The Rugby Rush

Rarely do the words trad and on-trend get mentioned in the same sentence, but lately I have been feeling ahead of the style curve. There has recently been an uptick in rugby releases from everyone from Ralph Lauren to the up-and-coming Rowing Blazers. As you may know I love a good rugby and I am happy to see them return.

I won’t harp on the virtues of rubgy shirts for too long. They seem to be an item that people like or hate. There are always a lot of questions about them being for kids, or too casual, or too something. I find them super easy to wear casually from throwing it on for a walk, wearing it to the gym like a sweatshirt, or even layering it over an OCBD. Simple, easy, and kinda cool.

Below are some of the rubgy shirts that are currently available. I love the rugby from Rowing Blazers, but the price is a little steep. Despite having them listed last I recommend Barbarian and Columbia Knit. I am a big fan of Barbarian and have several of their shirts. I also think that Columbia knit has a great selection of hoop stripes (20 in all), a great price, and a solid product.

If you do end up copping a rugby be prepared for both Blue’s Clues and Gilligan’s Island references. It will be annoying and it will happen, but don’t let that stop you!


Polo Ralph Lauren $125

men's unisex 1984 rugby shirt in colorblock - men's short sleeve tees

J.Crew $59.50

Rowing Blazers $185

Barbarian $80

Columbia knit RugbyColumbia Knit $68.75

oxford cloth button down
Jerrod Swanton is a simple man interested in simple, classic, and traditional style.

9 Comments on "The Rugby Rush"

  1. Been wearing them for close to 40 years now. The perfect casual shirt for cooler days and seasons. They look good with khakis (long or short) and jeans. To their detractors, I would say, at least they have a collar and are free of skulls, camouflage, barbed wire, Harley-Davidson, or similar motifs. Mercifully.

    Best Regards,


  2. mhj says:

    What’s the consense for older gentlemen (say 60 yr. olds) wearing rugbys?

  3. Robert says:

    Really like the pictured shirt from Rowing Blazers. More so than others I see in the online style world, the looks you put together are “real.” The clothes are worn and lived in as opposed to looking as if they came right off the rack. Excellent!

  4. Andrew says:

    I say yes in a casual setting, with friends, watching the big game, at an informal family BBQ etc.
    I think on an older gentleman it is a good natured, casual, sporting, approachable look.

  5. Grey Flannels says:

    mhj: For older gentlemen, they’re fine at home.

  6. Jon DiBenedetto says:

    Looks good!

  7. Bag Of Coins says:

    I’ve found that rugby shirts layered over a button-down collar shirt (with chinos or decent jeans) work great at sporting events & company picnics & similar casual events and I’ve gotten compliments and postive comparisons from wearing it. I think it works like a more trad & put-together version of wearing your favorite team’s sports jersey. I suspect that some color combinations are too “youthful” or “juvenile” for someone at my age to pull off (approaching mid-forties), so I got mine with navy & grey stripes (two actually). Also hides stains well. It seems that navy paired with any dark, non-contrasting color (burgundy, forest green, etc.) would work well for anybody over the age of 30, and I don’t see why it wouldn’t work for someone in their 60s if it was used as an overshirt on an OCBD.

  8. J Edwin says:

    Columbia Knits provides a great rugby and other shirts. They run large, which is rare. Look into their practice rugby where, at a discount, you can get shirts made from the leftovers in varying color combinations. I bought a rugby in my school colors for my *gulp* 30th h.s. reunion in Portland, Oregon, USA where the rugbies are made locally.

    J E
    Portland, Oregon, USA

  9. Jesse says:

    Spotted: ivy style belt !!!

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