Lacoste – Preppy Chic


Lacoste is a luxury French fashion company that produces luxury clothing, perfume, shoes, leather goods, watches, homegoods, and eyewear. It is most well known for its polo shirts featuring the crocodile logo. The company was founded in 1933 by René Lacoste, whom had a nickname of “crocodile” for the vigorous way he played tennis. The company has been owned by the Swiss company Maus Frères since 2012.

Lacoste was founded in 1933 by René Lacoste and André Gillier, with the name: La Chemise Lacoste. The early product of the company was the tennis shirt with the crocodile logo embroidered on the chest, along with clothing for sailing and golf. Up until 1951 Lacoste only produced the standard white tennis shirt, and then expanded their line to include colored shirts.

In 1952, Lacoste began selling in the United States, and the brand quickly became associated with the upper class. Lacoste was sold at Brooks Brothers stores until the late 1960’s.

In 1963 Bernard Lacoste took over the company from his father. The company continued to grow under Bernard, and their trendy tennis shirts became an icon of the 1980’s preppy culture.

Lacoste” and “Izod” were basically synonymous in the United States in the 1970’s and 1980’s, and most Americans would assume that the names represented the same company. However, Izod was a separate company that produced Lacoste under license in the US. That arrangement ended in 1993.

Recently Lacoste has regained popularity working with French designer Christophe Lemaire, who has modernized the style of the Lacoste brand.

Bernard Lacoste died in 2006, and his younger brother, Michel Lacoste took over as president. In 2010, Christophe Lemaire was replaced as creative director by Felipe Oliveira Baptista.

The Story of Lacoste:

Also published on Medium.

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