René Lacoste

Paris, France


Fashion Designer Jean René Lacoste was born on July 2, 1904. He was a famous French tennis player, businessman, and innovator, nicknamed “the crocodile” by fans; he is now mostly known as being the namesake of the Lacoste tennis shirt, wich he introduced in 1929. Lacoste was one of The Four Musketeers, France’s tennis stars who dominated the game in the 1920s and early 1930s. He won 7 Grand Slam singles titles in the French, American, and British championships, failing to win only in Australia. The Four Musketeers were inducted simultaneously into the International Tennis Hall of Fame, in Newport, Rhode Island, in 1976. In 1933, he decided to start a firm, manufacturing shirts. His white, short-sleeved knitted polo shirts had the crocodile embroidered on the pocket, and were the first example of sportswear in fashion. Lacoste’s crocodile has become one of fashion’s most famous logos. The Lacoste empire now includes leisure wear, golf and tennis wear for men, women and children. When logo mania boomed in the 80’s, Lacoste became a major label. Rene Lacoste died in Saint Jean-de-Lac, France, in October 1996. René Lacoste’s daughter Catherine Lacoste was a champion golfer. It’s Prep-school-meets-Crayola on the runway. With an emphasis on colour, those sporty tennis skirts, collegiate sweaters, and of course, piqued polos come in hues for anyone’s fancy. Hipsters, Princeton preps, Audrey Hepburn, Andy Roddick

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