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The Corduroy Appreciation Club
Hail the wale
I made this episode in collaboration with my friend Leah Rodriguez, who, in-depth reporter that she is, proceeded to ask everyone in her life about corduroy and what it means to them. She talked to people who loved it, people who hated it. Some said it was for babies. Some said it was for old people. Some said it was snobby. Some said it was for yokels. It seems to mean so many different things- and many of them opposites.
Leah talked to a man who said he was teased at a comedy show for wearing corduroy (backwoods! redneck!) but Leah’s own mom, who is a therapist, thinks it looks more professional with her clients.
So clearly, corduroy is misunderstood. It’s just weird. And maybe that’s why the people who love it needed to stick together.
At the core of this episode is a mystery. I don’t quite remember how I heard about the Corduroy Appreciation Club. But it’s a secret society devoted to Corduroy. And Leah and I were determined to get in there and figure out out they work.
The second half of the story is about another time that a group of people picked up this forgotten, misunderstood fabric, and made it their own.
A tradition specifically from Indiana: Senior Cords. A regional style that hit peak popularity in certain parts of Indiana (especially around Purdue University) during the 1940s, 50’s, and early 60’s.
HOW COOL ARE THESE?
I couldn’t resist- I got an authentic senior cord skirt. I adore it. (The skirts are more affordable than the pants, if you wear skirts!)
But my favorite part is the back of my skirt: a map with a heart over Indiana!
But this look might seem a little familiar to you, because it was taken on by the popular brand Bode. They make modern versions of senior cords.
You can see these Bode senior cords all over celebrities and on red carpets. And on Harry Styles in Vogue.
And if you’re in the market for some gorgeous custom made clothes, may I please recommend the work of Clair Gunther (her brand is called Gesho)? She used to be a Bode illustrator and makes just achingly beautiful stuff (not just on corduroy! on all materials. She actually said her favorite is suede.)
And another article of interest: this summer I took an incredible class, offered by my friend Eugene Rabkin. It’s basically Fashion 101. It’s everything you need to know to have an intelligent conversation about clothing design and the world of fashion designers. I learned so much, and I can’t recommend it enough. The enrollment for his summer course is now open- it’s really worth it.
Ok. Sorry this newsletter is less verbose!
I was up late scoring and mastering this episode and I’m a little sleepy. This takes a stupid amount of work lol. So thank you for listening!!