J. C. Leyendecker Arrow Collar advertisement (1925): beautifully framed reproduction
Arrow Collar Man and Companion Descending Staircase
By J. C. Leyendecker
For Cluett, Peabody & Co. 1925
Giclee reproduction on canvas
Image Size: H 16.25” x W 10.50”
Matted & Framed: H 22.25” x W 16.50”
Framed Price: $210.00
Packaging and shipping approximately $25.00
“Joe” Leyendecker received his first magazine cover commission shortly after he opened his studio in New York in 1899. The piece was requested by the Curtis Publishing Company of Philadelphia, which owned The Saturday Evening Post. JL's illustration work appeared on the cover of The Post's May 1899 issue. Over the next forty-four years, JL produced nearly 400 more magazine covers, including 321 for The Post.
In 1901, JL was approached by a handsome Canadian teenager named Charles Beach. Beach was, it seems, seeking work as a model. Needing one, Joe gave him a job. Four years later, when Cluett, Peabody & Company of Troy, New York selected JL to create illustrations for an ad campaign to promote its shirts and collars. JL began transforming handsome Charles Beach, dressed in stylish Cluett shirts and Arrow collars, into the paradigm of the well-dressed American male. The ads, which featured Beach looking sharp and commanding in places where the best people gathered, created a fashion sensation. The god-like “Arrow Collar Man” reportedly received baskets of mail including several proposals of marriage. No marriage was forthcoming, however, because Joe and Charles were by then an item.
When this ad appeared the post-WWI party remembered as the Roaring Twenties was halfway over. Beach was as handsome as ever, and Flappers were flapping themselves to exhaustion. JL's image insinuates the ennui that was setting in in however. While he sizes up the crowd and identifies his next pigeon she tries to locate someone who admires her. The clock was ticking for these two beautiful people and everyone like them.