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Not to be confused with Prepper.

Preppy or prep (all abbreviations of the word preparatory) refer to a subculture in the United States associated with the old private Northeastern university-preparatory schools. The terms are used to denote a person seen as characteristic of a student or alumnus of these schools.[1] Prep has become a colloquialism in the United States and has largely replaced preppy in modern usage. Characteristics of preps in the past, include a particular subcultural speech, vocabulary, dress, mannerisms, etiquette, reflective of an upper-class upbringing.[2]

Definition[edit]

The term preppy derives from the private, university-preparatory or prep schools that some American upper-class and upper-middle-class children attend.[3] The term preppy is commonly associated with the Ivy League and oldest universities in the Northeast, since traditionally a primary goal in attending a prep school was admittance into one of these institutions.[3] Preppy fashion derives from the fashions of these old Northeastern colleges in the early to mid-twentieth century. Lisa Birnbach's 1980 book Official Preppy Handbook, which was written to poke fun at the rich lives of privileged Ivy League and socially elite liberal arts college students but ended up glamorizing the culture, portrays the preppy social group as well-educated, well-connected, and although exclusive, courteous to other social groups without fostering serious relationships with them. Being well-educated and well-connected is associated with an upper-class socioeconomic status that emphasizes higher education and high-income professional success.[4]

Fashion[edit]

For men, preppy fashion has its roots in the Ivy League style of dress, which started around 1912 and became more established in the late 1950s.[5] J. Press represented the quintessential Ivy League style, stemming from the collegiate traditions of Ivy League schools. In the mid-twentieth century J. Press and Brooks Brothers both had stores on Ivy League school campuses, including Harvard, Princeton, and Yale. Preppy fashion emerged in the 1970s with cues from the original Ivy League style. Some typical preppy styles also reflect traditional upper-class leisure activities, once associated with the wealthy English who once had a strong political and social position in the Northeast and New England, such as polo, sailing, hunting, fencing, crew rowing, lacrosse, golf, tennis, rugby, and swimming. This association with old English inspired outdoor activities can be seen in preppy fashion, through stripes and colors, equestrian clothing, plaid shirts, field jackets, and nautical-themed accessories. By the 1980s, mass marketing of brands such as Lacoste, Daniel Cremieux, Izod,[6] and Dooney & Bourke became associated with preppy style in many areas of the US and Canada.

For women, preppy-influenced fashions emerged in the 1960s, a trend led by designers such as Perry Ellis and Lilly Pulitzer, influenced by designers such as Oleg Cassini, and popularized by female students at the Seven Sisters Colleges, sister institutions to the Ivy League.[7] These classic ensembles of the 1960s and 1970s include tailored skirt suits, low heels, wrap dresses, shift dresses, silk or cotton blouses, and jewelry with a refined style. Such clothing often includes elements drawn from typical preppy style, such as nautical stripes, pastel colours, or equestrian details. Some "cultural icons" of preppy style for professional women include Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, and 20th century New York socialites Gloria Guinness, Babe Paley, Slim Keith, and C. Z. Guest, all women whose style is often referenced by designers.[8]

Though traditional interest in preppy style has fallen in the last 25 years [according to whom?], some of the newer outfitters such as Ralph Lauren, J. Crew, Vineyard Vines, and Elizabeth McKay are frequently perceived as having preppy styles, with designers such as Marc Jacobs and Luella Bartley adding the preppy style into their clothes in the 1990s.[9] The term "preppy" came back into widespread use in the late 1990s through mid 2000s but took on a much different meaning from the original term.

Examples of preppy attire include argyle sweaters, crewneck sweaters, grosgrain or woven leather belts, chinos, madras,[2] Nantucket Reds,[2] button down Oxford cloth shirts,[6] pearl necklaces and earrings, gold bangle or large chain bracelets, penny loafers, polo shirts (often with a popped collar), and boat shoes.[2]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dictionary.com definition of 'preppy'
  2. ^ a b c d Colman, David (17 June 2009). "The All-American Back From Japan". The New York Times. 
  3. ^ a b Fashion Encyclopedia article
  4. ^ The true roots of preppy
  5. ^ Elements of Fashion and Apparel Design. New Age Publishers. p. 25. ISBN 81-224-1371-4. Ivy League: A popular look for men in the fifties that originated on such campuses as Harvard, Priceton [sic] and Yale; a forerunner to the preppie look; a style characterized by button down collar shirts and pants with a small buckle in the back. 
  6. ^ a b Peterson, Amy T., and Ann T. Kellogg (2008). The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Clothing Through American History 1900 to the Present: 1900–1949. ABC-CLIO. p. 285. ISBN 978-0-313-04334-5. 
  7. ^ Peter R. Eisenstadt, Laura-Eve Moss, ed. (2005). The Encyclopedia of New York State. Syracuse University Press. p. 550. ISBN 978-0-8156-0808-0. 
  8. ^ MacDonell, Nancy (2007). In the Know: The Classic Guide to Being Cultured and Cool. Penguin. p. No page. ISBN 978-1-4406-1976-2. 
  9. ^ "The preppy look a brief history". Retrieved 25 April 2012.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Preppy — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.

78166 news items

Monroe News Star

Monroe News Star
Mon, 08 Feb 2016 09:48:45 -0800

NEW YORK — Will preppy ever go out of style? Not if Tommy Hilfiger can help it. But guardians of prep like Hilfiger most definitely need to adapt, he said Wednesday as he presented his Hilfiger Edition line aimed at "feeling necessary, youthful and ...

The Columbian

The Columbian
Fri, 05 Feb 2016 06:03:45 -0800

“These guys want preppy but they want preppy in a new way, and we're giving it to them a little bit oversized again,” Hilfiger said ahead of his presentation on the third day of New York Fashion Week: Men's. “We were very slim for quite a few years but ...

GQ Magazine

GQ Magazine
Mon, 01 Feb 2016 11:18:45 -0800

That said, it's always tricky to divorce the polo from its preppy-athletic origins. Allow Justin Theroux, Hollywood's most stylish kinda-goth, to present his theory: Buy it in black, button it up, and wear it with skinny jeans and boots. While this ...

ARL now

ARL now
Thu, 04 Feb 2016 07:34:09 -0800

The Pink Palm will be moving from Old Dominion Drive in McLean to the Market Common Clarendon shopping center, as soon as mid-to-late spring. The store will be located at 2871 Clarendon Blvd, in the former Knightsbridge Trading Co. space. The Pink ...

Nooga.com

Nooga.com
Sat, 30 Jan 2016 05:41:15 -0800

The DIY Designer: Preppy polka dot chair makeover. By Jenna LaFevor - Published on January 30, 2016. Instead of reupholstering this chair, I opted to try my hand at painting the upholstery. While this isn't ideal for chairs that would get a lot of use ...

CTV News

CTV News
Wed, 03 Feb 2016 20:21:35 -0800

"These guys want preppy but they want preppy in a new way, and we're giving it to them a little bit oversized again," Hilfiger said in an interview ahead of his presentation on the third day of New York Fashion Week: Men's. "We were very slim for quite ...

Atlanta Journal Constitution

Atlanta Journal Constitution
Fri, 15 Jan 2016 20:52:30 -0800

Want more news? Sign up for free newsletters to get more of the AJC delivered to your inbox. A bookcase in Travis Snyder's dining room is deceptive. It looks like it's built in, but the splurge piece from Ballard Designs fits just right into a 12-foot ...

Daily Mail

Daily Mail
Mon, 25 Jan 2016 07:13:26 -0800

Finishing off her look, Margot swamped her slender figure with a mid-length coat by Fay complete with a hood while carrying a fully packed rucksack on her back, adding to the preppy aesthetic. While inside the terminal, she removed her oversized ...
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