If you dig deep enough there’s a reason for everything.
Recently I was wearing one of the new Scott Fraser Collection loop collar shirts and a friend asked me what the loop was for on the back of my shirt. “Ahh, I thought you’d never ask” – I proclaimed with a large sigh of relief. In these words or something similar I began to tell the tale.
The locker loop – The small band of fabric that sits in the centre back of a shirt under the yoke. Most sources point to this small but useful little loop originally being used by East Coast sailors, who would hang their shirts on ship hooks when changing. This detail soon found itself off the ships and onto the streets. Adopted by the likes of US labels such as Gant, Sero, Eagle, and Troy among others. These labels were sure fire Ivy league staples and such by the early/mid 1960s they had become known as ‘Fruit loops’ within some Ivy cultures.
They were still being used to hang shirts from in locker rooms but were now used to denote your relationship status or to show your interest. Young ladies would rip the locker/fruit loops on the shirts of boys they took a liking to. One Yale student removed his loop completely to show that he was taken – forget modern-day traffic light parties and Tinder.
A surprising detail embedded in history that could easily go unnoticed, it just goes to show there’s always a reason for a detail.