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THE FRED PERRY SHIRT

The Score on Our
White / Ice / Maroon
Fred Perry Shirt

MAY 2020

The White / Ice / Maroon Fred Perry Shirt was one of the first tennis shirt colourways to feature our signature twin tipping. We explore its colourful history.

Although its roots are undeniably in tennis, the Fred Perry Shirt has been seen on sports players and fans since its very beginnings, with the Laurel Wreath a proud symbol of the underdog.

You see, Fred was the son of a cotton spinner, who grew up to defy the odds. After becoming world table tennis champion at 19, he took his killer forehand to lawn tennis and won Wimbledon three consecutive years. Despite his unrivalled contribution to the sport, his success was always unexpected, and because of his humble beginnings, Fred was never truly accepted by the upper classes of the tennis authorities until much later in life.

Fred Perry and his ubiquitous Laurel Wreath went on to inspire a generation, and in the 1960s, football fans began asking their local sports shops for Fred Perry Shirts in their beloved team colours. Legend has it, it was the white / ice / maroon of West Ham United that proved the most popular, and a buyer from sports shop Lillywhites wrote to Fred, asking for the football club’s colours to be added to his plain-colour tennis shirt.

And so, white / ice / maroon tipping was added to the collar and cuffs of Fred’s plain pique polo shirt – a subtle signifier of your sporting persuasion. One of our first Fred Perry Shirt colourways to feature our signature twin tipping, it remains a firm favourite to this day.

To celebrate the legend and myth of our White / Ice / Maroon M12, it made sense to go back to its cultural birthplace and look to another West Ham icon: Ken’s Café. The footie club’s most-loved pre-match breakfast spot on Green Street, Ken’s place is just around the corner from where the Boleyn Ground once stood.

Although West Ham’s stadium moved in 2016, not much has changed inside the East London café. It’s still owned by Ken and his wife Carol, and every weekend hordes of Hammers line up for a cup of tea and a bacon sarnie, before getting on the bus to Stratford.

To celebrate White / Ice / Maroon’s colourful history, we teamed up with Ken’s glorious café back in 2018 for a colour takeover, taking it back to where it all started.