• Grace Pearson


    I love hearing from you ladies and gentlemen. Whether it's an impromptu introduction on the street, an encouraging comment, or in this particular case, a personal email...I appreciate it all. Cue Grace Pearson, pictured here in her favorite bespoke French navy suit. She wrote me to simply say "thank you." In a recent interview with the New Zealand Herald, Pearson rattles off style icons such as Jackie Kennedy, cites Unabashedly Prep as her principal style inspiration, and discloses that she makes her own bow ties. And if you can believe it gentlemen, it actually gets better.

    Photographed by Babiche Martens for New Zealand Herald

    The young kiwi works in a man's world—that of made-to-measure tailoring. Pearson is cutting her teeth at the contemporary Auckland tailoring house Crane Brothers, who not only cut suiting for men, but women as well. If Pearson was the last woman to ever fold inspiration gleaned from Unabashedly Prep into her personal style, I could stop blogging a happy man. And the admiration is mutual. In fact, she's the newest addition to the Dream Girl file.

    Read the rest of the interview as she goes into the finer details of her personal style and the nagging premonition she's the only preppy girl in the entire country.

    Jun 5, 2012 | Permalink (13) View/Leave Comments

    Dora left a comment on 7/20/2012 at 8:38 PM:

    i’m curious to know what your wife says about your “dream girls” pinboard. they are all babes!

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 7/19/2012 at 10:35 AM:

    @Elizabeth—I’m imaging a classic leather closed toe heel in walnut.

    Elizabeth left a comment on 7/16/2012 at 3:12 PM:

    She looks spectacular! I wonder what sort of shoes she was wearing with this?

    Leslie left a comment on 7/16/2012 at 12:50 PM:

    Love your blog, but I wonder why I have received this and many other posts three times in the last week?

    emjkmj left a comment on 7/13/2012 at 4:38 PM:

    @ Trailer Trad, if that’s reason #425, I’d like to see #1-10!  p.s.  great name BTW.

    Trailer Trad left a comment on 7/13/2012 at 12:30 PM:

    New Zealand is great, Reason #425.

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 7/12/2012 at 6:23 PM:

    @Andrew—Did you not read the first paragraph? :) Miss Pearson is the one who passed this along to me.

    Andrew left a comment on 7/12/2012 at 4:56 PM:

    Assuming the New Zealand Herald isn’t a daily read of yours, did you find this because tit popped up on your google alert for UnabashedlyPrep.com? Either way, an amazing and gorgeous girl. Sigh…

    Saturdays left a comment on 7/12/2012 at 1:53 PM:

    She is definitely an interesting person. And that interview was fantastic, I’ll have to watch Valentino: The Last Emperor to better understand what drives her.

    Y.L. Hollander left a comment on 7/12/2012 at 8:19 AM:

    It’s as if Annie Hall and Gordon Gekko had a love child.

    A terribly bright, engaging and gorgeous love child.

    Desmond Kinlaw left a comment on 7/12/2012 at 8:17 AM:

    She is just fascinating. Her look is classic. She looks like a woman who can command respect and attention. I think that’s very important and honestly one of the most attractive traits one can posses.

    Chinos & Cheesecake

    Robert left a comment on 7/12/2012 at 6:56 AM:

    Stunning…I wish my tailor looked like her.

    David left a comment on 7/11/2012 at 11:27 PM:

    Good to see a New Zealander here.


  • Wardrobe XI

    Style | Dress Code  

    1. Sid Mashburn pink/white university stripe oxford cloth button down
    2. Ralph Lauren linen dots pocket square
    3. Norman Hilton navy hopsack blazer
    4. Ralph Lauren silk knit tie
    5. Stubbs & Wootton Prince Albert velvet slippers
    6. Rugby grosgrain ribbon belt
    7. Rugby needlepoint wallet
    8. RRL low straight washed denim

    May 24, 2012 | Permalink (29) View/Leave Comments

    Joey Dee left a comment on 7/6/2012 at 3:29 PM:

    Those slippers are too unbelievably cool, hats off to you and undividual style!

    sa left a comment on 6/19/2012 at 4:33 AM:

    the fashion for the ray ban optical sunglasses ,i think you would be like it!

    xm0541 left a comment on 6/19/2012 at 4:32 AM:

    The fashion of the louis vuitton belts .You can see it for here

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 6/16/2012 at 7:02 AM:

    @Vern Trotter—I believe Polo made a knit tie with traditional tie tipping at one point. I would try shopping vintage clothing dealers or eBay.

    Vern Trotter left a comment on 6/15/2012 at 1:51 PM:

    Knit ties with square bottoms are everywhere. Do you know anyone that sells a point or V bottom?

    Vern Trotter

    Andrew left a comment on 6/12/2012 at 5:49 PM:

    Fred, thanks for this post. This is a killer outfit and I bet it looks awesome when worn with some swagger. Keep up the awesome work!

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 6/12/2012 at 7:00 AM:

    @Tim—Please check out the previous Wardrobe X post to understand the “why” behind these collages.

    Tim left a comment on 6/11/2012 at 5:59 PM:

    I generally like these pieces - and appreciate elements of FEC’s style - but am confused. If it’s not ‘about the brands’, then why are half these pics close ups of corporate logos as opposed to shots of these clothes being worn uniquely?

    Richard Ross left a comment on 6/11/2012 at 11:20 AM:

    Steeze through the roof.

    Chase left a comment on 6/9/2012 at 1:03 PM:

    I do believe that is the first time Paris Hilton has ever been referenced on this site.

    Ryan left a comment on 6/7/2012 at 8:40 PM:

    Haha, yeah it goes something like, “When people hate you, it means you’ve made it.” I’m sure there’s someone who makes the point more elegantly than Paris Hilton…

    MS left a comment on 6/7/2012 at 11:24 AM:

    Only two things in this life we can depend on: death, and people being cruel on the internet. Godpeed.

    Angel left a comment on 6/7/2012 at 10:11 AM:

    Cool stuff F.E., I got a tie just like that but at a thrift store. Its a bit short for me though. I’ll have to find someone with a smaller neck and a bit shorter who can get some use out of it.

    Angel’s Point of View

    K.T.K left a comment on 6/7/2012 at 8:38 AM:

    I really appreciate your style and posts. You have excellent, timeless taste that, in my opinion, more people should embody. To be honest, I’m tired of seeing pajama pants in the airport. Your style is Americana inspired and practical- what more could you ask for? Keep up the good work.

    MGM left a comment on 6/7/2012 at 6:04 AM:

    This post just oozes with creativity and personal style.  And as Mr. Castleberry has already mentioned, we are all here only because we want to see his latest posts.  So, let’s keep things friendly here!

    Saturdays left a comment on 6/7/2012 at 12:25 AM:

    Two thoughts here Fred:

    First, great post I love your style and I am glad you are with RL. I think like you, and eventually I want to work at RL as well because of my sheer love for their products, lifestyle and image. I trust your judgement and really appreciate your thoughts and input that go into these blog posts.

    Secondly, I was wondering if you knew what happened to the young and hip Norman Hilton we sawa year ago. It seems they matured a bit and sort of disappointed me. The shoot you did a long while back was absolutely breath taking and I still regret not buying a sport coat from them back then, with the throat latch and all.

    Suggestion: I would love to see the progress and method of your work at RL (if that is allowed)

    Also my real email is used for this when I comment.

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 10:40 PM:

    @Ryan—Thank you sir. I actually don’t know what Hilton says about haters. Please indulge me.

    Ryan left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 7:21 PM:

    As always, your style is original and awesome, Fred! You know what Paris Hilton says about haters…

    emjkmj left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 3:49 PM:

    I am grateful to those bloggers who take the time to put themselves out there.  Blogs cost me nothing and provide free information and entertainment.  Thank you.

    Matt M. - The Cleanest Corner. left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 3:18 PM:

    Much love and respect to one of the most well-put-together gents out there, Fred Castleberry. He’s made a career off of his vision and penchant for a certain niche. As you said yourself, Fred, it’s not about what you wear, but how you wear it. I incorporate a lot of Ralph Lauren into my wardrobe and even have some of the same pieces as you, but I wear them completely different than you do. Not many can “pull off” the outfit reflected in the photos above, and not a single person at all can carry his/herself the same as you while wearing it. Keep inspiring, keep striving, and never take negativity on comment threads too serious. As the great Dr. Seuss once said, “Those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.”

    Antares F left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 3:17 PM:

    That looks to be a Brooks Brothers button on the blazer, even though it’s listed as a Norman Hilton. I can’t imagine you would have switched buttons from one brand to another.

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 12:30 PM:

    @GHY—I work with classically trained, experienced product designers. I never shared that I was in concept marketing…nor would I be interested in a position as such. Go read my “About” section…it’s all right there.

    GHY left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 12:26 PM:

    Don’t you typically need experience as a designer to be hired by RL as a product designer? I thought you told us all that your job was in concept marketing - no?

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 12:26 PM:

    @Ty Webb—Style is not about what brands one chooses to wear but instead about how one wears the pieces they choose to fold into their wardrobe. Do you think most people are wearing those zebra print Prince Alberts??? Wake up man. You cry that my personal style is 60% of the company from which I buy them from, but are your pieces any different? Does your oxford shirt look much different than mine? Does your ribbon belt look much different than mine? My guess is they look similar. The difference between you and me is in how we wear them. Many companies manufacture similar products to Ralph Lauren. Ralph Lauren just chooses to make them better (quality) in many cases.

    Ty Webb left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 12:11 PM:

    @FEC - I don’t doubt that you’re a fan of RL products. You prattle on about how this blog is a reflection of your personal style.  Well how can it be YOUR personal style if 60% of the items come from one manufacturer?

    Al left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 11:58 AM:

    Loving the Stubbs and Wootton slippers, are they vintage? Also, are those Brooks Brothers buttons on a Norman Hilton jacket?

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 11:50 AM:

    @Ty Webb—Ralph Lauren does not pay me to push their products. I am actually employed by them to design product. I wear the product because I like it. I talk about the product here because I like it. If you aren’t a fanatic about the company you work for, then what are you doing there?

    Ty Webb left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 11:38 AM:

    So let’s see, you’re paid by Ralph Lauren to push their products and 5 out of 8 of your selections are theirs.  Good effort indeed Fred.

    DBCC left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 10:18 AM:

    I LOVE 1-6, especially 2 and 5..  Great effort, Fred.


  • Wardrobe X

    Style | Dress Code  

    Since moving to New York a couple of months ago, imagine my disappointment of no longer enjoying the luxury of an in-home photography studio. Photographing layouts of complete outfits requires the kind of real estate typically reserved for a Manhattan bedroom—sans furniture. However, the cramped quarters compel you, and every other New Yorker, to get creative. While these vignettes are not designed to showcase an entire outfit for any given day, they capture the spirit of it through carefully considered details and accessories.

    1. vintage Omega Seamaster wrist watch w/Smart Turnout strap
    2. Allen Edmonds wingtips
    3. Ralph Lauren sterling silver engine turn buckle and leather strap
    4. Rugby university stripe oxford cloth button down shirt

    May 15, 2012 | Permalink (10) View/Leave Comments

    PSP left a comment on 6/23/2012 at 3:58 PM:

    I liked your Seamaster so much, I picked one up. Understated, amazing, and relatively inexpensive.  Prep with Sean Connery as Bond thrown in.  The LL Bean hamilton is also one my favorites since college.

    MagnaKart64 left a comment on 6/10/2012 at 5:03 PM:

    +1 on the Hamilton Khaki suggestion. I got one and love mine.

    JAH left a comment on 6/6/2012 at 8:51 AM:

    Well said, PSP.  My thoughts exactly.  You should also check out Seiko dive watches.  They are very affordable, keep decent time, and are indestructible.

    PSP left a comment on 6/5/2012 at 9:28 PM:

    Greeneggsandkus, Try a Hamilton Kacki or Vintage Omega Seamaster, about 100 sold last year at auction for aprox $300.  PSP

    Greeneggsandkush left a comment on 6/4/2012 at 9:35 PM:

    What is a good preepy watch at a modest price?

    PSP left a comment on 6/4/2012 at 7:49 PM:

    Also, hats off to Ralph Lauren and Rugby.  They are one of few retailers that ship to US Servicemen and Women in a combat zone.  They sent new a wallet in Iraq, in about a week.  Really brightened my day.

    PSP left a comment on 6/4/2012 at 7:45 PM:

    Superb watch.  Vintage is truly green. No packaging and lasts a lifetime.

    Makaga left a comment on 6/4/2012 at 8:21 AM:

    Welcome to NYC.  Hope to run into you sometime.

    Desmond K left a comment on 6/3/2012 at 8:51 PM:

    In love with the layout. Perfect color coordination with the background as well.


    Zachary left a comment on 6/3/2012 at 4:23 PM:

    Beautiful shots, Fred. It looks like you’re getting along fine in NYC. What did you use to make the collage? I like the grid layout.


  • Whit Stillman’s Guide to Preppie Fashion


    Whit Stillman has unmistakably garnered a reputation as cinema’s Preppie ambassador with the release of independent films Metropolitan and The Last Days of Disco. With his first film in over a decade opening to rave reviews this past week, Damsels in Distress is certainly not excluded from Stillman’s highly stylized manner. The L Magazine sat down with Stillman recently to chat about his Rushmore-esque past, the story behind the A.T. Harris tuxedoes in Metropolitan, and the enduring charm of madras jackets, Bass Weejuns, and green corduroy. Read more on The Measure as well as a thorough interview about Damsels in Distress at A Continuous Lean.

    “I decided the moment I graduated from college that I would never wear blue jeans again. And I have never worn blue jeans again.”     —Whit Stillman

    Apr 24, 2012 | Permalink (13) View/Leave Comments

    PSP left a comment on 6/15/2012 at 9:55 PM:

    I believe Whit Stillman is the nephew of old Penn professor Digby Baltzell.  Digby coined the term Wasp, was a WWII naval aviator, and hail fellow well met.  It is great to see Whit carrying on some of Digby’s style.

    kathie left a comment on 5/29/2012 at 12:14 PM:

    About the jeans/ranch comments below: I grew up on a ranch. My husband grew up on a ranch. Yes, we wore Levis and boots for all of the ranch work/riding horses, etc. I mostly would wear dresses/skirts when I wasn’t riding/working. The men, though, when they weren’t working i.e. going to church, out to eat, socializing, the men will wear starched, creased, wranglers, a nice belt, an expensive pair of boots, and an equally pressed/starch Ralph Lauren or Brooks Brothers button down oxford or dress shirt.  If it’s a dressier occasion, such as dinner at the club, then khaki’s (pressed/starched/creased) are worn, and yes, cowboy boots - expensive dress ones - are still worn.

    Tyrone Alexander left a comment on 5/18/2012 at 5:35 AM:

    Unfortunately we live in a society where people have been brain washed with all of the reality shows that have no point whatsoever that when presented with a smart comedy such as this with characters who speak in full sentences a lot of people don’t know how to handle it. now for the jeans I have two pair that don’t get much use but I do prefer chinos they just feel a lot softer and comfortable over denim in my personal opinion.

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 5/16/2012 at 11:51 PM:

    @Michael & Cam—I included Stillman’s jean quote in order to show the contrast between the old (him) and the new (me). I wear denim probably as much as Stillman wears chinos. I’ve always held that while the world of menswear was/has been discovering chinos again, preppies should have been discovering good denim.

    Michael left a comment on 5/16/2012 at 11:35 PM:

    You posted a picture on twitter not one week of you ago in Rugby torn jeans.

    CHC left a comment on 5/16/2012 at 11:09 AM:

    Interesting post. Seems like an exciting artist.

    Clay left a comment on 5/16/2012 at 10:43 AM:

    I’m a huge Whit Stillman fan and can’t wait to see his new movie.  It’s been long enough time between movies Whit!  His movies are fun to watch because of the banter, fashion, and mood he creates.  As far as his jeans comment, I can’t buy into it.  I went to a preppy dress code high school and a Southern state university and didn’t own a great pair of jeans until AFTER college.  I enjoy matching them with a dress shirt for work to break up the monotony of khakis and dress pants.

    Johnny Reb left a comment on 5/15/2012 at 10:19 PM:

    I agree with you, Vern Trotter. I can’t wear jeans with anything other than boots.

    Vern Trotter left a comment on 5/15/2012 at 8:11 PM:

    Jeans are for the ranch and nowhere else!

    cam left a comment on 5/15/2012 at 5:28 PM:

    fred - im very curious as to why you picked this particular quote to feature? especially given the fact that you wear and feature jeans on here often.

    Max left a comment on 5/15/2012 at 11:06 AM:

    I know a lot of people that are anti-jeans, but I can’t decide where to fall on this. 

      I remember pulling into the cape about 6 years ago and a 40s woman was wearing the most ripped up jeans that looked like she had them since the 80s- with an oversized, probably men’s, RL oxford tucked into them, and a hat and sunglasses.  Beautiful blonde hair. 

    Anyone else have any jeans thoughts/stories?

    Worthington left a comment on 5/15/2012 at 9:34 AM:

    This movie was fantastic. But might be too quirky and not “trendy” enough for the average movie attendee.


    Desmond K left a comment on 5/15/2012 at 8:42 AM:

    I’ve never heard of him before but I do enjoy fashionable movies so I’ll check it out.



  • Elizabeth McKay SS12


    A couple of months ago, I headed back down to Boca Grande with Elizabeth McKay to create some images for their spring/summer collection. The youthful, luxury label boutique nestled on the Upper East Side is headed by creative director and founder Elizabeth McKay Jenkins. The collection is fun, pairing big bold prints and an inspired color palette with luxurious fabrics and classic lines. Visit elizabethmckay.com to view more of the photographs from the shoot as they drop in throughout the season.

    Apr 10, 2012 | Permalink (3) View/Leave Comments

    Bailey left a comment on 5/21/2012 at 10:29 AM:

    I too would like to know where to get he backgammon set. Thanks!

    Gail left a comment on 4/27/2012 at 7:18 PM:

    Do you know where that backgammon board is from??

    Worthington left a comment on 4/21/2012 at 4:33 AM:

    Elizabeth McKay is such a wonderful line. Really timeless pieces and I love all of mine!


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