather conservative style.
I’m not saying this style is for everyone, but it may be something you want to try, just in case you’re trying to reinvent your look. My readers know I love talking about the “bad boy” style. This couldn’t be the farthest thing from. The preppy style is the quintessential “good boy”. This style used to be indicative of class and monetary wealth and, in some ways, it still is. So wanting to learn more about this style myself, I did some inside investigating to see what are some essential elements that need to be addressed when wanting to successfully try this style. While you read these style tips, try to imagine a tennis instructor at a country club and what he or she might wear.
1. Polo– Not talking about the brand POLO by Ralph Lauren (although not a bad place to look for inspiration). I’m talking about the collared t-shirt more commonly called a “polo”. I DARE you guys to find a picture of someone rocking the preppy chic who isn’t wearing a polo. That is how important this item of clothing is to this style tribe. Usually the color palate for the polo is very specific. Because this style tends to be conservative, traditionalists wear white or pastel colors; but who says you can’t reinvent and put your own spunk on this style.
2. Shorts- This to me is the most interesting aspect about this style. Unlike the skater and surfer chic styles of today, the preppy look has always included a pair of NON SAGGING, above the knee, or at the knee, shorts. I’m ashamed to say that I actually made fun of these when my dad used to wear them in the early 2000s. Now I look like the fool because I’m wondering where he got his latest pair. To me, these shorts add an element of crispness to the overall look. The fact that they fit the body nicely and are perfectly straight from the waist gives this straight, perfection that the preppy style is known for. I think this is where you can get a little creative in terms of color and print. The bolder the color and/or print, the farther away from the original style you get. So, it really all depends on how close you want to stick to the original style. My opinion: go wild! Don’t be a cookie cutter! Invent your own style!
3. Aesthetics– This tip is more of a suggestion to what kind of aesthetics would go into building the preppy style. The first thing, that I previously stated, is clean. Those following the preppy persuasion are very into clean cut aesthetics. For us guys, that means clean shaven, styled, short hair, and “manscaped”. But as I have been saying throughout this whole article, feel free to break these rules! Rarely do I ever say this, but these rules are guidelines! Alter the style, change things up! That’s what makes fashion fun! Make yourself one of a kind.