By Garland Pollard
Rooster ties were a cultural item, and one of the rare brands of American ties that are so interesting that they can exist on their own without being part of a full line of menswear. Illustrator Steven Guarnaccia has a collection of the ties, featured on the blog Full Frontal Fashion. Rooster was started by Max Raab, the founder of Villager, where Perry Ellis worked after he moved to New York from Richmond.
Rooster, I think, survives, though their website, if they have one, is not easily found on search engines.
Sadly, there is no longer a large U.S. tie industry. In 2008, the Men’s Dress Furnishings Association, which began in 1947 as the Men’s Tie Foundation, folded, a victim of declining membership and sales of American-made ties, officials at the New York-based trade group said.
What are some of the great brands?
Granted there are some surviving European brands that are associated with great ties (Hermes, Charvet, Liberty). And Countess Mara (I recall my 9th grade English teacher Chuck Harmon used to wear them back around 1980) is still around. New brands like Vineyard Vines have sprung up.
Looking back, other big tie brands from the time of Rooster include:
- Beau Brummell
- Burma Bibas
- John Weitz (very much associated with ties but had a full clothing line)
- Village Square
I am sure there are many more tie brands. Perhaps BrandlandUSA readers can help us out below and name some other great tie brands that have disappeared?