Author Posts

Mudcloth Jersey

From Spring 1988, the Mudcloth Jersey is a take off on the Mudcloth Scarf from Holiday 1986: “In Mali we discovered the African mudcloth called bokolanfini. Indigenous to the Bambara people, it’s the result of a painstaking process supervised entirely by women. Mud paste is aged, then painted on handwoven fabric to outline a design […]

Wakamba Bag

The rarest piece I saw in the Banana Republic Archive was this example of the Wakamba Bag. How rare? It was only featured once, in the Summer 1986 Update. “Using an ancient method unique to their region, the Wakamba women of Kenya twine these sisal bags by hand after dying the fibers with natural bark […]

My visit to the NYC Banana Republic Archive

This week I received an unexpected invitation from the Banana Republic Creative Team to visit the Banana Republic Archive in New York City. It turns out the team has loved following the Abandoned Republic blog and Instagram and they really wanted to meet me and share the archive. It was a whirlwind trip, and we […]

Trekking Boots

From Fall and Holiday 1987, the Men’s Sueded Cowhide Trekking Boots. “What good is a handsome pair of hiking boots if they’re gutless on the upgrade? No good. That’s why founder Mel Ziegler wear-tested these sturdy Italian-made boots on a rigorous trek to Machu Picchu. The response: unbridled enthusiasm, and his official stamp of approval. […]

Wedgwood Scarf

This large (29″x29″) scarf was not found in the catalogues. It’s pattern remind me of Wedgwood Blue china, so I’m calling it the Wedgwood Scarf. We have no idea when it was made, other than between 1984-1988. A Red version appeared on eBay in August 2021

Kikoi Stripe Scarf

From Spring 1986, a scarf inspired by the Kikoi Cloths: “We loved the texture and brilliant colors of the authentic African Kikoi Cloths but preferred a lighter weight fabric for scarves. So we had this feathery, drapy cotton specially woven for us in four color combinations that add a judicious measure of gaiety to an […]

Suspenders

The Linen and Calfskin Suspenders were only offered in the Holiday 1986 Catalogue, and the only pants with suspender buttons were the Covert Twill Trousers in the same issue. From the catalogue: “To some, a belt is merely a constricting device; suspenders do the same job while allowing greater comfort and better drape of one’s […]

Batik Scarves

From the Summer 1987 Catalogue: “Printed on light, finely woven cotton squares, these richly layered designs come from Africa and the Middle East. The colors are vivid, the designs are bold. Suitable for wearing or for framing.” Pictures courtesy Kimberlee English Anderson Brown and Rust Versions

Correspondent’s Skirt

There’s the famous Correspondent’s Jacket, Correspondent’s Bag, Correspondent’s Dress and now, in the Spring 1986 catalogue, the Correspondent’s Skirt. “Female members of the working press must dress for the practical demands of the job as well as for situations that require more finesse. Our Correspondent’s Skirt offers a neat compromise: slim and flattering, it’s also […]

Donegal Tweed Pullover

From the Fall 1984 catalogue: “A sweater as cozy as a bowl of oatmeal. For reading in front of fires or rambling on the moors, a dog of excellent pedigree frolicking behind. It looks as if one’s mother might have knitted it, and just as much care went into it. Full-fashioned, which means the sleeves […]

Donegal Tweed Sportsman’s Cap

From the Fall 1984 catalogue: “This genuine Irish cap is distinguished by two features. The brimsnaps down, and the back sits low. Our hatmaker, David Hanna, the world’s last tailor of true Donegal caps, actually handcuts the already handwoven fabric to achieve the exceptional fit. In the literary cafe of dublin, this is the cp […]

Donegal Tweed Shirt Jacket

From the Fall 1984 “Outfitters To An Empire” catalogue which detailed the Ziegler’s adventures sourcing traditional garment manufacturers in the UK: “Stride through the misty bogs, hands deep in deep pockets, thoughts deep in iambic pentameter–what else is a jacket for? Here’s a handwoven Donegal tweed shirtjacket that is character itself, oozing amenities like leather […]

Canadian Army Winter Pant

From the Winter 1984 Catalogue: “We had to buy some airplane parts and dented K-rations in order to get these marvelous Canadian Army pants. (Frankly, we’d have even bought a few tanks if it was the only way to get these pants.) Every imaginable amenity here: expert seaming, concealed button flap pockets, thoughtful suspender buttons. […]

Lamb’s Twill Shirt

Another item from the Fall 1988 Catalogue, the Lamb’s Twill Shirt came in three variations. From the catalogue: “This luxurious cotton twill fabric feels like the lamb gave you the shirt off its back. As elegant as fine wool, yet soft, reasonably priced, and easy to care for. Generously cut, in three plaid patterns–each equally […]

Surplus Swiss Military Gaiters

Wendy Jofee writes: “I purchased these (Leather Traveling boots) from the original owner, who says she wore them only a couple of times.  When she bought them, a store employee suggested the “straps” as well, since they were an addition popular with the customers.  I figured they must be gaiters of some sort, perhaps military […]

Roll-Up Hat

From the 1987 catalogue a bucket style hat similar to the Desert Hat and Snap-Brim Jungle Hat. : “For the sudden shower, the moonlight stroll, or the morning hike that lats into midday: a water-repellent cotton twill hat so compact and lightweight that one hardly notices it–particularly when it’s rolled up and stored in a […]

Desert Hat

Sold from 1982 to 1986, the Desert Hat is a classic “bucket hat” distinguished from the Snap-Brim Jungle Hat that replaced it primarily by the hat band, which is divided up by stitching on the Desert Hat. From the catalogue: “A cool, all-cotton hat to spare your head the sun’s worst punishment. Rolls up to […]

Australian Bushman’s Hat (1984)

The larger-brimmed predecessor to the Fur Felt Safari Hat, the Bushman’s Hat was made for Banana Republic by the famous Australian hat maker Akubra. The hat was sold for $95, much more than the Fur Felt Safari Hat. From the 1984 catalogue: “The 120-year-old Akubra company, one of only a handful of fur felt hat […]

Winter Tennis Vest

From the Fall/Holiday 1987 catalogue: “On cold, wet winter days, when the closest you can come to racquet sports is a desultory game of Ping-Pong, our Winter Tennis Vest is a remembrance of swings (and springs) past. V-necked and striped like a traditional tennis vest, it’s as soft as a new tennis ball and as […]

Women’s Leather Traveling Boot

An all-leather version of the famous Women’s Leather and Linen Traveling Boot was produced in Fall 1985. While it lacks the buckled straps of its sister, they were apparently sold with surplus Swiss leather and linen “gaiters” available in store. The catalogue copy partially matched the Leather and Linen version: “Most boots are just excess […]

Women’s Safari Pants

The matching pants in the Women’s Safari Suit. From the 1986 catalogue: “Properly tailored, perfectly fitting, with unstitched double pleats that forgive you that second helping. Two deep side pockets; two open welt pockets in back.” Poshmark photos.

Safari Jackets

Beginning with this first Bush jacket offered in 1979 Banana Republic always had some form of safari style jacket. Catalog number 3 in Spring 1980 carried some “limited supply” of a surplus “safari antique” that had been found in Australia. The fabric is described as a light tropical cotton weave. They must have been frustrated […]

Somalia Skirt

From spring 1988: “We were dazzled by the natural wealth of East Africa’s landscape; brick-red earth, tawny golden savannas, the faded green of endless tea fields stretching further than our eyes could see. And so we set out to capture Africa’s ancient earth tones in this skirt of airy Indian cotton. Deep of pocket and […]

Kasuri Shirt

From the Summer 1987 catalogue: “From Asia to America, almost every region on earth has a way of coloring yarn in intervals, then weaving the “space-dyed” threads together to create a shimmering, feathered effect. In Jaoan, this craft is called kasuri; in Indonesia, ikat; Guatamala, jaspe, meaning speckled or variegated. We’ve modeled our versions after […]

Lawn Bowling Trousers

Pairing with an Apocryphal Affiliates Shirt or an Italian Waiter’s Jacket made for a stylish ensemble. From the Summer 1986 Catalogue: “The serenity of a summer morning…the patience of men awaiting their turns…the beauty of a ball describing a slow, shrewd arc as it kisses the jack and comes to a stop. The very British […]

Shirt 1866 Men’s Painter’s Shirt

The pictures below are not the same Painter’s Shirt shown in the catalog page: the buttons are on the man’s side and in the catalog the buttons are on the women’s. It is mostly marketed as a women’s shirt (the blue one is a little androgynous) but the size chart show both men and women. […]

Low Profile Bag

Introduced in the Spring 1986 catalogue as the British Low-Profile Bag, it subsequently ran until Summer 1988 as the Cotton Twill and Leather Low-Profile Bag. From the catalogue: ” An elegantly informal legal-sized bag in which to carry movie scripts, plans for the new restaurant, specs for your latest invention–or just your tennis togs–this briefcase […]

Leather Cardigan

From the 1987 Holiday catalogue: “When the seventh Earl of Cardigan lef the ill-fated Light Brigade wearing the front-buttoning top of his long johns as an outer garment, fashion, if not history, was forever altered. But, with all due respect to Her Majesty’s forces, it took Yankee ingenuity to realize the cardigan’s full potential–by recreating […]

British Drill Trousers

British Drill Trousers (AKA Safari Trousers) were limited surplus items from 1980 until Fall 1983 when they were mass-produced by BR through 1985. They have the same waist as the Gurkha Shorts. From the 1980 Catalogue No. 4: “These spectacular British safari trousers, an inspired creation of Her Majesty’s tailors, were made for colonial wear […]

Aviator’s Scarves

White Aviator’s Scarf This is truly one of the ICONIC pieces from Banana Republic. Stylish and fun, it instantly transports you back to the era of the WWI Flying Ace. By far the most common of the three Aviator’s is the white Army Air Forces scarf. White silk, measuring 13 inches across and nearly two […]

1980 Catalogue No. 4

From the introduction to the 4th Catalogue, comes a great statement of the founding principles of Banana Republic: “When our first catalogue appeared in 1978, we gambled that there were others who shared our interest in functional, classic safari-style clothing, others who had as much difficulty tracking down these hard-to-find clothes as we did. We […]

Banana Republic Goes Vintage

ON June 17th, 2021 Banana Republic launched “BR Vintage”, selling actual vintage BR clothing from the 1980s and 1990s. A most unusual development, they selected items from the same sources we collectors do: eBay, Etsy, Poshmark, etc and resold them on their website at astonishing markups. A Hooded Bush Vest for $175, a Bombay Shirt […]

Copacabana Shorts

From the Spring/Summer 1985-1986, and 1988 catalogs: “A sublimely romantic design, these are the classic shorts worn by the heroines of those delightful ’40s musicals–vibrant traveling women forever on the road to Bali-Hai or flying down to Rio, dancing up a storm wherever there were palm trees and the scent of jasmine in the night […]

Gurkha Shorts

Gurkha Shorts originally were called British Safari Shorts when they were authentic surplus items. When they were mass produced they were renamed Gurkha Shorts and were sold for most of the run of the safari catalogues and even into the post-Ziegler 1989-90 era. From the 1985 catalogue: “The year was 1814. A young British lieutenant […]

Safari Socks

From the catalogue: “Dr. Livingstone wore socks like these, as did all the British is all the beastly climes of their empire. Indeed, ours are made by a sockmaker who has been cosseting feet in all the colonies (and former colonies) for a century. Fine combed cotton, turnover top, 18-inch leg; correctly imperial with a […]

Corduroy Bush Dress

The Corduroy Bush Dress replaced the Cotton Bush Dress in the Fall and Winter of 1985: “Cord du roi is the cloth of kings, but nonetheless we make our corduroy bush dress equally available to women whose blood runs less than blue. Indeed, the most red-blooded adventurer will appreciate its comfort and practicality: the hefty […]

Bush Dress

The Bush Dress was sold in Spring and Summer 1985. In the Fall and Winter it was sold in corduroy. From the Spring 1985 catalogue: “In the bush, it swings cool and loose, barely touching the body, yet protects thighs from a punishing sun. In the mountains, layer it over a Yukon Shirt (as shown); […]

1982 Bush Shirt

This is the earliest Banana Republic piece we’ve documented and it’s a very exciting find. From the collection of Gary Pinkerton, this is the Bush Shirt from the 1982 Holiday catalog. This makes it a definitive pre GAP item, and as such it’s exciting to confirm that the Stars and Bananas tag was in use […]

Whistlestop Dress

From the Fall 1988 catalogue: “Eager departures, ecstatic arrivals, and all connections in between wear equally well on this soft yet purposeful dress. Made of tightly woven, lightly brushed ventilated cotton, with collarless necline, capacious gored skirt, unfitted button-up bodice and yoke back, buttoning cuffs, and elasticized waist.” Blue version Bronze version modeled by Kimberlee […]

Linea Viaggio Legal-Sized Tote Bag

The Linea Viaggio line was offered from Spring 1985 through Spring 1986. The Legal-Sized Tote Bag was only offered in the Spring 1986 catalogue. Abridged from the catalog: “Traveling with natural fabrics is as dear to our hearts as the lure of the open road. As the premier travel clothing business in the nation, we […]

Savanna Bandana

This bandana is not found in the catalog as far as I can tell, so I named it the Savanna Bandana. It’s made in Italy and so far I’ve found four variations, brown, white, red and blue.

Kalahari Shirt

This handsome women’s shirt was only sold in the Summer of 1986: “When the rains return to the Kalahari, so do the elephants, springbuck, zebra, wildebeest–and then the carnivores who hunt them. For this inhospitable “desert” becomes a breifly blooming paradise when the hot dry winter ends. Our Kalahari Shirt is at home in such […]

Men’s Outback Shorts

Debuting in the Spring 1985 Catalogue, Men’s Outback Shorts did not run as long as Women’s Outback Shorts: “Hiking the harsh, demanding Outback, you carry as little extra equipment as possible and look for practical ways to distribute essentials. How best to manage this problem? Witness our Outback Shorts with expandable cargo bellows pockets and […]

Bushman’s Shirt

Debuting in the Fall 1985 Catalogue: “For trekking the Outback, adventurous Aussies like to rely on the durability of tough cotton twill. But most twill, until washed a few times, feels stiff. How to improve on a good thing? Weave a 100% cotton gabardine–a twill so fine it soothes the skin. Then pre-wash it for […]

Women’s Expedition Shirt

From Spring 1987: “For the real down-and-dirty work of travel–shadeless desert treks, kidney-jolting Jeep rides, damp dawn encampments–there’s absolutely nothing to equal mediumweight cotton convas for comfort and durability. It feels good, looks great even when unpressed–those few strategic wrinkles are proof of hard-won experience. We modified our popular Expedition Shirt to fit a woman’s […]

Pamplona Shirt

Whoever wrote the copy for the Pamplona shirt was channeling Hemingway in a serious way. From the Spring 1987 catalogue: “It was hot and fine in the plaza. The American sat at his usual table. “The ordinary,” he said to the waiter, who was young and sleepy and nervous. The waiter was thinking about the […]

Trips Magazine Advertorial

It’s unusual, of course, to see photography paired with Banana Republic clothing. The March 1988 Trips Magazine however, had a 16 page spread of artfully treated photographs of models wearing BR clothes from the Spring/Summer 1988 line. The photos are taken in San Francisco (including one shot in front of the Polk Street store) and […]

Banana Republic Bookstore and Catalogs

Tara Sendelback of GPF in the Travel Books section of Banana Republic (March, 1988) – Photo by Richard Lee, Detroit Free Press. Photo Courtesy Neal Moore Collection. Banana Republic launched the Bookstore Catalogue in 1986, and there were five editions in total, the last coming in 1988. At the same time, bookstores were opened in […]

Proletarian Shirt

From the Fall 1988 Catalogue: “Corduroy (cord du roi in French) was created just for kings, but this shirt is made of more robust, plebeian stuff–its aristocracy is born of honest labor. The fabric’s sturdy, low-profile ridges give it the softness and look of corduroy, but make it gutsy enough to engage in hard work […]

Halter Dress

From Summer 1988: “The halter neckline made its 1930’s debut on the beach, but it was not for another 20 years that it found its way onto a dress. Our soft cotton knit version has a modestly self-lined bodice, comfortably wide ties that don’t cut or bind, and a flowing bias-cut skirt that channels many […]

Merikani Shirt

From the Fall 1986-Spring 1987 Catalogue: “In the 1890s, Zanzibar was a teeming island marketplace, resonant with a thousand voices bartering in almost as many tongues. Among the most prized commoditities was unbleached American calico from around the Cape, sold by the bolt and admiringly dubbed “Merikani” in Swahili. The nomadic Masai especially loved Merikani, […]

Men’s Leather Hiking Boot

From the Fall 1985 Catalogue: “A classic that has never outlived its function: to support and protect the foot and ankle while maintaining a certain dignified standard of appearance. Made of supple, sturdy calfskin inside and out, with no gimmickry whatsoever; our only concessions to 20th century hardware are strong nylon laces and tough-as-nails, shock-muffling […]

Gandhi Dress

From the Summer 1987 Catalogue, the Gandhi Dress is made of the same fabric as the Kasuri Shirt although the catalogue copy does not describe the fabric. “At the turn of the century, Mahatma Gandhi entreated his supporters to resist the Raj by devoting daily time to spinning and weaving–as he himself did. The populace […]

Inside-Out Shirt

From Fall 1988 catalogue: “We have to admit we’ve always admired the old-fashioned orderliness of a fine pinstripe shirt. To make one that pleased us, we wove precise stripes into soft cotton as thick as Irish linen–then turned the fabric inside out to soften and blur the lines. The result is a loose-fitting shirt with […]

Mr. Brady’s Traveler’s Bag AKA The Gelderburn

Updated with new pictures! I recently set out to understand the differences among popular leather and linen English bags Banana Republic produced: The Low Profile Bag, The Correspondent’s Bag, Photojournalist Bag and Mr. Brady’s Traveler’s Bag. As is described in the Fall 1984 “Outfitters Who Outlasted the Empire” catalog the Zieglers contracted with many old […]

Naturalist Dress

From the Fall 1985-Spring 1986 Catalogue, the companion to the Naturalist Shirt and Naturalist Skirt. “A woman may be outstanding in her field, but she can’t stand out there forever; sooner or later, she must come inside and dress for the occasion. For her, we’ve designed the Naturalist’s Dress: elegant as physics, yet down-to-earth as […]

Panama Hat

There were three different versions of the Panama Hat; 1984/85 puggaree band, 1986 braided leather band, and 1987 grosgrain band. From the 1985 catalogue: “When our most swashbuckling president wore his jauntiest star hat to oversee construction of the Panama Canal, every American male suddenly had to have one. But, unlike Teddy Roosevelt himself, these […]

Pinwale Corduroy Shirt

From Fall 1988: “Pinwale corduroy’s velvety touch belies its toughness. Soft, yet invincible, the fabric grows more comfy with every wearing. With its rounded collar and softly tailored silhouette, this short blends durability and elegance in one wardrobe essential.” Rust version courtesy Julie Higginbotham. Eggplant version via Poshmark.

Prince of Wales Shirt

From Spring 1986: “A shirt is subjected to merciless appraisal before we make it a traveling companion. Is the fabric warm enough for an unexpected scirocco? Will the shoulders bear the strain of straps? Can the shirt be worn over and over without looking like it slept in train stations? Our Prince of Wales shirt […]

10th Anniversary Top Ten List!

Today marks the 10th Anniversary (!) of the start of the Abandoned Republic blog, when my collection first started with this wonderful haul pictured above. I can’t quite believe I’ve not only kept it going this long but that the tenth year has been the MOST productive, bringing plenty of new discoveries. I’m grateful to […]

Crossroads Belt

From Spring 1988: “East is east, west in west, and twain do meet on the buckle of our Crossroads Belt. We combined patterns we’d met in various regions of the world to produce this multi-ethnic motif. The buckle is antiqued silver plate; the slightly tapered belt is English leather. We beg Rudyard to reconsider.” Photos […]

Regimental Scarf

From Holiday 1987: “Traditional British regimental patterns are usually made into ties. We relaxed the concept and knit them into soft, mediumwight wool scarves. Simply smashing in three authentic patterns.” Argyle and Sutherland Highlands version via eBay May 2021.

Women’s Outback Pants

Introduced in the Spring 1985 Catalogue: “Dashing, loose-fitting pants in which Matilda could waltz, wrestle a wallaby or brew black billy tea beside a billabong. Whatever the occasion, she’d find six compartments for necessary sundries–enough to make any observant marsupial paint from pocket-envy. 100% pre-washed cotton canvas.” Photos from eBay May 2021

Roving Sweater

From the Fall and Holiday 1986 catalogue: “Rovers by nature, we’re always looking for sweaters that make congenial fellow travelers. Especially since our vagabondings Down Under convinced us of their virtues as outwear. (As serious hikers know, no fiber matches wool for warmth, even when soaked by a squall.) When we discovered roving yarn–a blend […]

Jaguar Bandana

Appearing in the Spring and Summer 1986 catalogues, they made a re-appearance in Spring 1988. Only $15 for a set of four! Such a deal! From the catalogue: “If a leopard could change its spots it would surely choose the showier ones of the jaguar–ornate, rosettelike, rich in hue. We’ve printed them on our bandanas […]

Amelia Earhart Jacket

This amazing jacket was made in two different styles. The Fall/Xmas 1986 version is brown with a button-on mouton collar attachment and striped lining (photos courtesy Tiff Wimberly). The following year they offered the jacket in dark brown without the attachment and with a quilted lining. The 1987 version is pictured below thanks to fellow […]

Town and Bush Hat

A very wide brimmed water-repellant hat. From the Holiday 1987 catalogue: “Some things you can do with this hat: Push it back to scan for storm fronts, wear it for protection when it rains, flips cards into it to pass a slow afternoon. Of French design in a sturdy herringbone twill, nicely finished inside and […]

Chanteuse Shirt

Some silky rayon to counteract all the expedition cloth, this shirt was offered Fall/Holiday ’86-’87, variously in khaki, ivory, wine, black and sage. This shirt is discussed (but not named) by Patrica Ziegler in the Wild Company memoir. “Whenever we passed through Paris, a must-stop was the flea market at Porte de Clignancourt—officially called Les […]

In Store Music

This picture of the original music tapes in the early BR stores came in from former BR executive John Mavrakis, who writes: “Patricia had one of our employees create music cassettes to be played during store hours.  As we began to grow our store base, it was no longer practical to go this route.  As […]

Town and Bush Shoe

Replaced by the Leather and Canvas Safari Shoe, the Town and Bush Shoe was available from Spring 1985 through Holiday 1985: “A surprisingly lightweight shoe that looks and feels better with age. The ideal all-purpose travel shoes-equally suitable for village cobblestones, hikes in the rough, and city restaurants. True moccasin construction offers a hammock for […]

Tropical White Shirt

Available Summer 1985 and Summer 1986, this shirt is similar to the Yucatan Shirt but doesn’t have pleats in the pockets. “As the basic black dress is to winter in the city, so the basic white shirt is to summer in the tropics. Cooly crisp, it takes the traveler from afternoon sail to twilight sip […]

British Land Forces Money Belt

Purchased from the supplier to the British Military, this British Land Forces Money Belt was sold from Fall 1984 to Summer 1985: “The factory that makes money belts for Her Majesty’s lads makes ours too. 100% cotton canvas, with a pouch and an official stamp of the royal crown. For extra security, you can wear […]

Expedition Hat

From the Fall/Holiday 1986 Catalogue: “The sun may have set on the British Empire, but it will shine eternally on this British wool felt hat. The sturdy leather band is buckled like a belt; air grommets and grosgrain sweatband help you keep a cool head. It even looks good hanging on the wall back at […]

Grip Bag

From the Summer/Fall 1986 catalogue: “Something about the word “grip” conjures up the sounds of steam engines and clattering horses’ hooves–travel by train or carriage, before the days of metal detectors. You simply threw your grip aboard and clambered up yourself. When you got off, the driver or conductor threw it down to you. We […]

Riviera Shorts

In the the entries from 1984-85, the shorts come with a belt made of the same fabric as the shorts. In Spring 1986 they added a webbed belt. From the catalogue: “Lightweight enough for a midsummer promenade in Nice, yet stursy enough to sit through a week’s worth of screenings at Cannes. The pre-washed 100% […]

Serengeti Shirt

Debuting in the Spring 1985 Catalogue: “Graceful styling and soft, drapy fabric belie the fact that this shirt is as enduring as the Serengeti itself. The cloth is overdyed, 100% cotton chambray–the same sturdy chambray fine workshirts are made of–dyed khaki and washed so it has the broken-in feel of a favorite workshirt, but the […]

Serengeti Skirt

Debuting in the Spring 1985 Catalogue: “Like the gentlewomen of the British Empire, who dressed in similar garments, the Serengeti Skirt is stylish yet very nearly indestructible. It’s rather full, for taking important strides, but not so billowing that it catches between the legs. Cool on the Serengeti itself, it can also conceal layers of […]

Ventilated Scarf

From Spring and Summer 1988, this light Italian-made scarf came in Rust, Olive, Khaki and Natural. “Made from the same liberating fabric as our famous Ventilated Shirt, this breezy scarf confers instant panache in even the stickiest of circumstances. Unfurl it on mild days or balmy evenings when you want: a head wrap to repel […]

Swedish Watering Can

We are very lucky (and more than a little jealous!) that Wendy Joffe found this hidden gem on eBay. This rare surplus item, offered only in Summer 1984, is identifiable as a BR item only still with the tag on it. From the catalog: “The Swedes who made them must have had some use or […]

Shoe Bag

We are not sure the proper timeframe for this piece. It’s the only one we’ve ever seen, and while the presence of the Star and Banana would date it to the mid-80s, the font does not. Read more below… This was submitted by Friend to the Republic Wendy Joffe, who writes: “This is an item […]

Market Bag

The bag was seen in the Summer 1983 catalogue, with a very unusual source: “British Linen Market Bag-Crafted By Authentic Felons: Made by genuine thieves, thugs, perverts, swindlers, pickpockets. Her Majesty recently put some of the knaves in her prisons to work sewing this classic market bag for little old ladies throughout Great Britain. With […]

Linea Viaggio Shoulder Bag

Abridged from the catalog: “Traveling with natural fabrics is as dear to our hearts as the lure of the open road. As the premier travel clothing business in the nation, we have certain standards to uphold. Up til now, we’ve been able to offer very few travel bags. The reason, to be frank, is that […]

Platonic Shirt

This shirt is an exciting find, as it’s quite rare due to a limited run in only two early catalogues; Originally introduced in the Summer 1984 catalogue and discontinued after the Fall 1984 catalogue, the artwork for the Platonic shirt was changed in the Fall catalogue with a more accurate illustration by Ellery Knight. The […]

Women’s Traveling Shoes

Introduced in Spring 1985. From the catalogue: “At last–intelligently designed traveling shoes for women, blissfully comfortable for walking but dressy enough for dinner; shoes equally at home with skirts, pants, or shorts; shoes that mold to your feet, ad give when they swell. The heelless Vibram sole has ridges that grip the ground and cushion […]

Nile Shirt

From the Spring 1988 catalogue: “Along the banks of the Nile, as in so many equatorial zones, we noticed how many dwellers shun the all-white clothing rule, choosing instead to weather the swelter in darker hues. The toasty tones of our brown plaid shirt recall the baked Sudan, where dun-colored native garb is both practical […]

Trekking Jumper

Available from Fall 1987 through Summer 1988 in Dark Khaki, Ivory, and Faded Blue . “With character as variable as the weather (or your travel plans), our Trekking Jumper is made of lightweight canvas Expedition Cloth that spurns wrinkles and welcomes a change of seasons. Wear it over a flannel shirt for clams at the […]

Artisan’s Nightshirt

As advertised: “At the turn of the century, British artisans-the empire’s potters, silversmiths, cabinetmakers-wore shirts made of the thickest, plushest traditionally stripped cotton flannel, woven 29 inches wide; the fabric was doubled and the shirt sized by cutting a hole for the neck. The resulting garment was more like a cozy place to live than […]

Leather Shirt

This suede shirt is not listed in the catalogue. BR did make a leather shirt called The Real Thing Chamois Shirt, but it didn’t have these pocket flaps. Made in Korea, the labeling appears to be correct, so I don’t suspect a knockoff.

Aztec Belt

From Spring 1988: “A sturdy union of fine English bridle leather and Aztec-influenced metalwork with contrasting top-stitching, this was the only belt co-founder Patricia Ziegler took with her to Burma last year. She says she needed no other.”

Shoulder Tote

Made of Cotton Canvas and Leather, this Shoulder Tote was available in Summer 1987 through Holiday 1987. “Imagination is the only limit to what this bag can carry. It accomodates overnight changes, swimsuits, shopping finds, legal pads and files; zips securely shut at the top; even includes and interior pouch for miniscule accessories. The straps–inch-wide […]