A polo, wool pants and a cardigan. They’re all simple items, but they were practically a uniform for Arnold Palmer in the ’50s. It was one of the tricks that carried him to icon status, and a surprisingly easy one to pull off today. So naturally, we were a bit curious about exactly how the glorious trifecta looked up close.

It turns out, it looks pretty good.

We recently got a peek at the original items, straight from Mr. Palmer’s closet (courtesy of the fine folks at his clothing line, Arnie). And as you might expect, it was glorious.

Our first impression: it’s amazing he was able to play golf in this stuff. It’s a good deal heavier than modern clothes, never mind modern golf wear—right down to the wool pants.

Otherwise, it holds up pretty well. The cardigan is courtesy of Robert Bruce—and a quick search reveals a lot of very similar items kicking around eBay. It’s a lot fuzzier than the J.Crew equivalent, but that’s part of what makes it drape so well.

The polo’s from his house line, but not that different from what you’d get from Polo or Lacoste or any number of modern sportswear shops. As for the pants, they’re from a tiny Cincinnati tailoring shop called Hamilton, a brick-and-mortar outfit with little to no Web presence, just across the state from his native Latrobe. (Maybe not coincidentally, they’re the same shop that makes the official Masters jackets.)

The lesson: stay local and keep it simple whenever you can. As you might expect, his house label is cooking up some interesting stuff… but that’s a story for another blog post.



  • Russell Brandom