In 2014, we sold a large private collection of vintage Polo Ralph Lauren clothing. See photos from the sale and the rare designs from the Ralph Lauren archive.
When most people think of Polo Ralph Lauren, they imagine the classic short sleeved cotton mesh shirt, always adorned with the classic player logo on the chest. If you’re a long-time Polo fan, you know the brand has produced so much more.
During the 80s and 90s, Polo was a massive success, and the brand churned out thousands of high quality sportswear pieces that are still floating around secondhand shops today. We’ve sold plenty of colorful, collectible items from this era. Most of them were sourced from a client who inherited what must have been one of the largest private Polo Ralph Lauren collections in the country.
The vintage Polo Ralph Lauren style revolves around a variety of unique design motifs. Many of them have a cartoonish nature. One popular motif is the Polo Bear, or P-Bear, which often covers the front of a sweater or the back of a jean jacket. The bear is usually wearing a waspish Ralph Lauren outfit, and sometimes he’s engaged in a sport like golf.
Other less common designs include various athletic themes, American flags, fishing scenes, nautical themes, Western images and more. In addition to Polo, the “Polo Sport” line had its own unique style with large garish logos and stripes.
When it comes to vintage Polo Ralph Lauren, collectors have particular favorites. They seek out the coveted “P-Wing” or “Stadium” items with an intensity that may come as a shock to the average seller of secondhand clothing.
With so much fanfare surrounding these classic Ralph Lauren styles, the company took notice last year and tried to reintroduce select vintage items through the website RLVintage.com. Like a popular movie remake, the rehashed vintage campaign wasn’t a smashing success, and the website was taken down.
Today, you can still track down vintage Polo items on eBay or perhaps by combing various estate sales and thrift shops. Be sure to browse our shop as well for regular arrivals from all of the various Ralph Lauren labels.