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American style with a preppy twist

Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger are two of the world's leading lifestyle brands and are known for their American style, with a preppy twist. In this guide, we will explore the concept of preppy and have found two outfits from the above brands to inspire a preppy style.
American style with a preppy twist

What is preppy?

Preppy is a word that has flourished a lot in the fashion world over the last few seasons, but what does it actually mean and how do you dress preppy. Although the style may seem a little random, it is extremely well thought out and borrows from the world of classic, leisure and sport.

The term preppy comes from the American preparatory schools, which are similar to our high schools here at home. Some of these schools are private and exclusive, their purpose being to prepare young people for the elite universities, the so-called IVY schools, which include Harvard and Yale. These universities had school uniforms which were very traditional and this attire was called "Trad", this uniform became more casual over time as the universities were influenced by the sports played at the schools and this meant that a new term was born, namely "Ivy". Hence we have the preppy term which is a blend of these two styles, the style is based on traditions with a twist of casual.

American style with a preppy twist

What's the no go for your polo shirt?

We've teamed this outfit with a pair of classic jeans, that you can wear all year round. Add an army-colored polo shirt and off-white pique knit. Wear the knit over the polo and remember that the collar of the polo must not stand up, it's a huge no go. To go with this is a lightweight and practical transitional jacket, that is water resistant and windproof. Use it for those unstable days when you need to be outside when it's not too cold. All styles in this outfit are from Tommy Hilfiger.

American style with a preppy twist

A Preppy Bear

The second outfit is a mix of Polo Ralph Lauren and Barbour. The Barbour vest you can either wear as the outer layer or as a mid layer under your spring/summer jacket, an item that can hang in your wardrobe all year round, perfect for the Danish seasons. To go with it we've chosen a pair of chinos shorts, a short sleeve shirt and crewneck sweatshirt from Polo Ralph Lauren. The grey sweatshirt with the polo bear is an iconic symbol from Polo Ralph Lauren, the preppy bear was invented by Jerry Lauren (Ralph Lauren's brother), who chose to dress a Steiff teddy bear he received as a birthday present, in a preppy outfit. Then a tradition started where the brothers got a new Steiff bear every year in a Polo Ralph Lauren outfit. Steiff was commissioned to produce 200 preppy bears to be sold exclusively in Polo Ralph Lauren's flagship store on Madison Avenue. They sold out in a weekend and from there, the preppy clothing bear quickly became a trademark in its own right, for Polo Ralph Lauren.

American style with a preppy twist