• The Official Preppy Handbook

    Music & Books  

    There were whispers of a limited gift edition of Lisa Birnbach's original preppy bible. Part satire, part reference guide, The Official Preppy Handbook, when published in 1980 became an instant cult classic. Given the book was published over 30 years ago, I have never actually seen a hardback copy (the few hardback gift editions went quickly). The secondary market proved not much better. After watching eBay for a couple of years for kicks, only a handful of hardback copies popped up cuffed with asking prices of $200+...until last month. Indian madras print slipcover, a linen hardback cover, and a fill-in-chart family tree make up this “completely outstanding gift edition.” While the demand has cooled in the wake of True Prep, landing a copy (for $50, no less) still made for a fun story over drinks with Birnbach last week.

    May 22, 2013 | Permalink (9) View/Leave Comments

    Derek left a comment on 9/28/2013 at 1:47 PM:

    Still have my ratty old paperback version of the original. Have to say, I thought True Prep was very, very disappointing.  She omitted/ignored pretty much any reference to southern prepdom (a healthy part of the first book).  I think it should have included color photos, seeing how it was an update from 30 years ago. The first book was over-the-top WASP-y, the second a little too self-consciously PC.  I shelved it pretty quickly.

    On another note, I used to have a Ralph Lauren windbreaker/Baracuta jacket with the exact same madras pattern as the book cover…which I sadly can’t fit into anymore.  Been looking for a replacement for years.  SO hard to find good madras these days.

    Angela left a comment on 6/11/2013 at 2:50 PM:

    I got my hardcover copy at Amazon (sans dust jacket).  I don’t remember exactly how much I paid for it, but it was reasonable, and it’s in good shape.  Now I can mark up my ratty paperback copy. :)

    Cedric left a comment on 6/9/2013 at 10:00 PM:

    Pretty content with my paperback copy aswell, though I do wish I had a hardcover. haha, good stuff FEC!

    Casey left a comment on 6/5/2013 at 3:32 PM:

    I’m happy with my paperback copies but, oh, how I would love that family tree to give to my husband as a gag gift.

    Thomas left a comment on 6/4/2013 at 10:35 AM:

    I picked up a hardback gift edition with the madras sleeve on ebay a couple years ago for around $20. It is in excellent condition but no gift sticker on the outside sleeve. Had no idea they were going for so much. Thanks

    BMOC left a comment on 6/4/2013 at 10:20 AM:

    Have one in better than mint condition. Never even been opened. In the gift box and everything. I am shocked to know what it is worth. Thankfully I probably have at least 3 other well-worn paperback versions around the house.

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 6/4/2013 at 6:58 AM:

    @PSP—This gift edition with slipcover isn’t available on Amazon. Not to mention none of the Amazon listings (which quickly escalate to $150+) have any pictures of the hardback copies for sale.

    PSP left a comment on 6/3/2013 at 6:56 PM:

    Try Amazon for $50 for this addition.  I like it much better than True Prep.  It was more optimistic.  FEC still interested in your advice for Nantucket on July 4th?

    Valerie left a comment on 6/3/2013 at 2:27 PM:

    Ten years ago, I bought mine from Ebay at $70 (which was too much). I can’t believe it’s up to $200 now. Yikes! Glad you scored on for $50.


  • Vampire Weekend Live at Roseland

    Music & Books  

    Nothing tops "being there" when Vampire Weekend took to the Roseland for their sold out hometown show in New York recently. A live filming of the show directed by Steve Buscemi comes in a close second though.

    May 13, 2013 | Permalink (1) View/Leave Comments

    Ace left a comment on 5/20/2013 at 4:11 PM:

    How annoying are people with their stupid phones stuck up in the air?  Just enjoy the show people!


  • Icons of Men’s Style

    Music & Books  

    Bill Blass said it was a matter of instinct.
    Richard Eberhart claimed it was the perfection of a point of view.
    But Edna Chase declared you can’t buy it.

    They were musing about style. And while style is what you have and not what you buy, it remains elusive to most men. This sartorial pandemic can partially be attributed to most men’s lack of style icons—individuals or characters (past and present) you are drawn to. Personal style starts there though...icons. Amanda Brooks sums it up perfectly when she observes, “Style does not come to you unless you pay attention to it.” It is something one develops through a constant looking process. That looking process will be in vain though if you’re closet is full of clothes your mom or ex-girlfriend picked out for you. Icons of Men’s Style can help you with that. The thorough encyclopedia examines the most important menswear staples (the duffle coat, the polo shirt, the penny loafer, the diving watch, etc), their provenance and history, the stories of their design, the brands that started it all, and how the iconic pieces shaped the way men dress today. Now you can know, and knowing is half the battle.

    May 6, 2013 | Permalink (0) View/Leave Comments

    Kick off the comments by using the stationery below to pen your thoughts.


  • May 2013 Playlist

    Music & Books  

    Listen on Spotify

    May 1, 2013 | Permalink (4) View/Leave Comments

    Orgastic Future left a comment on 5/4/2013 at 12:24 AM:

    Nothing like waking up in the morning to Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky!”

    valerie left a comment on 5/3/2013 at 11:46 AM:

    Thanks! I always enjoy your playlists.

    ari left a comment on 5/2/2013 at 10:38 PM:

    I always love these - I’ve found some of my favorite songs from your playlists!

    Davis left a comment on 5/2/2013 at 1:59 PM:

    Hummingbird // Local Natives. Excellent.


  • The Official Sloane Ranger Handbook

    Music & Books  

    When The Official Preppy Handbook hit the shelves in 1980, the east coast American sub culture had flourished long enough, and aroused enough curiosity, to commence poking fun at it. For those familiar, it was such a hit that is spawned a sequel of sorts some 30 years later. On the heels of the The Official Preppy Handbook's popularity, England turned out a handbook of their own in 1982, The Official Sloane Ranger Handbook. The approach feels familiar, riffing on its predecessor down to the title itself. While hard to find, I serendipitously came across a copy in New York while vintage shopping.

    What is a Sloane, you ask? The moniker refers to a stereotype in the UK of the young, upper class, or upper-middle-class who share distinctive and common lifestyle traits not all too different from American preppies. The exemplar female Sloane Ranger was considered to be Lady Diana Spencer before marrying The Prince of Wales. These fun illustrations (click them instead of pulling out your glasses) of the various Sloane uniforms from the book highlight the nuances of dressing the part. It’s all quite humorous...yet simultaneously quite serious.

    Apr 15, 2013 | Permalink (5) View/Leave Comments

    CavalierHealth left a comment on 4/20/2013 at 11:11 PM:

    Don’t forget the Sloane Rover!

    Kathleen left a comment on 4/20/2013 at 8:28 PM:

    Not so hard to find. Bought a copy on amazon for less than $10. Just had to wait forever (a month) for it to arrive from the uk.  It’s worth the wait.

    RWK left a comment on 4/20/2013 at 2:16 PM:

    And the ranger part came from a play on words, pairing it with sloane to sound like “The Lone Ranger.”

    TJT left a comment on 4/20/2013 at 7:03 AM:

    The “sloane” part comes from Sloane Square - A square bordering a number of the more affluent boroughs in London where one would typically find these sloane rangers.

    Ashley left a comment on 4/19/2013 at 4:09 PM:

    You might be interested in this book - an update of the Sloane Ranger culture which has changed greatly since the 80’s… http://www.pinkjulepabroad.com/2013/01/cooler-faster-more-expensive-return-of.html


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