When I first had the idea for this post I thought it would be a quick look at a street style trend with the potential to become a style staple. Was I ever wrong. Somehow, I have blocked the relevance of the turtleneck from my mind. Until recently, the turtleneck only seemed appropriate on the cover of a 1990’s L.L. Bean catalog (or on the girls from the Mall Madness and Dream Phone boxes).
However – they are already all over my Pinterest boards (on style icons – including Kate Middleton!!, celebs, style bloggers) and always looking oh-so-chic. How have I disregarded such an important style element for so many years?!
Brief history of the turtleneck – apparently they first started showing up in the late 1800 as a base layer for athletes. Soon after the military adopted them as well. In the 1950s the black turtleneck became a style staple of the beatniks – making it synonymous with intellectuals and artists. But it didn’t go mainstream until Audrey Hepburn wore one in Funny Face. Since then, it has been worn but the chicest of the chic – Jackie O., Katherine Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe and on and on. (See here for more).
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I think it is safe to say the basic black turtleneck is a closet staple (and I need to buy one ASAP) but it goes beyond just that. Chunky knit turtlenecks in cream, grey and beige are what grabbed my attention in the first place.
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And the true sign of a real wardrobe building block? How well it fits into all style types – it can play preppy, minimal or super girly.
I’m sold. The turtleneck is a classic must-have!