The Course of Style: Diamonds Are a Guy's Best Friend

Thursday February 19th, 2009
Justin Timberlake wearing argyle.
Kyle Terada/Getty Images

The diamond pattern known as argyle has been enjoying a revival, not just at Ralph Lauren and not just on the golf course.

Named for the traditional tartan of the Campbell clan of Argyll, in eastern Scotland, the diagonal checkerboard pattern has long been a staple in golf (with its Scottish roots), but it's enjoying a new vogue in the society at large. One is as likely to see it on a young music store clerk as on a PGA Tour player.

Nothing marks the transformation of classic argyle from old-style to new as much as the images of Justin Timberlake in the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am last week. Timberlake, who was teamed with Fred Couples, wore an argyle sweater in an asymmetric knit, the pattern tweaked on one side so that alternating diamonds were empty or just in outline (similar to the ones made by Nike Golf for the Ryder Cup team last fall).

Golfwear designers are playing with the argyle concept, twisting it and distorting it in novel ways. In addition to offbeat asymmetries and wild colors, there are also op-art argyles, the diamonds blown up way large, and, perhaps the apotheosis of crazed argyle for golf, the Swedish designer Johan Lindeberg's abstract black-and-white argyle sweaters with smudges of bleeding black diamonds — argyle as a dripping Rothko painting.

Timberlake is a fan of Lindeberg's clothes and brought in Johan and his wife, Marcella, as creative directors for Timberlake's own clothing line, William Rast. Meanwhile, this week Timberlake, a low-handicap player, was named 'The Most Stylish Man In America' by GQ magazine.

Just Say Boo
Boo Weekley, the burly pro who has made a style statement by wearing camouflage-print compression undershirts in tournament play (which some observers have mistaken for an elaborate tattoo), is introducing a clothing collection under his own name. Named simply Boo, the collection will be made by Firethorn, a Canadian company.

A two-time PGA Tour winner, Weekley is known for his clutch 2008 Ryder Cup singles win and for his laid-back, blue-collar lifestyle. The Florida native studied turfgrass management in college and worked for a period as a hydroblaster (cleaning chemical tanks) at a Monsanto plant in Pensacola, Fla. A hunter and a fisherman, he has been sponsored by the Mossy Oak clothing company, which specializes in outdoor camouflage apparel.

His Firethorn collection includes camo-print golf shirts, with "duck-blind" pattern side inserts, rainwear, pullovers, and caps. All have a script "Boo" logo. There are even a few styles for women. The clothes should be available in May.

Norwegian Swoosh
Nike Golf has signed Suzann Pettersen, ranked No. 4 in the world, to wear its apparel. Pettersen played for the first time in Nike at the SBS Open in Turtle Bay last week. The good-looking, blonde Norwegian, who is notorious on YouTube for her uninhibited cursing after hitting a poor shot, wore a black Nike polo shirt over a plaid skirt, among other outfits, and the company's highly touted, superlight Air Zoom Vapor footwear (13.8 ounces). Pettersen joins LPGA players Michelle Wie, Grace Park and Paige Mackenzie in wearing the swoosh.

Have a question, suggestion or news item for Woody? Send an e-mail to woody@golf.com.

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