Wednesday, March 21, 2012

An Oxford Education

As far as wardrobe staples are concerned, a classic button down oxford is as essential as it gets. Whether worn by a woman or a man, this versatile shirt can be paired with the most dressy and the most casual of ensembles. Perfect with jeans, trousers or even over a bathing suit after a day at the beach.

The oxford cloth button-down shirt originated as a sport shirt. At the turn of the last century, polo players in England wore formal long-sleeved shirts made of oxford cotton (hence the name "oxford"), a breathable and durable basket-weave cloth. The collars were made with buttons to prevent them from flapping during polo matches. Tennis players soon began using this same fabricThe first button down collars were introduced by Brooks Brothers and used exclusively for sports shirts until the 1950s when they became mainstream in America.

Polo at Meadowbrook, 1938
Tennis Players, 1910
     I'm pictured above in a well loved    
     oxford. My cousin snapped
     this photo during a walk through    
     Matunuck, a small beach community.


  1. I was out shopping for oxfords this evening, actually, and came home and saw this post : ) Do you ever wear boys' ones? I found the RL boys' ones are more comfy than the ladies' ones.

  2. Funny you should say that, because the one I'm wearing in the photo is actually an old boys RL oxford. It looks boxy on me in person, but you can't really tell by the picture. I'm not entirely sure how I acquired. I think it may have been my brother's to be honest. The boy's fit is definitely much more comfortable and roomy, and I prefer to wear it whenever i'm not going for a feminine, streamlined looked.