Modern golf clothing is more about performance than making a fashion statement. However, sometimes performance and style converge in an interesting way.
At the British Open in Carnoustie, Scotland, the drizzly, windy weather had the golfers donning their usual pullovers and sweater vests. But sweaters tend to add bulk, and as the day goes on, players got hot. Several top pros chose a new twist: pairing a light polo shirt with a long-sleeved undershirt, for insulation. The contrasting colors of the longer sleeved shirt beneath often resulted in a vivid two-tone look.
Sergio Garcia, who lost in a thrilling playoff, played the final round in a bright green Adidas polo shirt with a white mock turtleneck beneath. The previous day, Garcia donned an orange polo, which contrasted with a dark red long-sleeve shirt underneath.
The American Boo Weekley caught the eye in a camouflage-print, long-sleeved shirt under his standard golf polo. Several reporters initially thought he was heavily tattooed.
Rich Beem and Zach Johnson also went for tight-fitting long-sleeve jerseys, almost like a second skin, under their golf shirts. Stewart Cink wore a similar look, but both of his shirts were dark blue, for a muted contrast. (Tiger Woods had his own two-tone approach: a camel-colored Nike sweater over a tight, long-sleeved white mock turtleneck. He switched from long-sleeved sweater to sweater vest as conditions warmed up.)
The layering approach, reminiscent of “That 70’s Show,” allowed for freedom of movement and flexibility in the face of varying weather conditions. At Carnoustie, it protected the player from the elements without being overwarm.
In the 1970’s, of course, golf was considered very unhip. Nowadays, young men are very much taken with golf, and their style influence is increasing. The professionals, especially the younger ones, are moving toward the bold graphic looks and designs — stripes, color-blocking, and contrasting inset color panels — that are popular in other sports.