Bands of Preppies — Kiel James Patrick “Cape & Brighton Beach” And “Cambreshire Dunes” Bracelets
Look closely at the Spring 2011 Tommy Hilfiger magazine ads, which feature a country club's worth of Royal Tenenbaums-ready characters sprawled across a tennis court in their bermuda shorts, V-neck sweaters, letterman cardigans, crisp white button-down shirts, ribbon-trimmed visors and bucket hats, plaid shorts, khaki chino pants, and brown leather loafers. If you zoom in on the wrists of many of the male and female models, you'll notice ribbon-like bracelets with striped, maritime, checkered, and plaid motifs that perfectly harmonize with the "El Country de la Club-ius" print and commercial campaign.
Designed by Rhode Island native Kiel James Patrick, himself a product of a New England prep school, the bracelets feature prints classically embraced by the golf-playing, yacht-owning, Hamptons-vacationing, Ivy League-attending, tennis-loving set. From juxtaposed stripes running diagonally across the width of the bracelets, resembling traditional silk ties,to seersucker, madras plaid, and polka dot prints, the bracelets epitomize preppy chic style. All of the pieces were crafted using vintage-looking cotton, canvas, tweed, linen, silk, cotton rope, and leather textiles purchased locally in the Rhode Island and Boston regions.
The Cape & Brighton Beach collection, for example, draws inspiration from bonfires at the beach in New England during the summertime. The styles offered, then, include the Madaket Ocean Mist bracelet pictured at top, which features a sturdy ivory strap with overlapping, crisscrossing sky blue and navy stripes, chestnut brown accent stitching, and a light aqua, rope-like trim along the edges. For a more playful piece, check out the Bishop & Clerks Sound bracelet (shown last above), which features a navy ribbon with green whale designs along tis center layered above a madras plaid print.
If you'd rather keep your feet on dry land than venture into the open seas, you might find the Cambreshire Dunes collection more relatable, as it's inspired by rustic elements and features silks, tweeds, and tartans in neutral colors and relies on more unfinished edges and faded-looking fabrics to lend the pieces a vintage-looking, lived-in feel.
You can select the width of your bracelet (sizes range from Extra Small to Extra Large), so it will fit snugly around your wrist, and pick from a broad selection of brass buttons with either anchor motifs or colored enamel outer dials bearing the KJL name. We're sold on the nautical-flavored buttons, with their antique-looking, slightly tarnished interiors, embossed anchor motifs, and textured rope-like accents along their periphery.
With these bracelets, you don't have to be a Tommy Hilfiger model to join the "El Country de la Club-ius" crowd!
Kiel James Patrick "Rockwell in Berkshires" Bracelet, $35; Kiel Jams Patrick "Fahey Fayerweather Woodward" Bracelet, $40; Kiel James Patrick "Bishop & Clerks Sound" Bracelet, $40; and Kiel James Patrick "Madaket Ocean Mist" Bracelet, $35. Available at KielJamesPatrick.com