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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just saw part I of American Experience's biography on Bush I. Like all their programs in the Presidents series, it was an in-depth & non-partisan program. One thing I did notice: from about the 70's through the fall of the Berlin Wall I only saw him wearing an identifiably 3b sack once. The suits were most definitely natural shouldered, and overall the suit-shirt-tie combos were predictably traditional (with a few exceptions in the 70's). But for a guy who is usually held-up as our last truly trad president, Mr. Old Money New England WASP himself, I was a bit surprised. Nixon, apparently, was a more diehard sack wearer...
 

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I suspect normal people with jobs didn't agonize over whether a jacket was a sack or not the way some of us in the Trad Forum do.

GHWB probably had a tailor he preferred, had him show some fabrics that might be appropriate. After choosing one, GHWB would probably be asked, two buttons or three, and depending on the state of his suit closet, choose one or the other to ensure some balance and options to choose from when he'd gets dressed. The silhouette of the suit would not be markedly different between a 2 or 3 button coat. The natural shoulder is de rigeur for someone from his background and was a given; only cads and ponces would wear padded shoulders.
 

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I suspect normal people with jobs didn't agonize over whether a jacket was a sack or not the way some of us in the Trad Forum do.

GHWB probably had a tailor he preferred, had him show some fabrics that might be appropriate. After choosing one, GHWB would probably be asked, two buttons or three, and depending on the state of his suit closet, choose one or the other to ensure some balance and options to choose from when he'd gets dressed. The silhouette of the suit would not be markedly different between a 2 or 3 button coat. The natural shoulder is de rigeur for someone from his background and was a given; only cads and ponces would wear padded shoulders.
The story goes that GHWB, on the 1980 primary trail, was accused of being a stuffy "Brooks Brothers" type of guy...whereupon he opened his jacket to reveal upon the inside pocket...a J.Press label. The Washington DC Press store had the news clipping framed and prominently displayed when I last visited in 2006.

Enjoy the week.:icon_smile:

hbs
 

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Yea I still think he's trad. I don't think too many people out side of these fora obsess over an un-darted 3/2 roll. The shoulders are another matter - I can see a normal guy having preference there. I've heard that his handlers tried to get him to tone-down the old money look also, which is why he largely stopped wearing button-down collars.

FWIW, as per Zot!'s comment above, Nixon had some suits made at English American Clothiers outside of Baltimore. I've seen pictures on the walls of the tailoring shop there.
 

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The story goes that GHWB, on the 1980 primary trail, was accused of being a stuffy "Brooks Brothers" type of guy...whereupon he opened his jacket to reveal upon the inside pocket...a J.Press label. The Washington DC Press store had the news clipping framed and prominently displayed when I last visited in 2006.

Enjoy the week.:icon_smile:

hbs
The framed clipping is still there.

Bush 41 also appears to patronize Sam's Tailor in Hong Kong. Scroll down to the last item here and see the pic in the upper righthand corner:

https://www.samstailor.biz/news/
 

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Just saw part I of American Experience's biography on Bush I. Like all their programs in the Presidents series, it was an in-depth & non-partisan program. One thing I did notice: from about the 70's through the fall of the Berlin Wall I only saw him wearing an identifiably 3b sack once. The suits were most definitely natural shouldered, and overall the suit-shirt-tie combos were predictably traditional (with a few exceptions in the 70's). But for a guy who is usually held-up as our last truly trad president, Mr. Old Money New England WASP himself, I was a bit surprised. Nixon, apparently, was a more diehard sack wearer...
I have a biography of Mr. George that says he wore J Press and Brooks, but when he ran for president in 1980 his advisors told him to ditch the OCBDs and sacks and go with more conventional looks so as not to look too east coasty.

It also went on to say that once he was VP he would wear his old clothes when he knew he wasn't going to be on display, and put on the new stuff when it was show time.

Apparently he would have the SS take him to Brooks in DC when they were having their annual sales.

No lie.

It also said W. prefers to wear sansabelts with a polo shirt tucked in. I think daddy got most of the sartorial taste.

BTW, that was an excellent documentary.
 

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Leading up to the 1980 Presidential Campaign, GHWB was advised to dress less like a patrician and more like a middle market business executive. As a result he began to frequent a noted DC clothier that was popular with those on Capital Hill. The clothier has since closed and the name escapes me at the moment. Now for some irony: Leading up to the 1992 Presidential campaign, Bill Clinton was advised to dress in a more Presidential manor. His advisors directed him to the same DC clothier that GHWB frequented.

Best,

Ross
 

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I have a biography of Mr. George that says he wore J Press and Brooks, but when he ran for president in 1980 his advisors told him to ditch the OCBDs and sacks and go with more conventional looks so as not to look too east coasty.
Yep, IIRC he always wore plain-point (never buttondown) collars and steel-rimmed (never horn-rimmed) glasses, in order to avoid giving off any sartorial signals that might be read as confirming Bob Dole's notorious putdown of GHWB as "a preppie, a Yalie, and a sissy."

I'm not saying Dole's dig was at all fair, but it did, in the eyes of GHWB and his advisors, gesture at some things about his background that were considered potentially problematic.

Politicians in general are risk averse when it comes to clothing. That's why so few will wear anything that might provoke notice, such as a contrast-collar shirt or a pocket square. Willie Brown is an exception to this rule. I'm sure there are others (maybe the late John Tower) but they are not typical.
 

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I wonder if the DC clothing store was Raleigh's?
That sounds right; Britches of Georgetowne (note the "e" on the end) was another big DC chain at the time, but it went in for a slicker, somewhat more fashion-forward look, geared toward younger men: If Raleigh's was gunboat wingtips, Britches was Italian loafers. Raleigh's dressed a lot of bureaucrats and congressmen; Britches probably dressed more lobbyists.

I well recall the Britches salesmen, who often hung around the stores in shirtsleeves wearing braces, wide and ornate Robert Talbott or Ferrell Reed ties hanging well below the waistbands of their full pleated trousers, and slicked-back hair. The store valued nattiness in its staff and I found customer service to be generally quite good, as long as you didn't let them smother you in their eagerness to sell, sell, sell.

I maintain a number of items from both stores in my wardrobe to this day.
 

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Arthur Adler Was a Also Favorite Clothier to GHWB

I believe the other DC area clothier GHW Bush frequented was Arthur Adler. I recall a few articles in the Washington area papers confirming this fact. I believe this firm ceased operations several years ago.

Also, Vice-President Elect Biden has been known to wear white collar and blue bodied shirts frequently. However, the vast majority elected and career government officials in the DC area eschew such garments because of adverse public perception of them as been pretenious or haughty.
 

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I believe the other DC area clothier GHW Bush frequented was Arthur Adler. I recall a few articles in the Washington area papers confirming this fact. I believe this firm ceased operations several years ago.

Also, Vice-President Elect Biden has been known to wear white collar and blue bodied shirts frequently. However, the vast majority elected and career government officials in the DC area eschew such garments because of adverse public perception of them as been pretenious or haughty.
Adler had a shop above the Red Line's Farragut North exit at Connecticut & L downtown, and one in Chevy Chase on the western side of Wisconsin, north of Brooks. The downtown store went first, and the C.C. store followed. That was back in the early 90s IIRC. It seemed at the time that it was the arrival of Nordies in the Metro area which crushed the small, old-line men's shops out of existence--at least I recall someone in retail telling me that. I still have a pair of Aldens and some Venanzi ties I got at the Farragut North Adler's.

Do you have any pics of Biden sporting the contrast collar? I can well believe he would go in for that, but have never seen him wearing one. He's the type of politician who will tend to show more sartorial flair--the kind with a very safe seat.
 

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Do you have any pics of Biden sporting the contrast collar? I can well believe he would go in for that, but have never seen him wearing one. He's the type of politician who will tend to show more sartorial flair--the kind with a very safe seat.
Is a contrast collar really considered risky? I wouldn't think twice if I saw it. It seems like a classic thing that pols or lawyers or whatever wear.
 

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As a result he began to frequent a noted DC clothier that was popular with those on Capital Hill. The clothier has since closed and the name escapes me at the moment. Now for some irony: Leading up to the 1992 Presidential campaign, Bill Clinton was advised to dress in a more Presidential manor. His advisors directed him to the same DC clothier that GHWB frequented.

Best,

Ross
I think you're referring to Arthur Adler.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I have a biography of Mr. George that says he wore J Press and Brooks, but when he ran for president in 1980 his advisors told him to ditch the OCBDs and sacks and go with more conventional looks so as not to look too east coasty.

It also went on to say that once he was VP he would wear his old clothes when he knew he wasn't going to be on display, and put on the new stuff when it was show time.
I guess it's worth noting here how far we've come- would the public today even notice anything other than "another politician in a suit," any suit? [I guess we could except Willie Brown, as mentioned earlier.]

Apparently he would have the SS take him to Brooks in DC when they were having their annual sales.
Don't ever let anybody tell you that being President is without its advantages.
 

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Speaking of father and son Bush, did we all see the ex-Presidential photo op today? 41 and 43 were wearing practically the same navy blue Churchill dot tie.

JB
 

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Is a contrast collar really considered risky? I wouldn't think twice if I saw it. It seems like a classic thing that pols or lawyers or whatever wear.
One of Bush 41's advisors, I think it was the late Richard Darman, used to call them "elitist collars." Darman was rich (married an heiress, I think) but used to make a show of cutting his own hair and such.

In some communities, wearing a contrast-collar shirt would be considered dudish, affected, putting on airs, or at best perilously close to one or more of the foregoing, so it's the kind of thing a pol would tend to avoid.

For those of us in private life, it's not so big a deal. I wear them sometimes, and no one comments either way.
 
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