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Discus: College Search and Selection: August 2004 Archive: Preppy?
By Phantom (Phantom) on Sunday, August 15, 2004 - 03:49 pm: Edit

When people say that a college is "preppy," what does that mean?

By Thinkingoutloud (Thinkingoutloud) on Sunday, August 15, 2004 - 06:17 pm: Edit

When I hear people use the term "Preppy", they often mean that a college has a noticeable population of students who graduated from private high schools rather than from public high schools. Sometimes "preppy" students may have graduated from public high schools, but engage in behavior such as dress that fits their stereotype of a private school graduate. Some people consider the term pejorative other consider it a complement.

By Carolyn (Carolyn) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 02:08 pm: Edit

When I hear the term "preppy," I think in terms of a student body that is on the conservative or apolitical side, very career oriented (*lots of future lawyers), and big on gap and abercrombie clothing. However, even at the most preppy schools, there usually is a subgroup of kids that don't fit this stereotype.

By Collegeparent (Collegeparent) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 02:48 pm: Edit

Look at this article on the front page of today's The New York Times:

By Newyorker06 (Newyorker06) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 03:27 pm: Edit

To be preppy is to come from an affluent, northeastern suburb, to have graduated from a private high school and to dress in pink and green. An oversimplification, but it gives you an idea. Traditionally, preppies golf, sail and play lots of tennis at the country club and drive around in nice (but not too flashy) cars. They "summer" in Nantucket, Cape Cod etc.

Try to get your hands on a copy of "The Official Preppy Handbook" for a better idea of the lifestyle. It's a hoot.

By Kousuke (Kousuke) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 03:41 pm: Edit

"and drive around in nice (but not too flashy) cars."
im gonna disagree with that, id think that preppy people would much rather drive an old bmw or benz just for the name rather than a new ford taurus. and also, preps looooove shirts with collars, stripes are always a plus.

By Asianalto (Asianalto) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 04:15 pm: Edit

Pink polo shirts with the collars turned up is how you spot a preppy guy.

By Mahras (Mahras) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 08:16 pm: Edit

Alrighty guys,

First off preps wouldn't be caught dead wearing GAP or A&F. Thats a fact. I am not a prep but my cousins are as well as the 20+ other friends I have in the NYC and New England prep schools. Usually these guys are old money. They do not wear anything that would be found in the modern American mall. Labels would include Brooks Brothers, Ralph Lauren, Burberry, Lilly Pulitzer, Lacoste etc etc. These are the type of stores that are called boutiques. Tons of them in NYC. The dress code for guys is usually a polo or a button down shirt as tops, chinos, khakis, and shoes would include loafers, or oxford styled shoes. The NYT article talks about the main stream prep which includes GAP, A&F etc. Funny thing is the die hard preps get really offended by it. They hate being labelled as buying clothes from places like AE, or A&F. this is NOT my opinion at all but of preps in actual NE and NYC prep schools. Usually the modern media portrays them as snobs but really they are pretty cool to talk with. They are career oriented with loads of corporate lawyers and wall street types. But you also have the occasional mix of doctors and researchers. Thats basically what a prep is.

However, do not confuse tehm with the fashionable NYC people. LOL. Otherwise you would be messing with me. . This unique group has a different kind of style which is basically a mix of all the other ones. Urban, preppy etc combine to form this style. Let me give you an example from today: I have on a pinstipe pant, a bermuda styled polo, and a pinstripe blazer with a wristband on the right hand and a jeans belt watch on the left. Wearing black loafers. That is certainly not preppy by a long shot but some people think that is.

By Collegeparent (Collegeparent) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 10:29 pm: Edit

Real preps do not wear Polo but definitely J Crew & LL Bean -- and on their feet it's TopSiders (or other moc variations) and maybe even tassled Weejuns but that's a little too retro. Latest prep fashion sensation: anything from Vineyard Vines -- to go with their Nantucket reds.

By Stanfordman99 (Stanfordman99) on Monday, August 16, 2004 - 11:10 pm: Edit

Damn, why did I invest in Abercrombie and Fitch stock? I thought you rich preppy boys loved that ••••! Buy buy buy!

By Collegeparent (Collegeparent) on Tuesday, August 17, 2004 - 08:58 am: Edit

Also, collars up is really retro Greenwich 1980s -- only sailors and other athletes are allowed collars up to keep the sun off the back of the neck (maybe walking along the beach is allowed) -- but collars up as a fashion statement on campus usually means you went to a public school or an outside-of-the-Northeast private secondary school. (Most preps refrain from alerting others to themselves so blatantly or rudely with collars up; it's too "nouveau." It's like the discussion of money within social contexts aka polite society, "It's simply not done.") As for blazers, only collars up during inclement conditions and only if you're lacking foul weather gear -- and the blazers had better have all three buttons buttoned while fending off the elements. BTW, the only true, authentic blazer is from "BroBro."

Also J Press is another boutique prized by preps. And Barrie Booters for the feet.

By Newyorker06 (Newyorker06) on Tuesday, August 17, 2004 - 09:52 am: Edit

Believe me, dyed-in-the-wool preps are sporting the collars-up look once again.

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