Court costume for the season of 1934

Esquire, August 1934: “Except for the silk foulard handkerchief worn as a sash in place of the more prosaic belt, this outfit is unreservedly recommended for tennis players of every rank. The reservation regarding the coloured waist-handkerchief is not made as a matter of taste, since this item is smart as all get out; simply in recognition of the fact that many tournament officials still stick to the letter of the traditional rule against any deviations from plain white in the attire of contestants. So, if you are a tournament player you’d better have a white belt handy, if only for the actual playing time spent in organised competition.

The Polo shirt is of white, light-weight wool, with half sleeves; the trousers are of white flannel or that finish which goes by the name of cricket cloth; the shoes are white canvas sneakers (although the new Cuban Jai Alai shoes are equally suitable, and smarter in appearance.) The breast insignia is a small monogram.”

A pure coincidence that this image comes the same week as my acquisition of tennis shoes designed 24 years before this photo. I can’t help feeling mine would be smarter even than Cuban Jai Alai shoes (worn for a version of hand ball played in that country), though perhaps less practical for actual play. The silk belt isn’t me, but I do like the idea of a white tennis shirt with subtle monogram.
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A handkerchief belt is the most “dandy” thing I can think of… Who would imagine the greatest “dandification” in menswear would in of sportsclothes?

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I have been a tennis player in a while, well that period is a part of my past now, but I still remember my trainers shoes that I normally used to play with, thanks for your blog.


such an elegant outfit!

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I came across this very old post, looking for inspiration on what to wear for actual sports. It’s very difficult to find anything that manages to strike a good balance between being practical and contemporary and well dressed as, I’m sure many of your readers will agree, most sports clothing is tremendously ugly today.
I was actually hoping to find an article about what you wear when working out, or where to find quality sports clothes that look simple and classic. Would you consider writing such an article at some point, Simon? I think it would turn out to be really useful.