Above: Moffly Media’s Market Editor Megan Gagnon with Ali MacGraw
Few items in your closet can transition through every season, but a classic striped shirt has long been one of them. Pair it with white jeans in the warm months or a blazer in the cool ones, and you’ll be ready for anything, from a work meeting to drinks with the girls. The design is now synonymous with chic Parisian style. The best part is that this staple won’t cost you a pretty penny—retailers from Dior to Target makes a version of this top.
As popular as the striped shirt is, most people who rock this look don’t know the cool history behind it. Here are a few fun facts we found for you (perfect dinner party chit-chat).
*The striped shirt made it in the spotlight when it was first introduced as the uniform for all French navy seaman around 1858.
*The original design featured 21 stripes, one for each of Napolean’s victories.
*The distinctive block pattern of stripes made it easier to spot in the waves if a sailor went overboard.
*After a visit to the French coast, Coco Chanel introduced the design to the fashion world through her nautical collection in 1917.
*Coco’s approval of the pattern got the attention of Marilyn Monroe, Pablo Picasso, Brigitte Bardot, Jean-Paul Gaultier and Audrey Hepburn, which helped solidify its popularity.