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[I'll try to dig up original clippings when I can], but this may be of interest.

from Richard D,. Carreno's "Established 1818: The Story of Brooks Bros." (1981):

When Brooks Brothers, in May, 1976, let it be known that its custom tailoring division would be phased out, The New York Times featured the accouncement and the reaction on Page 1. For the Times, it was a sign of the times.

Similarly, nearly 30 years earlier when Brooks Brothers launced its buttoned-down polo shirt in pink in 1949 -- the color was considered so daring, so inventive, even so scandalous -- Life turned over its cover to the shirt's debut. I was an area wherein colored shirts, especially the pink of the toff, were still indentified with bohemian rebellion. Yeah even, it was whispered with homosexuality.

Carreno has a foot-note concerning a scene from Knowles' novel of 1959:

[A scene in John Knowles' A Separae Peace, a chronical of private school life during World War II, depicts how shocking a pink-colored shirt was during that era.

Out of one of the drawers he lifted a finely woven braodcloth shirt, carefully cut, and very pink.

What's tha thing?
This is a tablecloth, he said out of the side of his mouth.
No, cut it out. What is it?
This, he answered with some pride, is going to be my emblem. Ma sent it up las week. Did you ever see stuff like this? It doesn't even button all the way down. You have to pull it over your head, like this.
Over your head. Pink! It makes you look like a _fairy.]
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