News & ToursOctober 7, 2009

Color Coordinated

SAN FRANCISCO -- Whether you want to call it orchestrated or choreographed or scripted, the clothes that the U.S. team is wearing during the Presidents Cup aren't just something they grabbed out of the closet, or found on the floor.

In fact, there's an Excel spreadsheet in the hands of the U.S. side, sort of a haberdashery scorecard, so everyone can keep up with the proper threads.  Maybe you will notice the duds the U.S. team wears during Wednesday's opening ceremony at Harding Park.

You didn't have to be a clothes horse to recognize the style on this track:  navy cashmere blazers, white dress shirts with red pinstripes, khaki slacks, red ties with navy and yellow stripes. Red, white and blue, imagine that. Of course, that's not all. The linings of the sports coats of captain Fred Couples, assistant captain Jay Haas and honorary captain Michael Jordan were the colors of the U.S. flag.

"So when they opened their coats, it's a flag," said Rickey Lamitie, president of the golf division of élevée Custom Wardrobes.  "It's pretty patriotic."

Couples recruited élevée, based in Van Nuys, a year and a half ago to provide the clothing for the U.S. team.  It's a collaboration with Ashworth, which is doing the sweaters and golf shirts.  For Lamitie's group, this is a breakthrough campaign, since it's the first time in the Presidents Cup history that a company other than Hart Schaffner Marx was chosen to dress the U.S. team in suits, slacks and sports coats.

There are 25 players on the PGA Tour who wear clothes with the élevée logo. When Angel Cabrera won the Masters, he was wearing elevee slacks.  Whether that made a difference is hard to gauge, but presumably, if the pants fit...

Lamitie said Couples was active in the Presidents Cup clothing process and selected the fabrics to go with the suits, slacks and sports coat outfits.

So far this week, everything has gone well. The only player who required a change was Phil Mickelson, who needed his slacks altered. Lamitie found a tailor in the Financial District to take care of that task. Oh, and Anthony Kim sent Lamitie a text message to find him a white belt. You must know how trendy and essential that is.

To keep track of the clothing merry-go-round each day of play this week, you have to know the lineup. Feel free to keep score at home.

Thursday:  White shirts with red tip collar; heather gray slacks with pinstripe; solid red sweaters.

Friday:  Blue shirts with white pinstripe; navy slacks; 'ice' white sweaters.

Saturday:  Navy shirts; black and gray 'birdseye' slacks; gray argyle sweaters.

Sunday:  Red shirts with white pinstripes; navy slacks; solid navy sweater.

And probably on Monday, they'll all be at the dry cleaners.

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