Friday, August 31, 2012

Richard Press and Ivy Style at the Museum at FIT

Richard Press, former president of J. Press, and Patricia Mears, Deputy Director, The Museum at FIT on the  Set of the Upcoming Exhibition
On September 14, the Ivy Style Exhibition will open at The Museum at FIT (The Fashion Institute of Technology)  in New York City.  Christian over at Ivy Style has been giving some sneak peaks (and I did an entry in April) , and I thought I would add to that.


Due to the high production values (and the unprecedented collaboration of Richard Press, G. Bruce Boyer, and Patricia Mears), it is sometimes easy for me to forget that this show's primary audience includes students who often come with a (mis)perspective that this material is ancient, dusty history. What instead they hopefully will see is the energy of this style, both then and now.

Here is a tour with Richard Press, two weeks before it opens, and also snapshots of some of the other people who are making it happen.

Richard Press inspects the new sign.


With Julian Clark, Museum Publications Editor


Patricia Mears, Deputy Director, The Museum at FIT
Visitors will first see some of the publications of the time.






An Early Reference to Prep

Michael Goitia, Exhibitions Manager
The heart of the exhibition is a series of sets that organize and provide some amalgamated historical context for the items of clothes.  This includes the center quad scene.  Music from the times will also set the scene.




Boris Chesakov, Exhibitions Production Coordinator, stands in front of the chemistry classroom set.


The library set features this "view". (It is also a good Rorschach test. My first thought when I saw it was this picture.)


Fred Dennis, Senior Curator, (far left) and Erik Steding, Installation Designer, (far right) collaborate in the "formal" setting where the tuxedos will go.


To the right of the formal set will be a model of a classic store of the time, complete with stacked shelves.


A Favorite Picture


Gabby Lauricella, Exhibitions Installation Team, (left) and Ann Coppinger, Senior Conservator, (right) stand in front of the bedroom set.




These wooden locker room doors will be under a stained glass window.


All that was missing was Mr. Boyer.



The clothes themselves were still being prepped.











Tommy Synnamon, Exhibition Installer and Stylist









Every detail is scrutinized.


Emma McClendon, Curatorial Assistant
Ann Coppinger, Senior Conservator, and Julian Clark, Museum Publications Editor
Jennifer Farley, Assistant Curator


Sonia Dingilian, Museum Registrar
The security around these clothes is impressively high.

















 The book is appropriately dedicated to Richard, both for his influence on the book and show, but also on the entire industry.  He was a guiding force behind the Ivy Style aesthetic during its time of worldwide growth. 






Patricia Mears generously gives credit to the blogger community for demonstrating the enduring appeal of this style. 
When you have a world-class team assembled, what should any sane person do?  Ask for autographs!













32 comments:

Anonymous said...

First, I want to congratulate you on your blog, as I think that it is of great quality. I am so glad to follow your blog as I will not be able to go and see the exhibition. I have to say that it is a privilege to see such a preview and the many individuals who have worked so hard at putting the exhibition altogether. This looks like it will be an amazing exhibition. Continue what you are doing Mrs. Aldrich!

TC said...

Looks terrific, Muffy. Wish I could be there. Thanks for the post. Any chance someone will be on hand to record the panel discussion? What a lineup - I'd hate to miss any of their wisdom.

Slone Ranger said...

We are going up in early October to visit and cannot wait!

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful tribute you have given your father. -God bless you. . . from Lagunie

TropicalSunbird said...

Wow! It looks like it will be a wonderful exhibit. Your father's jackets are still beautiful. (And you were mentioned in the book too, awesome!)

That's one thing I miss about D.C. were all of those magnificent museums. I would go to one whenever I needed a dose of culture, history, plus some peace and quiet.

Bitsy said...

Thank you for this peek at what looks to be a fantastic exhibition! The photos are just wonderful. Thanks, too, for the link to pre-order the book.

Anonymous said...

Fantastic! I can't attend and so am very pleased to see your extensive pre-coverage of the event. Your father's blue blazer is in good company.

Anonymous said...

It's seems so contradictory for FIT to showcase Ivy style as it is more of a uniform and the point of Ivy is not to show creativity but conformity... not what FIT teaches to its students. But I can understand the recognition of enduring style which is why we all love preppy clothing so much!

WRJ said...

Congratulations on being a part of what should be a really great exhibition! I'm looking forward to visiting it sometime soon. Even in photos, the set is striking and evocative. Is it all Yale? While the newer Gothic buildings are certainly iconic of the Ivy League, I hope some of the original Georgians made their way in, too.

I'd kill for the blue wide-wale cords shown with the cabled fisherman sweater and tartan shirt--it's now near-impossible to find decent flat-front wide-wales. And appropriately-scaled club ties like those in the exhibition seem to be a thing of the past, too. But did I spy a cashmere shrunken snowsuit thingie from Thom Browne, and a jacket emblazoned with studs and pink puppies? I can't help but be disappointed by the incursion of these modern "twists" (i.e., bastardizations) into what otherwise looks like an oasis of authenticity.

Anonymous said...

Very cool. Tell them to send in on to Chicago. That loud green blazer reminds me of my father.

Paul Connors said...

Nothing that Thom Browne designs is Preppy.


NOTHING!

Sue said...

Great pictorial - but I notice they have only focused on male attire. Will there be a female followup on such fashions as the Fair-Isle yoke Sweater, Lily Pulitzer, Pappagallo etc,

Dean Farris said...

As an alum of FIT, I can tell you, FIT is the IVY of all the so called fashion schools... Most of my faculty in the early 80's had come over from Parsons. Great post btw!

InfoDiva said...

I can't help but notice that none of the young curators of this exhibition seem to have an interest in prep style for their own wardrobes.

It makes me wonder if they, and their audience, view duffel coats and cable knit sweaters with mild amusement, finding them as dated and outré as high collars, bustles, and hoop skirts.

InfoDiva said...

Wonderful background information on J. Press and an interview with Paul Press (perhaps the father of Richard Press?) and his time with the company in its heyday here:

http://yjhm.yale.edu/archives/lifetales/mwilson.htm

Anonymous said...

The picture is not of Yale but of a Princeton dorm. The Show looks fantastic, and I am telling everyone I know.

HHH said...

Sang your praises at a dinner party last night, Muffy, and can't wait to see the show. Now everyone up here in Litchfield County will want to worship at the chapel to prep attire. Maybe we can arrange a NSCDA-CT outing! Funny, though, to imagine that going on at the FIT.

Anonymous said...

"Maybe we can arrange a NSCDA-CT outing!"

Why limit it to CT? Take Muffy across the USA via NSCDA nationwide, I'll happily get you on our calendar here at NSCDA-FL.

-Flo

Jourdan said...

Enjoyed your post. What about clothing for women? I cannot tell precisely if they are included in this exhibit or not. I gather not because no mention is made of any of the Seven Sisters.

Michael Rowe said...

This entirely warrants its own trip to Manhattan.

Ann said...

What a neat exhibition. Thanks for sharing!

Elizabeth H. said...

This looks great!!! I hope that we make it to NY before it closes.

Question: I need new khakis, and I want them to be khaki, not stone. Any suggestions? Thanks!

Gordon said...

This might just get me back to NYC. You've been blessed. Thanks for the blog.

BlueTrain said...

Yes, at one time it was called "Ivy League" or "collegiate." But observe that while the fashions do change a little, the style stays the same. The differences are sometimes subtle, sometimes more noticeable, sometimes for the absense of things. Men don't wear hats the way they used to, for instance.

The best man in our wedding, definately a preppie (Sidwell Friends), wore pullover dress shirts, no doubt impossible to find these days. I don't recall if he had a duffle coat but he did have a "British Warm."

On the other hand, my late father-in-law, definately not a preppie (D.C. Public Schools), was given to wearing bowties and was therefore in a special class just the same.

sailormadras said...

Hmmm, looks like someone raided my closet.......

Katherine Wilkinson said...

Is the blue Crew jacket a St. Paul's School Shattuck jacket? Looks like it!

Anonymous said...

I just found the Princeton band in the book! I love it. Thanks for this preview - I just ordered the book and I will bring it when I go to hear Richard Press speak.

Patsy said...

Muffy, the photo of your Dad in the book is fabulous!

Anonymous said...

Wow, LOVE the exhibits. I think we may need to take a trip. --Holly in PA

Lindsay said...

Muffy, I was wondering if you have a favourite brand or style of socks? Sorry if this question has been covered somewhere already.

Really enjoying your blog, keep it up!

Bink said...

For some reason the box didn't open to sign my post, the clothing/sock comment was mine. Sorry.

Jeff Volimas said...

Does anyone know where I might obtain "fun" dress socks that I might wear with my suits Ala Bush 41? Thank you.

Jeff