Polo Shirts, Tennis Nostalgia & Classic 80s Casual Style
The Sergio Tacchini Young Line polo shirt is just one of the many classic 80s polo shirt designs we have available.
An iconic 80s sportswear style, the polo shirt goes way back before colour TVs, sportswear endorsements and the latest trainer tech. The polo shirt was one of the very first sportswear silhouettes designed specifically for performance and would later lead to legendary styles like the Sergio Tacchini Young Line polo shirt as famously worn by John McEnroe. Introduced into the sport by the French tennis player René Lacoste, who embroidered the famous crocodile logo to the chest, the polo shirt has tennis heritage and DNA running through its cotton veins. It was simple little details like the fact the collar could be upturned to protect the neck from the sun, a style which was popular in the early noughties as portrayed in Nick Love’s The Football Factory from 2004 when Tommy (Danny Dyer) meets up with Billy Bright (Frank Harper) for their sauna trip. Moving back to the early 1930s, it was then that the Lacoste polo shirt became available to the general public, and the tennis polo shirt legacy was born.
Above: A selection of some of the classic 80s polo shirts styles we have available at 80s Casual Classics.
As far as subculture is concerned the polo shirt was also a popular look with the original mods of the 60s and the casuals of the 80s. It was the casuals however who adopted it with more of a sportswear twist. Forget the cords and jeans for a moment, the rest of the outfit was sportswear, putting a more casual spin on the classic tennis style to a new consumer. The casuals liked to mix the polo shirt with the latest Forest Hills or the latest Settanta, all of which had already been spotted on centre court. Back in the 80s the collar wasn’t turned up like we saw from the late 90s and early noughties, it was firmly down, with all 3 buttons done up one of the most popular ways of styling it.
Above: The Fila Settanta polo shirt in white/red/navy available now from 80s Casual Classics.
The sportswear endorsements of the late 70s and early 80s created a new platform for the polo shirt. Tennis icons like Björn Borg, John McEnroe and Guillermo Vilas were the kings of the courts. And as far as sportswear at the time was concerned they were also the kings of that. Borg was Fila, McEnroe was Tacchini and Vilas was Ellesse. Each player had their own signature styles from track tops to match day polo shirts with the original casuals taking note and the birth of some of the most iconic sportswear styles to ever exist. Without this endorsement and 80s casual connection it would be hard to imagine where the polo shirt would be today.
Above: The Sergio Tacchini Young Line polo shirt in white/red available now from 80s Casual Classics.
We’ve now introduced a selection of classic 80s tennis polo shirt styles like the legendary Fila Settanta as famously worn by Bjorn Borg, the Sergio Tacchini Young Line and Supermac as worn by John McEnroe and multi stripe polo shirt styles from Ellesse which hark back to original designs as worn by Guillermo Vilas.
Above: The Ellesse Multi Stripe polo shirt in white available now from 80s Casual Classics.