Men's Clothes

Cotton Canvas Athletic Shorts

Cotton Canvas Athletic Shorts from Spring 1988.“Today’s high-tech activewear persists in ignoring certain basic human needs: e.g., pockets–essential for hiking or perambulating at large. Our Athletic Shorts are thoughtfully equipped with two side-seam pockets for keys and money, plus a rear one with buttons for wallets or other rectangular impedimenta. The elastic waistband is rather […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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. […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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.

FAKE: Odd Small Pocket Shirt

Another FAKE! From eBay March 2021 comes this terribly odd shirt that has been identified as a knock-off. While the tag looks correct as an early one, it’s sewn in an unusual way, and the very small single pocket is incredibly odd. I asked Patricia Ziegler about it and she said: “You’ve developed a great […]

Barn Jacket

This is a mystery jacket not shown in the catalogues. It has a leather collar, a plaid lining with two large pockets in the inside back of the jacket. Judging by the tag I’m guessing 1986-ish?

Rambling Jacket

From the Fall and Holiday 1984 Catalogue: “The deepest satisfaction of the autumn ramble is a brisk zephyr crisp on the cheeks. But never whistling down the spinal column. Our Rambling Jacket tames and gentles the howling west win–as well of those of the north, south, east, and change. Khaki twill lined with cotton flannel; […]

Shoulder Loop Shirt

This shirt came up in February 2021, but I’m unable to locate it in any catalogues. It’s a linen/cotton blend made in Hong Kong and is distinguished by loops on the shoulders, we think they are called glove loops. A red version of the same design but in 100% cotton and made in India. A […]

San Remo Shirt

From the Summer 1987 catalogue: “We went to San Remo for the art film festival and discovered a lovely, unpretentious village a stone’s throw from the glitz of Monaco. It’s sort of an off-Broadway version of the Riviera: a town full of stubborn artists, gregarious merchants, resplendent greenhouses, friendly hotels, and delicious cheap seafood. We […]

Chambray Workshirt

From the Spring 1988 catalogue: “Casting aside the well-worn adage “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” we present a variant of our well-worn and well-loved “White-Collar” Workshirt. The softly sturdy chambray that serves steadfastly in both boardroom and back shop now works a short-sleeved shift. Equally opportune for weekend roustabouts and industrious workers of […]

Union Pacific Shirt

From the final, Fall 1988 catalogue: “The substantial brushed cotton cloth of our Union Pacific Shirt is a swatch of American history: It’s woven in the pattern worn by conductors on the Union Pacific, Santa Fe, and Rio Grande lines when they crossed miles of rough new territory. Made in the USA, the fabric will […]

Bushman’s Shirt

Introduced in Summer 1985 and running through 1986, with short sleeves, epaulettes and pointed pocket flaps, the Bushman’s Shirt is easily confused with the Sahara Shirt, but the Bushman’s Shirt has pleats in the pockets. It only came in three colors: Khaki, Ivory and Pewter. From the catalogue: “For trekking the Outback, adventurous Aussies rely […]

Pyrenees Shirt

From the 1987 catalogue: “”Africa begins at the Pyrenees,” sniffed Alexandre Dumas. At the time it was a snub at Spain, but a century later we find it an apt comment on our own Pyrenees Shirt–sophisticated enough for the Continent, in rich, vibrant hues evocative of a bazaar on the Dark Continent. The fabric is […]

Buenos Aires Shirt

From Fall/Holiday 1986, an Indian made, striped, collared shirt distinguished by an extra panel in the armpits of its full sleeves for freedom of movement. “As sophisticated as the nightclubs of El Barrio Norte, this shirt embodies the debonair spirit of Buenos Aires. And when the sun comes up, it will still be as fresh […]

Tartan Shirt

From the Holiday 1986 catalogue: “The Scottish Highlands are a dreamworld of luminous lochs, special ridges, and clouds playing loose with the light; the landscape itself seem incurably romantic. Tartans–the rich textile color compositions of vanished Highland clans–grew naturally out of this place, like the mosses and berries first used to dye them. ROmantics ourselves, […]

Shirt 1035

This shirt is thus-far unidentified in the catalogues. It appears to be a heavy twill. The tag bearing the words ASSEMBLED IN MEXICO has not been seen before. I’d guess this is from late in the run, possibly even after the catalogues stopped but before new branding came in. Just guessing.

Knock-offs: The Banana Pocket

I’ve had this shirt in my collection for awhile and just didn’t know what to make of it. Patricia Ziegler has identified it to be a knock-off not made by Banana Republic. It’s a very mysterious item and I don’t quite understand what the point of making it was. It’s not like a Gucci handbag […]

White Collar Workshirt

The White-Collar Workshirt ran from 1984 through 1988, originally in Blue Chambray and later also in White or Khaki. It’s one of several shirts with a pencil slot in the pocket. From the catalogue: “Rugged enough to earn its blue collar, yet tailored finely enough for white-collar work, our chambray workshirt is the truest of […]

Save The Wales Pants

The Cotton Corduroy Save-The-Wales Pants were sold in the Fall 1987 catalogue, with copy written by a unrepentant clothing geek: “A world without wales? Unthinkable! Yet wales are virtually an endangered species, most wearing thin quicker than you can say “cetacean.” The wales on our corduroy are preserved for posterity because the fabric’s woven in […]

Caribbean Shirt

The collarless Caribbean Shirt was originally sold in Summer 1984 in discrete striped patterns. In Summer 1985 it returned in solid colors of blue chambray and white. From the catalogue: “Our classic collarless shirt, loose-fitting with full-cut sleeves, has always been our hands-down favorite for the tropics. It can be worn over a swimsuit or […]

Traveler’s Shirt or Twill Shirt

The Fall/Holiday 1986 catalogues introduced the Egyptian Cotton Twill Shirt, which has a similar look to the Expedition Shirt with its angled chest pockets, but the pockets have a pleat in them and the shirt lacks epaulets. It came in Ivory, Khaki and Navy. The shirt was rebranded in Summer 1987 as the Egyptian Cotton […]

Cotton Canvas Shirt

This shirt was the immediate predecessor of the Expedition Shirt, having the same design minus the epaulets, and even using the same catalog copy. From the Winter 1984 catalogue: “Amedeo Modigliani never had this to paint on, or he might have endowed his subjects with much shorter necks and saved the extra canvas for his […]

On-The-Wrong-Track Jacket

The On-The-Wrong-Track Jacket (my name for it): This highly questionable athletic wear comes in bright primary colors that seem very wrong for BR to me. Compared to the classic Athletic Clothing they DID make–these seem like a corner of the 1980s best left unexplored. It was not listed in the catalogue.

The Bushman’s Raincoat

Introduced in the Fall 1985 “Notes from the Outback” catalog, the Bushman’s Raincoat is one of the more distinctive items BR produced. It’s about as dramatic and interesting as a raincoat gets and will make you look like you stepped right out of the 1982 Aussie film “Man From Snowy River”. It was offered in […]

Nairobi Business Shirt

From the Summer 1986 catalogue: “Cuffs would constrict, ties would torture, pinstripes seem priggish in summertime Nairobi, where offices more like ovens open onto sizzling streets and baking byways. Yet commerce must be conducted here, as in more temperate seasons, cooly and correctly–with the provision that one’s collar at all times remain open for business. […]

Carioca Shirt

Originally sold in both solids and stripes in 1984 the Carioca Shirt was mostly sold in multicolored stripes. From the catalogue: “A more festive, more stylish, more sensual people than the Cariocas of Rio you will find nowhere on earth. Brazilians seem to samba through life chanting, “No problem, no problem, no problem,” to the […]

Men’s Ticking Shirt

The men’s Authentic Ticking Shirt debuted in Fall 1985 (AFTER the Women’s Ticking Shirt in Spring 1985)and continued through 1987. The popular, sturdy shirt came in Navy and Khaki Olive stripes. The stripes are three-part, two thin stripes on either side of a thick stripe, exactly like mattress ticking. From the catalogue: “Apart from opposing […]

Odyssey Shirt

The Odyssey Shirt is distinguished by the facing seams on the front and the pencil slot on its pocket. No epaulettes. From the Fall 1988 Catalogue: “Sturdy cotton canvas has been the sailmaker’s choice since at least the Homeric days. It’s also our choice for this classic shirt. We’ve sandwashed it (using the tiny grains […]

Expedition Shirts

The Cotton Canvas Expedition shirt was introduced early, in fall 1984, and was sold for most of the catalogue run until late 1987. It was preceded by the Cotton Canvas Shirt of the same design minus the epaulets and the catalog copy would be partially recycled for the first iteration of Expedition Shirt: “Amedeo Modigliani […]

90-Degree Shirt

These shirts were only offered in Fall 1988. From the catalogue: “We used all the right angles to create a boxed-plaid shirt of the coolest Indian cotton. The subdued plaids will please eyes eager for autumn’s rich, muted shades. The smooth, airy fabric will please skin seeking shelter from an early-autumn heat wave. Both fabric […]

Australian Cowhide Outback Jacket

This is the earliest, rarest item I can think of seeing in a long time. The Australian Cowhide OUTBACK Jacket was seen in the Holiday 1983 Catalogue #16, and then in the Fall/Holiday 1984 catalogues. From the catalogue: “The Outback is a rugged land. The cold there is snappy, and it calls for a jacket […]

Officer’s Wool Jacket

The Royal Navy Officer’s Wool Jacket is a very interesting piece. A numbered, limited edition (900) item sold in Fall 1984 through Spring 1985, the jacket was made from Royal Navy surplus wool from around 1948. From the catalogue: “In grander days, British officers never obliged to suffer the ordinary — food, lodgings, brandy, cigars, […]

Mediterranean Shorts

From the Spring 86 catalogue: “Our male customers had been longing for shorts like these; now they long no longer. Our Mediterranean Shorts are lightweight yet crisp-looking. Best of all, they’re made of incomparable Naturalist’s Cloth: cool, pre-washed, pigment-dyed in subtle natural colors. From Malaga to Malibu, the sanest way to go out in the […]

Adirondack Shirt

Featured only in the Summer 1987 catalogue: “Plaid shirts traditionally go with crackling fires and low wind-chill factors, but we’ve broadened tradition to give them a summer home. This lightweight cotton one recalls the pleasures of camping in northern forests: pine-scented zephyrs, and owl’s call at dusk, the glassy sheen of a lake at dawn. […]

Oil Driller’s Shirt

From the Summer 1986 “Voices from Africa” catalogue: ” Life frequently gets warm for foreign technicians working the offshore oil fields of North Africa. Going about one’s business while the aircraft and carriers of super-powers and quasi-powers jostle for media coverage is enough to make any geologist break into a sweat on occasion. When you […]

Sahara Shirt

The Sahara Shirt is easily confused with the Short Sleeved Expedition Shirt. The obvious difference is in the pockets, the Sahara pockets come to a point at the button while the Expedition Shirt has angled corners on the pocket flap. It’s also confused with the Bushman’s Shirt which has pleats in the pockets. The Sahara […]

Mandalay Shirt

These colorful, lightweight shirts have a slight texture to them and are great summer shirts. Only offered in the Spring 1988 “Road to Mandalay” catalogue. Note the catalogue is using some spot photographs rather than illustrations. From catalogue: “We had these shirts woven in a village where hand looms are still used to make fine, […]

Lightweight Field Jacket

From the Fall 1988 catalogue: “Our lightweight Field Jacket, made from hearty Expedition Cloth, offers the breeze-blocking qualities of a windcheater as well as the pinache of the classic field jacket. With plenty of pockets, adjustable drawstring waist, and wind-resistant zipper flap, it’s loose enough to layer over t-shirt, pullover, or sweaters(s). A most dynamic […]

Fully Lined Field Jacket

At first glance this looked to me like the Outback Bush Jacket, but of course the chest pockets are not angled and the closure uses buttons. The catalogue copy confirms that some details were borrowed from the Italian Field Jacket that inspired the Bush Jacket. This Fully Lined Field Jacket was only offered in Holiday […]

Corduroy Collar Denim Shirt

In contrast to the long-running Sierra Denim Shirt, the Corduroy Collar Denim Shirt only ran in the Fall 1985 Catalogue: “We roamed the High Lonesome for a considerable spell looking for a denim shirt that didn’t have pearl buttons or a collar that looked like a pair of Mule’s Ears. Finally, we came home and […]

Walter Mitty Shirt

“I-I think we’re lost, Mitty,” said young Shaw, shivering. It had been hours since they’d heard the comforting ta-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa of the forest service helicopter. Smiling, Mitty unbuttoned a shirt pocket and withdrew map, compass, and knife; from a narrow compartment in the pocket he produced a folding fishing rod. “Dinner.” He announced. Then, unsnapping the […]

Meridian Shirt

From the Summer 1988 Catalogue: “Like the meridian (longitude) lines on the map, the stripes woven into our crisp poplin shirt run straight and true. The smooth, tightly woven cotton remains unflappable even when the sun’s at its meridian (noon); the styling is classic enough for London, on the Greenwich Meridian (0° longitude), yet comfortable […]

No-Horse Shirt

The copy from the Fall 1986 catalogue tells it all: “The story so far: When we introduced this shirt, quite a few seasons back, we called it the Un-Alligator shirt, our commentary on encroaching logoization. Later, we renamed it No-Polo in homage to a certain designer who trotted countless ponies across countless chests. His attorneys […]

Sierra Denim Shirt

This is a shirt that ran from the 1983 catalogs to 1986 and really shows its Northern California 1970s roots. It came in Faded Blue and Bleached Blue. From the 1984 review by author and BR friend Herbert Gold: “Blue denim shirts followed the inventions of quill pens, the skull of Goethe filled with blood, […]

Short-Sleeved Bush Jacket

A Short-Sleeved Bush Jacket was offered in Summer 1988 only, although there were similar garments in the earlier days of BR. The pictures below, from an October 2020 ebay sale, seem to show a darker khaki tan than the catalogue art, but it’s definitely a Khaki Short-Sleeve Bush Jacket. The pictures below (ebay September 2020) […]

Apocryphal Affiliates Shirts

I love, love, LOVE the Apocryphal Affiliates Shirts. The series of 4 was only sold in the summer 1986 catalog, and advertised as being in limited quantities and very rarely show up on eBay. The team at BR must have had a ball inventing these fictional colonialist sporting clubs and creating logos for each of […]

The Naturalist’s Shirt

The Naturalist’s Shirt was a staple of the brand from 1983-1988 (and beyond) and is distinguished from other BR shirts by front pockets that do not have closure flaps, as well as no epaulettes. Most commonly, these shirts have smooth dark copper snaps rather than buttons. However, they did switch to buttons for a brief […]

New Zealand Tramping Shirt

From the Fall 1985 “Notes from the Outback” catalogue: “Despite their damp, chilly climate, New Zealanders are vigorous hikers, horseback riders, skiers, hunters, and fisherman–as comfortable outdoors as in. They’ll even go tramping in a freezing downpour, wearing shorts and this remarkable shirt. It warms like a coat and functions like a heavy sweater–being roomy […]

Outback Bush Jacket

Originally introduced in Fall 1984 as an Italian Canvas Bush Jacket, it was renamed The Outback Bush Jacket in the Fall 1985 “Notes from the Outback” catalogue. Its got so many marvelous details, like a throat latch, reinforced elbows, huge bellows pockets and a drawstring waist and of course, the angled chest pockets (possibly angled […]

Safari Shoe

The Leather and Canvas Safari Shoe has a very distinct look for a deck shoe, with its leather and canvas mix. It was sold from Spring 1986-Spring 1988. From the catalogue: “When we came upon boss of genuine Italian military canvas–tough, handsome, and (naturally) khaki colored–it seems as natural as walking to combine this strong […]

Foreign Legion Shoe and Boot

Introduced well before the Gap era, the Foreign Legion Shoe is billed as Mel Ziegler’s favorite shoe. The famous French Foreign Legion boot was made by Palladium and was called the Pampa, while the low-top version is an Oxford. Later on, the catalogue implies the shoe was replicated by Banana Republic (or made by Palladium […]

Trekking Vest

From the catalogue: “We designed this striking sweater to prove that outer-wear fit for rigorous walks need not look pedestrian. We got the idea while hiking New Zealand’s Milford track, as famous for it’s bone-chilling downpours as for its breathtaking panoramas. Aussies and Kiwis chose wool for weathering cold and damp, so our vest is […]

Black Sheep’s Sheepskin Vest

The writing for this sheepskin vest is really neat, as it takes the opportunity to talk about the founding days and philosophy of the company in the 1983 catalogue as expansion was in motion. They describe this as a popular item, but I don’t find it in pre-1983 catalogues other than once in 1980 listed […]

Hooded Bush Vest

The Hooded Bush Vest was a real workhorse for Banana Republic. The design was first introduced in 1982, pre-Gap purchase and ran until 1988 and then beyond into the post-Safari era. Today they are ubiquitous and plentiful as they were big sellers for men and women at $39. Image from the Holiday 1982 catalogue. There […]

Journeyman’s Shirt

Similar to the Outback Shirt, this collarless striped shirt was sold in the Summer 1988 catalogue. Check out the unusual coconut-husk buttons. Thanks, Gary Pinkerton for the pics! “Time was when a man didn’t just roll up his sleeves to do an honest day’s work, he also removed his collar. Our Journeyman’s Shirt honors the […]

Proletarian Shirt

The keyword for this shirt is Corduroy. BR didn’t make a lot of them, there was a corduroy shirt with leather elbow patches and a leather collar called the Lodge shirt and there was this shirt seen in the Fall 1988 catalogue. It was made in Manila, Green and Blue. Pictures below from a September […]

Outback Shirt

Sold from Spring 1985 to Summer 1986, they came in several different colors. See the catalog thumbnails below. The striped, collarless design of this shirt would be revisited in the 1988 Journeyman’s Shirt. From the catalogue: “India is famous for its hand-loomed fabrics but its equally superlative milled textiles are often overlooked. Made of longer […]

Quiet Madras Shirt

From the catalogue: “Play word association with “madras” and you probably think “preppy”, “golf course”, “fifties”, or any combination thereof. Truth is, madras doesn’t have to signify loud plaids in violent colors: it refers simply to the lightweight yet surprisingly strong cotton hand-loomed in the villages of southern India. The subtle patterns and soft hues […]

Men’s Fatigue Pants

100% cotton fatigues sold in Khaki, olive drab and sand in the 1986-1987 catalogues. From the catalogue: “Designed by Uncle Sam’s tailors to prove we Yanks have a few good ideas of our own. Fatigues are the best of both worlds-a pair of military pants that was made for nonmilitary wear. Tow buttoned back pockets.”

Traveler’s Raincoat

From the catalogue: “Most “travel raincoats” are sorry affairs that cling uselessly to one’s limbs. Ours weighs just 26 ounces and folds into a compact envelope, yet springs out looking like the dashing, authoritative garment it is. Like the U.S. Marine corps, we chose a nylon fabric that’s sturdy without being heavy, and discourages rain, […]

Egyptian Cotton Safari Shirt

From the catalogue: “Egypt’s long fiber cotton enjoys a reputation as the world’s finest. Old-timers who’ve led hundreds of safaris through the African bush wouldn’t think of owning a safari shirt out of any other fabric. This is because its long fibers build strength into the weave of the garment without adding bulk. Our Egyptian […]

Short Sleeved Expedition Shirt

Originally sold as part of the Expedition Outfit in 1984, this shirt was reissued on its own in summer 1987. From the catalogue: “Any expedition is a foray into the imagination as much as a geographic journey. Our Short-Sleeved Expedition Shirt-in touch 100% cotton canvas, pre-washed for suppleness-is designed with creative exploration in mind. What […]

Houndstooth Shirt

From the catalogue: “Houndstooth is a true composite with a checkered past. To the British it looks like dog’s fangs; in France they think it resembles chicken’s feet and call it coq. We’ve even seen houndstooth gaucho pants in Argentina. Our Minister of Checks and Balances has chosen a most subtle version of this worldly […]

Expedition Shorts

The staple Men’s Short from 1985-1988, the Expedition Short is easily distinguished by the wide belt loops in the front. From the catalogue: “No fewer than six deep, roomy pockets-two in the back, four in the front. The tough cotton canvas is pre-washed for the look of an old salt.”

Hooded Field Jacket?

Life’s little mysteries… This catalog era coat comes up on eBay from time to time and I’ve never seen it before. A khaki jacket (update: red has been seen too) with a bit of a windbreaker vibe and with a hood built into the collar, same as the Hooded Bush Vest. The Stars and Bananas […]

The Ventilated Shirt

The BR Ventilated Shirt was originally manufactured for the British Army for use in tropical outposts. The cotton shirt is soft and light with an intricate weave to allow breathability. Introduced in 1983 it was sold in both short and long sleeves, with the short sleeved version selling until 1988. Interestingly, the earliest long-sleeved “Authentic […]

Italian Waiter’s Jacket

First appearing in the summer 1985 catalogue, this light, easy to wear jacket that seemed both timeless and very 80s. You could easily roll up your sleeves, slip on some deck shoes and be at home in the background of Miami Vice. They came in white always, khaki often, as well as once in navy […]

Ventile Poplin Safari Pants

Prior to Fall 1984 the line of safari jacket and pants were called “Kenya Safari Clothing” and were made for BR by the American outfitter Willis & Geiger. For more info, see Safari Jackets This changed in Fall 1984 when Ventile Poplin was introduced, according to the catalogue: ” As the premier, pre-eminent purveyor of […]

Shetland Writer’s Sweater

This interesting sweater just showed up on eBay. Kind of a fun challenge to identify! Going through the sweater category on the Abandoned Republic website turns up the Shetland Writer’s Sweater in the 1983 Christmas catalog, but without color to guide us. Is this brown sweater “russet” colored? The leather buttons, side pockets and collar […]

Correspondent’s Jacket

Produced from 1985-1987, the Correspondent’s jacket came in Khaki, Ivory, Olive and Pewter over the years and has a variation that comes with pockets on the sleeves. It’s the quintessential bush jacket inspired by globe trotting journalists. From the catalog: ” An overseas tradition that has stood the test of Time, as well as Life, […]

Kenya Convertibles

The Kenya Convertibles are a concept Banana Republic did not invent, and it’s a common item now from other outfitters, but let’s just say BR made them famous. The idea was featured in 1982 and resurrected as BR factory made item in Summer 1985 and was a staple item through Fall 1988. From the Catalog: […]

Yukon Shirt

I love the Yukon shirt. Ubiquitous in the catalogs, lined up in a wonderful array of colors like candies in a bowl. It came in a short-sleeved version, but to me the proper Yukon shirt is the long sleeve variety that will keep you cozy on a crisp fall day. It was introduced in summer […]

Richard Walker’s Pants

Richard Walker is mentioned in the Wild Company book (pg. 106) as an American working in London as a buyer who helped connect the Zieglers with Mr. Brady for the Traveling Bag, among others. When they ran into difficulties with fussy English factories he sent them to Italy for designing their leather and linen bags. […]