Nacho in Bridgehampton

06/08/2012 § Leave a comment

It’s been awhile since we’ve talked about polo but these gorgeously horsey photos of Argentine polo star and Ralph Lauren model Nacho Figueras, taken at Two Trees Farm in Bridgehampton, seemed like good reason to bring it up.  Even better?  There’s also a behind-the-scenes video clipYou’re welcome.

Photos by Candy Kennedy for Lifestyle Mirror.

Girl of the Hour || Patti McGee

21/06/2012 § 1 Comment

Skating above, 19 year-old California girl Patti McGee, who was the first National Girls’ Skateboarding Champion in 1965 and the first female pro skateboarder.  She was sponsored by Hobie (owned by the orange juice company Vita Pak) and appeared on the cover of Life Magazine.  Patti actually started out as a surfer in San Diego but took up skateboarding when it became popular in the mid-sixties (Life actually called it a “craze”).  I’m not sure what I admire more, the fact that she skateboarded barefoot or the fact that she maintains that impressive platinum beehive while doing it…

A few gems I discovered:
Patti on What’s My Line, one of my very favorite gameshows.

I love what she’s wearing, and how flummoxed the host appears.

A girl skateboarder AND an extension phone?!? Amazing!

Happy Go Skateboarding Day!

Photos taken by Bill Eppridge, via Time & Life.

A Day at the Races: Belmont Park in the 1910s

08/06/2012 § 3 Comments

In case you hadn’t heard, I’ll Have Another has withdrawn from the Belmont Stakes in New York this weekend due to a tendon injury.  I’m a bit sad that the chestnut 3 year-old colt won’t be making a run at becoming the first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978, but of course it is for the best.

Since I’m left without a horse to back – I’ll Have Another actually won me a pretty penny on Derby Day – I decided to see if I couldn’t find us some photos from race days past at Belmont Park. The Library of Congress delivered in a major way with wonderful images dated between 1910 and 1915 of the track, Mr. August Belmont, Jr. and his wife, a couple of lady Roosevelts and anonymous racegoers dressed in their finest.  I love how some of these look like the streetstyle photography so popular today.  Perhaps we should get Scott Schuman a time machine…

A sea of straw boaters…

August Belmont, Jr.

Paul Drennan Cravath (of Cravath, Swaine & Moore, for the law nerds)
with August Belmont, Jr.

Mrs. August Belmont, wearing a rather rad hat.

Mrs. Edith Roosevelt
(Mrs. Theodore Roosevelt and former First Lady)

Eleanor Butler “Bunny” Alexander-Roosevelt
(Mrs. Theodore Roosevelt, Jr.)

I feel as though this picture must be labeled incorrectly.
This woman looks nothing like Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, or is it me?

All images via The Library of Congress.

PF Flyers: Honoring American Style Since 1937

11/04/2012 § Leave a comment

If you follow me on Twitter (@MariahKunkel) you might have noticed that I recently had a guest editorship on Flavorpill Los Angeles, where I put together a shortlist of interesting events in the LA area, which also happens to be my hometown.  I was especially pleased to find out that the guest editor series was sponsored by PF Flyers, the iconic American sneaker brand that was founded in 1937 and immortalized in one of my favorite movies, The Sandlot (see Benny put on his magic pair here, at 9.00 minute mark).

Was also featured on Flavorwire!

First produced by BF Goodrich in 1937, PF Flyers featured a patented insole — the PF stands for “Posture Foundation” — that was marketed as a magic wedge designed to help wearers “run faster and jump higher,” endearing them to generations of children (see: The Sandlot) who believed in their special powers.

PF Flyers was also the first sneaker company to collaborate with a pro athlete, developing classic basketball shoes with Boston Celtics legend Bob Cousy in the 1950s, that are still available today;

and in the 60s, the adventurer Jonny Quest also relied upon the “action shoes”:

“He ran like the wind! Lucky he was wearing his PF Flyers!”
In a genius bit of cross-marketing, kids could get a free PF Magic Ring just like Jonny’s with the purchase of a pair of PF Flyers.

Starting in the 1970s, PF Flyers lost much of the popularity they enjoyed in the 50s and 60s, but after the recent purchase and revival of the brand by New Balance, PF Flyers is staging a comeback with its “Authentic American Style Campaign” that simultaneously honors the brand’s past, looks toward the future and searches out contemporary icons for truly American style inspiration:

“Everyone has a story. Ours began 75 years ago and is based on the tradition of crafting authentic American style. While we are passionate about what we do, we aren’t the only ones. The contemporary cultural landscape is flooded with purveyors of authentic American style.

To help us tell this ever-evolving story, we’ve enlisted a select group of today’s style-makers who we feel embody the same sensibilities as we do. Over the coming months we will be unveiling their perspectives in a series of video-based interviews where they share their thoughts on inspiration, authenticity, and individual style. Stay tuned.

The campaign recently kicked off with one of my favorite people, New Yorker Ouigi Theodore, Creative Director and Founder of the Brooklyn Circus. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing who else is included.  You can find all the interviews here.

For wearable sneaker nostalgia check out the Archival Reissue Collection.

I’ve been loving the Bob Cousy Los, with their “Gullwing Closure” at the ankle.

Girls! Run faster, jump higher…and wait for the subway!

Lastly, many thanks to PF Flyers and Gabby and Christopher at Flavorpill
for including me in such a fun project.

Archive photos via PF Flyers. Life photos by Yale Joel, via the Life Archive.

Girl of the Hour: Billie Samuels

06/02/2012 § 4 Comments

Billie Samuels, kick-ass girl cyclist, 4 July 1934.

Via The Sydney Morning Herald, Thursday 5 July 1934:



Miss Billie Samuels started on her attack on the women’s record from Sydney to Melbourne, held by Miss Valsa Barbour, at 10 o’clock yesterday morning. She will ride to a schedule which will bring her to the Melbourne G.P.O. at 2 p.m. on Saturday, a total time of 3 days 7 hours. This is about three hours faster than the present record. Miss Samuels provides for stoppages of about four hours in Goulburn (132 miles), five hours in Holbrook (333 miles), and five hours in Seymour, Victoria (501 miles), in addition to regular meal stoppages of about 30 to 40 minutes every 40 or 50 miles.

Miss Samuels arrived at Moss Vale at 4.39 p.m., almost 2 hours ahead of schedule time. She encountered rain from Camden to Moss Vale, but is looking fit.  Miss Samuels resumed her ride three-quarters of an hour later.

Images via the State Library of New South Wales.

Previous Persons of the Hour: 
Photographer Gerda Taro

Race car enthusiast, sailor and playboy Briggs Swift Cunningham II

Rabbit Hole: Vintage Sportswomen

07/10/2011 § Leave a comment

I figure…if these ladies can do all of this in a dress (and most likely a corset too)…

I really have no good reason for not taking myself to the gym, right?

Well, other than pure, unadulterated laziness.
Let’s keep it real.

For more images of vintage sportswomen,
head over to How To Be A Retronaut.

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