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RFK was also known to be a customer of the now-defunct Georgetown University Shop, founded in 1930 at 36th and O Streets, NW (later with a branch in Chevy Chase).

If you watch this 1985 Brad Davis miniseries, you'll see a sequence filmed inside the old GU Shop--RFK is trying on clothes while he and Ethel argue about something or other:

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0088594/

The shop, which was owned by the Smoot family (an old Southern Maryland clan) went OOB in the 90s along with several other old-line DC-area "main street" haberdashers, in part b/c Nordstrom had moved into the area in a big way, selling many of the same brands and crowding out the little guys. Only Wm. Fox & Co. soldiers on (and does so in style, I might add--it's a "must visit" for any sartorialist traveling to DC).
 

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I don't know where Robert Kennedy purchased his clothing during his student days, But Chipp made his clothing when he was Attorney General and Senator- I was there. How poignant it was when Robert brought in JFK's inauguration clothing and the chalk stripe suit that JFK was often pictured wearing to be re-cut for him.
Paul Winston
Winston Tailors
www.chipp2.com
 

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I do not want to contradict Mr. Winston, whose input here I really enjoy. I would like to hear more about the inauguration suit, and any other anecdotes about the Kennedys.

At the time of his assassination, RFK was wearing a Georgetown University Shop suit, and a shirt by K. Wragge (an old NYC clothier/shirtmaker?). RFK did not attend Georgetown (he was Harvard and UVA alum).

This is documented in the autopsy description, which I won't link since it is too sad/morbid.
 

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It doesn't contradict Mr. Winston at all to note that RFK was a GU Shop as well as a Chipp customer: How many people buy all their apparel from only one source?

I've seen that autopsy data; also, the GU Shop used to display on its wall a framed photo taken of RFK while he was in the store.
 

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My other favorite Kennedy trivia is that both JFK and RFK were said to travel everywhere with numerous fresh starched shirts. Before air conditioning, they needed a fresh shirt for each campaign stop.

There is a story about a reporter (maybe a young Ben Bradlee?) walking through the President's compartment of Air Force One and seeing JFK's large closet of shirts. RFK saw the reporter looking at the shirts and glared at him in order to send the message that he shouldn't write about the shirts. Someone may have the link to this.
 

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It doesn't contradict Mr. Winston at all to note that RFK was a GU Shop as well as a Chipp customer: How many people buy all their apparel from only one source?

I've seen that autopsy data; also, the GU Shop used to display on its wall a framed photo taken of RFK while he was in the store.
You are right. And the GU Shop did not actually make their clothes like Chipp, correct?
 

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You are right. And the GU Shop did not actually make their clothes like Chipp, correct?
They were a haberdashery/clothier, not a custom tailor. I'm sure they had MTM relationships w/ Oritsky of Reading, H. [not Hickey] Freeman then of Philadelphia, Southwick, Norman Hilton, and maybe Corbin, but they didn't do bespoke like Chipp.

As for JFK and his shirts, I've read that he used to change clothes quite a bit. While he was in the WH he followed a mid-day fitness regimen for his bad back that involved swimming in the heated WH pool (built for his own therapeutic purposes by FDR) and doing resistance exercises under the supervision of a Navy Corpsman trained as a physical therapist. After such a workout would surely be one logical time for JFK to change clothes. (This was a program pushed by one set of JFK's doctors; another faction that included the notorious Max "Dr. Feelgood" Jacobson gave the prez lots of drugs--check out Michael Dobbs's recent book on the Cuban Missile Crisis for more.)

I recall William Manchester writing that once JFK ribbed him for a) wearing allegedly stodgy buttondown collars [JFK favored a compact plain-point model, which was more fashion-forward at that time], and b) wearing the same shirt all day.
 

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I do not want to contradict Mr. Winston, whose input here I really enjoy. I would like to hear more about the inauguration suit, and any other anecdotes about the Kennedys.

At the time of his assassination, RFK was wearing a Georgetown University Shop suit, and a shirt by K. Wragge (an old NYC clothier/shirtmaker?). RFK did not attend Georgetown (he was Harvard and UVA alum).

This is documented in the autopsy description, which I won't link since it is too sad/morbid.
To my knowledge we never sold shirts to either JFK or RJK. JFK was squired in by his brother-in-law Peter Lawford. ( Lawford was an old Chipp customer- his Thin Man series credited Chipp for his wardrobe.) After JFK's election we would fit him at the White House and, when he was in NYC, at the Carlyle Hotel. ( I never went to the White House. When we went to the Carlyle I got to go.) We were never permitted to "promote" the fact that we were making JFK's clothing. We never took pictures fitting anyone. It was not and is not our style.
RFK came into the shop- even when he was Attorney General. Very unobtrusive. Compared to JFK he seemed shy. After one visit he left our shop during the 5:00 rush hour. I followed him out. I was curious what was going to happen as he and the secret service agent walked to his car which was parked around the corner infront of what is now Paul Stuart. They walked to the corner of 44th and Madison, waited for the light to change, crossed the street and walked to the car- a green Chevie. No one seemed to recognize him.
Paul Winston
Winston Tailors
www.chipp2.com
 

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RFK did not attend Georgetown
I just noticed this. Indeed, he did not, though some of his kids have, IIRC. In case anyone is wondering, the GU Shop was not part of the university or officially affiliated with it, and you certainly did not have to be a GU student or alum to shop there, even if quite a few of its customers were just that.
 

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To my knowledge we never sold shirts to either JFK or RJK. JFK was squired in by his brother-in-law Peter Lawford. ( Lawford was an old Chipp customer- his Thin Man series credited Chipp for his wardrobe.) After JFK's election we would fit him at the White House and, when he was in NYC, at the Carlyle Hotel. ( I never went to the White House. When we went to the Carlyle I got to go.) We were never permitted to "promote" the fact that we were making JFK's clothing. We never took pictures fitting anyone. It was not and is not our style.
RFK came into the shop- even when he was Attorney General. Very unobtrusive. Compared to JFK he seemed shy. After one visit he left our shop during the 5:00 rush hour. I followed him out. I was curious what was going to happen as he and the secret service agent walked to his car which was parked around the corner infront of what is now Paul Stuart. They walked to the corner of 44th and Madison, waited for the light to change, crossed the street and walked to the car- a green Chevie. No one seemed to recognize him.
Paul Winston
Winston Tailors
www.chipp2.com
Paul: A great anecdote. Richard
 
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