No thanks. I actually LIKE the flap. Now I’ve got the results of a sartorial boondoggle or two in my closet and my fuzzy diceyness is certainly no secret so a chest pocket flap on my Polo Coat?-bring it on. It’s just the kind of extraneous accoutrement that I like. Functional? Not so much. I can’t see me engaging in rigorous antics that would cause the contents of said chest pocket to jostle out. So it’s kind of like one’s appendix (bad metaphor-bad metaphor) I suppose. You don’t HAVE to have it.
Sunday, February 7, 2010
The Polo Coat-Camel Hair and The Flap Flap
Here’s a bit from a great article on the Polo Coat from Ivy Style and Town and Country….
“The camel hair coat has changed its style a bit over the years, yet remains a classic of the genre. Brooks Brothers has been stocking them forever or at least since the early years of the 20th century, and Ralph Lauren’s version with flapped chest pocket is an authentic copy of one worn by the Duke of Windsor himself.
By 1930, the polo coat outnumbered the raccoon at the Yale-Princeton football game, which was as sure a sartorial barometer as could be found!”
Bruce Boyer-Town and Country July, 1981 Issue
Now the visual proof of the Duke wearing said coat with pocket flap-only is negated because his lapels were so darned wide.
I can’t remember appreciating the functionality of my clothing purchases to any greater degree than I’m enjoying this coat. Camel hair-to quote LFG once again, is “cuddly” and I now have three versions of it.
No wonder that the camel hair Polo Coat and its hybrid kin are seen routinely in photos of gentleman in various forms of recreation and leisurely pursuits. It’s intriguing to see the elegant dichotomy and obtuseness manifest in a tennis-golf-polo-turf participant or spectator donning said coat over their activity specific apparel. For lack of a better characterization-cool.
Walter Hagen donned the Camel Polo before stepping up for a trophy and a check. I've already blogged about Hagen's contribution to elevating the income of and respect for pro golfers.
Hagen with that other guy who was known for nice togs.
Polo Coat apres Tennis
And it seems that 19th century Jockeys found overcoats to be quite comforting between rides. I love this windowpane contrivance swathing Mornington Cannon.
Vince Lombardi avec the Camel Polo. "Now Bart...."
I loved Green Bay when I was a little kid. Why? Who else were you going to root for when you live in South Carolina? I liked their helmet-it has my last initial on it. I got a Bart Starr uniform and helmet for Christmas one year. M.W. got a Miami Dolphins outfit-you could order any team you wanted from the Sears catalogue. I remember breaking my leg a couple of days later while kitted out in my Green Bay rig. My football career ended early-real early.
If the Polo Coat was good enough for The Babe then it's good enough for me.
You can find the coat on cigar smoking automotive entrepreneurs in Delaware.
And a ton of Polo Coat and other overcoat inspiration from Apparel Arts.
I publish almost all of the comments that roll in regarding my posts-with the exception of the xenophobic white separatist that commented the other day. Most of the digs at me are justified and therefore accepted and posted in the spirit intended. Including the one regarding the chest pocket flap on my half price Polo-Ralph “Polo Coat”…..
Think about having Flusser's tailors remove that flap over the breast pocket.
(I think it's why it was left over for reductions.
There are many a sartorial blogger with greater erudition in these matters than me so my research interests regarding the “flap” have petered out. What I did find in my snooping about was a plethora of examples reflecting that said flap has been an option on various types of overcoats for years. Gentry Magazine from the early 1950's was brimming with the "Flap". So there.
Chest Flap Hacking Flaps and Ticket Flap....Flappin' Ones Ass Off. Even I might posit that this one is suffering from Over Flap.
Now the Prince isn't flapping in this photo but his mate to the left is. Where's his boy Fruity Metcalf? Damn I love those British nicknames. "Fruity"...gotta love it. Especially when a guy like me comes from the land of nicknames more centric to "Bubba and Stinky". Binkie Beaumont is another zinger that comes to mind.
Looks to me like a demi-flap. Crescent demi-flap? Sounds like a damned Starbucks order. Shut the Flap Up.
So I can't tell you anything about the Flap-other than I like it. What I can do is leave you with a few other coats that are worthy of recognition.
Merkin's Tony Biddle inspired coat.
The Sartorial God only knows what this is. The onliest thing I can say is that it's stronger than nine rows of Spring Onions. Stop the damn bus and let me off. I gotta have one.
What is this cloth? Cashmere Terry? I think Cashmere Terry danced in the Hootchie Cootchie Show at the Fairgrounds with Aunt Tootie come to think of it.
Vanity Fair caricatures probably offer as rich a repository for Coat Inspiration as on cold hope to find. Some with Flaps. Some without.
Robert Falcon Scott
Some Turf Plonker
And finally, J.A.M. Whistler