Golf shirts are so common today that it’s easy to forget that there was a time not long ago when they were only visible to the public during the Master’s Tournaments or during tennis and polo matches.
It begs the question-how did the golf shirt go from the golf course to Main Street? The answer is actually rooted in the golf shirt’s evolution.
The history of golf shirts began with the long sleeve oxford-cloth cotton shirt that polo players began wearing in the late 1800’s.
Although it looked quite different than the golf shirts of today, this polo oxford is actually the forerunner of modern golf shirts. The most distinguishing characteristic of the shirt was the button down collar that kept the collars from flapping in the wind.
In 1926 tennis player Rene Lacoste adapted the basic design elements of the polo oxford to suit tennis players. Amongst the changes that he incorporated into his tennis shirts were:
- Making the shirt white
- Shortening the sleeves
- Replacing the oxford cotton with loosely knit pique cotton
- Adding a shirt tail (tennis tail)
- Making the collar adjustable
When polo players saw the comfort and range of motion that Lacoste’s tennis shirt provided they happily adopted his version of the shirt.
The next major golf shirt development came about in the 1940’s. This one serves to help explain both the universal aspect of golf shirts as well as why today we call them golf shirts instead of tennis shirts.
Men began going to the golf courses directly after work and as golf shirt manufacturers took notice they began creating the shirts in a wider variety of colors. Before long men were wearing golf shirts to work and to the golf courses.
Interestingly, it wasn’t until the 1980’s that country clubs began enforcing dress codes that required their members to wear collared shirts (golf shirts).
The same functionality and versatility that made the golf shirt a big hit yesterday make it a must have in your wardrobe today.
Even better news for today’s consumers is that golf shirts are in a constant state of improvement. As a result today’s golf shirt buyers have a seemingly unlimited array of options as it relates to the fabric, weight, color, patterns, pockets, collars, and sleeves.
Hence, no matter the occasion (boardroom, casual Fridays, or the golf course) the golf shirt is an article of clothing that you can’t go wrong with.
Rock Bottom T-Shirts offers 19 different golf shirts in multiple colors and fabrics ranging in size from medium to 4X. Priced at $4.99 each, you can’t go wrong with our golf shirt selection.
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