« To blaze is a synonym of « to shine » ; « to dazzle ». A meaning that can be a clue as to the blazer’s origins : it is, at first, a lose-fit flannel sport jacket, wore by rowers during races and training to protect them from the wind and the cold. These jackets appeared in Cambridge and Oxford around 1820.

IVY League Uniform

Solid our stripped, their colors are unique to each club. The blazer is sported as a sign of belonging to a team, and gradually conquers other sports : tennis, cricket and golf among others. At the start of the XXIth century, it is also adopted by the Ivy League students who adorned it with their university blazon.

From the aristocratic cloakroom to the shoulders of the Mods

The stripped blazer is worn by 1910 and 1920’s dandys. In the 30s, it take the shape we know today, and becomes a bourgeois garment. Its identity becomes more martial : fitter cut, navy blue color, golden buttons. It might be for that reason that another legend lives on as for the blazer’s origins. It might have been wore by the « HMS Blazer » crew during the Queen Victoria’s coronation festivities, and then adopted as a Royal Navy uniform to her request. In reality, the British navy’s regulatory uniform only emerges 20 years later, in 1857.

Teddy Boys in the 50s and then the Mods in the 60s took hold of that wardrobe element that then became a rebellious symbol, intrinsically preserving its distinction and allegiance statement.

DUCAT, Andy. SANDHAM, Andrew. 1925.

MOORE, Roger, act. HAMILTON, Guy, dir. Moonraker. 1979. 

CAINE, Michael. BAKSH, Shakira. Heathrow Airport, United-Kingdom. 1980. 

CONNERY, Sean, act. YOUNG, Terence, dir. Dr. No. 1964. 125 min. 

winning crew of the rowing race. Oxford, United-Kingdom. 1896. 

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