• Brunch With Lilly Pulitzer


    It's no secret I flew down to Palm Beach last weekend for Lilly Pulitzer's birthday brunch (follow me on Twitter to keep up). The white tent affair was buzzing with lovely ladies in iconic pastel Lillys, Palm Beach gossip, and jazz music.  Kiel, Vickers, and I are seated at the table next to Lilly.  She is still exquisite at 80.  We meet, we pose for an onslaught of photos for the likes of Town & Country, we make small talk. She is as lovely as you have probably fantasized.  Though she hasn't helmed the eponymous brand since 1984, Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau remains the Palm Beach darling the brand was built upon.

    After a spirited version of Happy Birthday (led by none other than Kiel), we're treated to a collection of rare and vintage Lillys at the Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History—a collection made in part by some of Mary Lane's own shifts (official Lilly ambassador and owner of the largest known collection of Lillys).  During the line's heyday, Pulitzer subtly placed her first name in many of her prints in order to establish authenticity amongst other designers following in her wake.  Look closely at the vintage prints below to see how sly "Lilly" was worked into her iconic designs. How many can you spot?

    Photographed in Boynton Beach, FL

    Nov 14, 2011 | Permalink (14) View/Leave Comments

    Austen left a comment on 11/30/2011 at 4:25 PM:

    this site is divine.

    emjkmj left a comment on 11/16/2011 at 8:06 AM:

    @AEV, You had to receive an invitation.  It was $75 per person and $750 for a table.  It was a charity/fund raising event for The Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion in Boynton Beach.  If I knew you were going FEC, I would have dropped in.

    Nicki left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 8:36 PM:

    It is my understanding that her name is still found hidden in all of the prints, to this day.

    Carly left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 7:33 PM:

    You’re amazing.

    Tripp left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 4:09 PM:

    i am so jealous. i would kill to go to a society event honoring Lilly Pulitzer

    BAH left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 3:53 PM:

    That blue print in the first column, seventh row is from my vintage bathrobe that is in the exhibit. Wish I could have made it to the event on Saturday - I’ve met Lilly twice now because of the exhibit and she is an absolute doll!

    JRenee left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 2:38 PM:

    Love the copy! Any woman would be delighted to be called ‘exquisite.’ Looking forward to seeing more images from the event!

    Jennifer (SLPreppy) left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 2:24 PM:

    It was fabulous seeing and meeting you at the event, though I understand you missed Lindsey over a silly flat tire.  Glad you enjoyed your weekend in our lovely Palm Beaches.  Great collage of vintage Lilly.

    Shawn left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 1:39 PM:

    I haven’t looked into it recently, but you used to be able to buy yards of fabric directly from Lilly and take it to a tailor to make pants.  I personally hope you can, because the cut of their pants are way too wide.

    AEV left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 12:59 PM:

    Great fabrics. How do you know the Pulitzers?

    Barbara left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 10:25 AM:

    Thanks so much for coming and helping to make Lilly’s day. I know she loved meeting you and seeing the next generation of style setters. Great collage of prints!

    Laguna Beach Fogey left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 9:34 AM:

    Classic! Love those prints.

    I too miss the Lilly Pulitzer men’s “stuff”, but I suspect LP designs are too “fruity” for today’s sensitive, insecure male.

    There was an LP event here in OC recenty, which sadly I couldn’t attend.

    Susan Partain Turner left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 8:26 AM:

    I love the collage of vintage and current fabrics,,,well done

    nl left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 2:48 AM:

    what ever happened to lilly’s men’s line? it’s been severely lacking in recent seasons!


  • One Kings Lane Social Primer Tastemaker Sale


    Friend and well-mannered Episcopalian, K. Cooper Ray, teamed up with One Kings Lane to host his very own Tastemaker Sale. After trips to John Pope Antiques and Julia Santen Gallery on King Street in Charleston, Ray presents a top drawer curation of antiques, furniture, vintage posters, pheasant taxidermy, and more. My favorite piece is the taxidermy white tundra swan or the prep striped library chair—I can’t decide. Act fast though, you only have three days to take home your own piece of South Carolina.

    “I approached the tastemaker sale as if I were decorating my house, albeit a dream house with many great and big rooms, high ceilings, 18th Century crown moldings and heart-pine wood floors. It was a great excuse to hit some of my favorite shops in Charleston and pick out all the things I always wanted but could never afford and offer those finds up to the regular readers of Social Primer.”

    —K. Cooper Ray

    Nov 11, 2011 | Permalink (1) View/Leave Comments

    Desmond K left a comment on 11/11/2011 at 8:25 AM:

    I recently met him at a polo match last week. He snapped a few pics of me and my family. He’s a really cool guy. Based on the Twitter feeds they had a rocking good time at the event last night.


  • J.Hilburn

    Style | Dress Code  

    Once you go custom, you will wonder how you ever settled for off-the-rack clothing. Bespoke shirting can be expensive (my Ascot Chang shirt was upwards of $300) but it doesn't always have to be.  The gentlemen behind J.Hilburn offer custom shirting, not out of the confines of a  brick and mortar shop, but from a stable of style advisors who meet you in your home or office.

    Admittedly, the custom shirting process can be overwhelming given the myriad of options at your fingertips. Fit, fabrics, collars, cuffs, pockets—the list goes on; however, J.Hilburn simplifies this in a very smart way. For example, they refined what is traditionally a conversation about how you like your shirt to fit on your body with an illustrative diagram of four precise fits ranging from "traditional" to "European" (slim but not skinny). Custom shirting is no longer solely for the guy who knows exactly what he wants but for the guy who has an idea of what he likes.

    J.Hilburn custom dress shirt with repp tie by The Windmill Club

    While J.Hilburn has built their reputation on offering a great value, they aren't cutting any corners.  The (indestructible) buttons feel really good in between your fingers. It's the first thing you notice while buttoning up.  Shirt bags and metal collar stays are also included.  After being measured, I opted for a pale pink oxford fabric (Monti) in a European fit with a spread collar, side pleats, barrel cuffs, and my monogram (left side at the bottom of my rib cage)*...all for around $120.  At that price, you may never want to go back to off-the-rack.

    *courtesy of J.Hilburn

    Nov 10, 2011 | Permalink (26) View/Leave Comments

    Bri Euton left a comment on 12/19/2011 at 1:07 PM:

    Boulder/Denver, Colorado guys-shoot me an email bri.euton@jhilburnpartner.com or give me a call at 720-443-2383

    Susan Klapkin left a comment on 11/20/2011 at 8:41 PM:

    Anyone in Central New Jersey or manhattan- please contact me for your person J. Hilburn appointment

    Chris Anderson left a comment on 11/18/2011 at 6:49 PM:

    I love this New England style.

    I do.

    Jennifer left a comment on 11/18/2011 at 3:39 PM:

    Any Boston gentleman interested in looking at the J.Hilburn line can check out my personal site jennifercasner.jhilburn.com

    Hilton left a comment on 11/18/2011 at 11:46 AM:

    This is a great shot of you, Mr. Castleberry. (You appear to be more sophisticated and manly.)

    Michael left a comment on 11/15/2011 at 11:52 PM:

    Same pose without the sport coat would have synced better with a piece about the shirt you are wearing.  True?

    Al left a comment on 11/14/2011 at 6:46 PM:

    Woah…I have that exact same jacket.

    c^left left a comment on 11/14/2011 at 10:43 AM:

    Although initially dismissed by scanning eyes as another tweed jacket, the subtle plaid pattern gestured at by the blue trousers is exquisite.

    Susan Kantor left a comment on 11/12/2011 at 8:27 AM:

    CTBAKER or other Fairfield County CT guys, I would be happy to show you the J. Hilburn line.  Check out my website at http://susankantor.jhilburn.com.

    cam left a comment on 11/12/2011 at 1:10 AM:

    Socks no? It is November after all….

    Laguna Beach Fogey left a comment on 11/12/2011 at 12:16 AM:

    Wonderful. Hilarious photo!

    I wonder what song you were jiving to…

    I’m thinking Elvis.

    Or, are those jazz hands?

    Please advise. ;-)

    Andi left a comment on 11/11/2011 at 3:46 PM:

    You kind of look like Cosmo Kramer in that picture (in a good way).

    BTW, I usually have my shirts made at CottonWork, and I nothing but good things to say about those guys.

    kelly johnson left a comment on 11/11/2011 at 2:07 PM:

    Hey L.A. area guys!
    Click here

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 11/11/2011 at 12:52 PM:

    @ML—My moleskin jeans are Ralph Lauren and my sportcoat is J.Press.

    @logicsalmon—From the photo, it looks like I’m very happy with the fit. I described the options I chose within the copy above. Because the shirt is custom, showing you all the little details of mine isn’t extreme relevant because your shirt will inherently be different.

    @ctbaker—When you visit the website you can request a style advisor contact you I’m order to establish the relationship and measure you up.

    ML left a comment on 11/11/2011 at 12:14 PM:

    Great jacket and pants, makers?

    RBC left a comment on 11/11/2011 at 10:20 AM:

    Something worth noting is that an individual pattern is cut for each shirt just like at bespoke shirting outfits Charvet or T&A (both of which cost a TON more than J.Hilburn).

    logicsalmon left a comment on 11/11/2011 at 2:55 AM:

    Really intriguing.  Although the website has some great swatches of the fabrics, would you mind maybe showing us how it fits and what options you decided to get?  I do trust your word, but it would be nice to see the shirt itself.


    Joey Dee left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 11:18 PM:

    I must agree, this photo of you has a great energy!

    AEV left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 10:49 PM:

    For the money, my J. Hilburn shirts are the nicest I own. If you live in/around DC, and want to get in touch with a great local sales/fitting rep, let me know - I’d be happy to share her contact information…

    ctbaker left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 10:11 PM:

    if J. Hilburn doesn’t have stores how do I get one?

    emjkmj left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 9:46 PM:

    @FEC- Don’t get me wrong, this is one of your best portraits.  A few detailed pics of the shirt, would have served well.

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 9:36 PM:

    @emjkmj—There are plenty of detailed fabric swatches available for viewing on the J.Hilburn website.

    @gotleib—My cordovan tassel loafers are Ralph Lauren (Crockett & Jones).

    emjkmj left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 9:16 PM:

    Maybe next time you will show the shirt…

    gotleib left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 8:26 PM:

    Will definitely have to try one of those shirts! What’s the brand/model on the shoes?

    Richard Ross left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 8:21 PM:

    Hey, nice jeans.

    K. Cooper Ray left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 8:16 PM:

    J. Hilburn is amazing. And that is quite the dapper photo, Mr. Castelberry.


  • Ernest Alexander Weekend Bag


    Trains, planes, and automobiles are a permanent fixture in how we live, work, and play. Whether it's a weekend getaway or a week long vacation, an overnight bag is a necessity (and reduces checked bag fees). My weekend bag by Ernest Alexander has proven a top drawer travel companion over the past year. Made from black watch wax canvas with soft vegetable tanned leather handles and warm brass hardware, its wax finish sheds water while developing a unique patina over time. I pack it for my Northeast stints (in lieu of my leather duffle) at even the slightest chance of rain.

    Bedford Black Watch Wax Overnight Bag, $395.00

    Ernest Alexander designs and makes their bags in New York's Garment District. "We craft each of our pieces from the finest materials and pay specific attention to the small details, from our signature wax cottons, to contrasting linings, double stitching, zipper pulls and extra pocketing."

    Nov 9, 2011 | Permalink (10) View/Leave Comments

    Charlotte Wilder left a comment on 11/14/2011 at 2:17 PM:

    Wow, such a beautiful bag. Love the size and the plaid, they somehow are perfect for each other!

    check out my blog (i’ve got some menswear stuff up) at www.thewilderthings.com

    David left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 5:30 PM:

    Good looking bag, reminds me a lot of the old Ralph Lauren black watch duffle I use for travel.

    Joey Dee left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 3:31 PM:

    Personally, I still have issues grasping the conept of bags; but I beliee this is one that I can pull off. Nice nod to rules for my unborn son?

    AEV left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 12:50 PM:

    @FEC - Thanks. I didn’t expect anything different than that.

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 12:21 PM:

    @AEV—I paid for my bag.  Any product featured on Unabashedly Prep is pulled from my closet.  My closet only contains pieces I love and personally endorse.  Whether or not they are gifts or purchased are irrelevant to my endorsement of the products in question.

    Snaaby left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 12:03 PM:

    Black Watch is my all-time favorite plaid. Just added this to my Christmas list. Nice pick-up.

    GAH left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 9:57 AM:

    Love the blog, FEC.

    AEV left a comment on 11/10/2011 at 9:25 AM:

    Fred - Was this bag “gifted” to you by the retailer? Such information helps readers intepret your praise….regardless, $400 strikes me as needlessly steep for a cotton/canvas bag.

    emjkmj left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 11:14 PM:

    I like your black watch patterned bag.  Though, it’s really hard to beat the Filson duffles.  Made in the USA, and more importantly guaranteed for life with no questions asked.  As you know, duffles start to breakdown over the years as the stress points take their toll.  Having the ability to send it back in ten years for a brand new one is hard to beat.

    ERIII left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 10:04 PM:

    Nice! Great bag!


  • Rock the Tote

    Dress Code  

    Photographed In New York, NY

    Noteworthy: Ernest Alexander wax utility tote, painted Bass Weejuns, Gant Rugger three-piece tweed suit.

    Nov 8, 2011 | Permalink (23) View/Leave Comments

    Sal Valentine left a comment on 12/18/2011 at 7:54 PM:

    I don’t understand some of the tut-tutting and naysaying going on. Dude looks great - if you can, why not?
    Tweed suit > my everything.

    Stephen left a comment on 11/11/2011 at 11:15 PM:

    I’d also like to know about the shoes. I’ve seen the duct tape on the Topsiders and even red and green tape on Topsiders, but this is something very precise, apparently painted on leather shoes. That’s a committment!

    emjkmj left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 11:34 PM:

    I just noticed this guy tonight on the Sartorialist.com, posted Nov, 9th.  Same shirt and bag… Must be the same guy.  Does he wander the streets looking for fashion bloggers?

    WH left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 11:28 PM:

    Nice shot, creative composition.

    chris left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 5:41 PM:

    @ bucephalus Good point. It’s for that reason we’ve   left the last button hole on the cuff “uncut”. Voila, no more frowning needed.

    Dylan-Thomas Childs left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 3:28 PM:

    Don’t rock the tote baby!

    McBindle left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 2:13 PM:

    The colors work on this ensemble while the fabric of the suit is very nice.

    GChild left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 1:15 PM:

    The nicest things about this look (aside from the photo composition) are the tote and the specs.

    @NWR is right. Retail world, not real world.

    bucephalus left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 11:52 AM:

    Surgeon’s cuffs on off-the-rack jackets, like the one in the photo, is something I frown upon.  If you need to shorten the sleeves, it has to be done from the shoulders—an expensive and tricky proposition.  That’s if it can be done at all, because sometimes it can’t be done.

    bucephalus left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 11:44 AM:

    This character must be pretty tall, because Michael Bastian jackets aren’t terribly short and have a relatively low stance.

    George left a comment on 11/9/2011 at 3:19 AM:

    We here in CA didn’t get the Big Apple memo on painting shoes. We’re mostly “in with the in-crowd” as the song goes, but this one got by us. We’re eager to understand, though, and are listening hard to your tuition. Please indulge us…?

    OldGeorgetowner left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 10:09 PM:

    Loving the cut of the whole suit.
    Love the length of the pant, the fit..and on and on. Your model looks fantastic.

    khordkutta left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 4:39 PM:

    How tall is this gent?

    Tad Allagash left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 3:39 PM:

    That suit looks great.

    AEV left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 12:34 PM:

    Fred - does this guy work for Gant/Bastian? What’s your opinion on the appropriateness of casual/painted loafers with formal (albeit hyper trendy) suiting?

    NWR left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 12:25 PM:

    Great look for the retail world; I’m not sure about the real world.

    James left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 12:20 PM:

    The look is great. I dig most everything about it. Most everything…I don’t claim to polish my loafers on a regular basis, but if I had green paint on them, I may have to go buy another pair. Kudos on the rest of the look.

    Brian E left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 11:40 AM:

    The outfit is great.  Colors and textures all work well together.  I like the subtle touches like the contrast boutonniere and surgeon cuff button holes. I like the tote too.  I just can’t wrap my head around the fit.  I know the schoolboy look is “in,” but it takes away any air of maturity or seriousness the wearer might have.  That may be a good thing for all I know and probably works in the fashion world, just not for me.

    dam left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 11:24 AM:

    What a look!

    Laguna Beach Fogey left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 10:52 AM:

    “A Young Fogey in New York”

    Effing awesome!!

    AEV left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 10:31 AM:

    This leaves me speechless too.

    Paul left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 9:43 AM:

    And so I have to ask….the painted weejuns?

    Harry left a comment on 11/8/2011 at 9:28 AM:

    This leaves me speechless… too impeccable…


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