The history of the sailor’s shirt

Published on Wednesday 10 July 2019
We go back to the origins of this seaside icon
The history of the sailor’s shirt

The sailor’s striped shirt has been worn in the city or on the beach for over one century, embodying the epitome of French style. This minimalist, nautical-inspired piece is an essential of the summer wardrobe, which makes it the perfect occasion to revisit the history of this icon.



As its name suggests, the sailor’s shirt is closely linked to the marine universe. In the 17th century, engravings already showed sailors wearing a striped vest, whose print was supposedly intended for spotting men who fell overboard. In 1858, the indigo blue and white sweater as we know it was precisely described in a decree, which officially introduced it among the sailor's outfits from the Navy.





The story of the striped shirt then continued on the coast, in the seaside resorts dear to Coco Chanel. During World War I, the fashion designer drew inspiration from the sailors and their striped shirts, and reinterpreted their go-to print to launch the "marine style" in her second store, located in Deauville. She created short striped shirts and silk designs that she matched to sailor’s trousers. Endorsed by the Chanel house and other brands such as Rodier, the striped shirt then conquered the whole country… until it became an essential piece of the women’s wardrobe.





During the 1960s, it was seen on Jean Seberg in "Breathless", Jeanne Moreau in "Jules & Jim" or Brigitte Bardot in "Contempt". The contemporary couturiers were many to revisit this piece, providing it with an undeniable stylistic aura, such as Yves Saint Laurent who made the striped shirt a key piece of his collections. Same goes for Jean-Paul Gaultier, who turned this basic into an icon during the 1980s.




The saga continues today, since many brands choose to reinterpret the striped shirt, season after season… This reflects in these three models available at Monaco Marine, to pack in your suitcase without further delay.



Exclusively for Monaco Marine, Closed created a striped shirt featuring classic details, such as long sleeves and indigo stripes on an ivory background, adorned with the Monaco Marine logo.


Closed for Monaco Marine top, 119 euros.





With its graphic lateral stripes and pleated back, this Odeeh top plays with details and contrasts to offer a new take on the classic style of the sailor’s shirt.


Odeeh striped shirt, 249 euros.





Another option, this Molli top, which picks up the iconic indigo blue and white stripes in a wave version, which is reminiscent of the rippling of water…


Molli top, 312,50 euros.





Go for a classical style with this Monaco Marine striped shirt! Borrowed from the men's wardrobe, it will be ideal to perfect a loose vibe.


Monaco Marine striped shirt, 95 euros.