As a youngster stripes were one of the first trad items that I recognized as cool. They have a flashiness that appeals to youth, but when paired with the primarily subdued clothes of a trad that flash is reduced to a mere glimpse of color. However, moderation is not always an easy lesson to learn, especially when young, but this post is not about how to use stripes. It is about items with stripes that I would have liked to wear when I was in high school or even college.
Ralph Lauren Ribbon Loafers: $450
The Ralph Lauren loafers above were the inspiration for this post. Embellished with not only striped grosgrain, but a leather strap and buckle as well. These loafer are not for the unadventurous. And while they may not be the best choice for the office I think that they would do well on a college campus.
Smart Turnout T-Shirt: $55
The next item up is a t-shirt from Smart Turnout. Better known for their vast offerings of striped watchbands and socks the folks over at Smart Turnout will incorporate stripes into just about anything. What I like most about this t-shirt is that the stripes are limited to pocket; restrained, but definitely noticeable. I think that this would be an excellent choice(grey more so than white) for a middle school, high school, or even college student who is in need of a t-shirt for the gym, chores, or just lounging around the house.
Stripes are the equivalent to a gateway drug for trad clothing. making them a great way for young people to dip their toe into the trad world. In fact, I encourage them to indulge (in a responsible way. Do not wear matching striped belt, socks, and watchband. Or socks and belt. Or more than on item. Or…) and I hope that they continue down this path until they find themselves clad in shetlands, cords, and oxford cloth.