The relationship between stripes and style has not always been representative of the positive, aspirational world we are supposed to pedal here at MR PORTER. Stripes were a design feature on clothing back in medieval times, but were associated with, shall we say, some rather eccentric and morally dubious characters on the fringes of society. Prisoners, prostitutes, hangmen and clowns of all stripes all wore stripes, and to do the same would be detrimental to your personal brand. So unless you liked servicing men, murder or committing crime, you’d probably have left your striped sweater firmly in the closet. Or wherever medieval men kept their clothing.
Thankfully, at some point in the 19th century, Queen Victoria decided to dress her son, the Prince of Wales, in a sailor suit at a Royal Yacht event, thus giving birth to a new era for striped clothing, and one with positive connotations to boot. Marine, sea, and untold wealth and privilege all play rather better than death and illicit sex in the style stakes.
This we are very thankful for because – after a little help from Ms Coco Chanel and movie stars in throughout the 20th century – we now have a big old market for striped things, and things we can wear not just with impunity, but with pride. Such as these three items, which arrived on site today. If you’re feeling sleepy, try this by Oliver Spencer. If you’re in need of an extra layer, go for this by Loewe. Or if you’re feeling breezy, look no further than here.