Fred Perry – the 100th Anniversary
Fred Perry may be known more today as a major designer clothing line, but Perry shot into the history books in the 1930s for his tennis playing. The three-time Wimbledon champion went on to found the Fred Perry clothing line, designing clothes to suit sportsmen and women. And now, the designer brand is one of the biggest in the fashion industry. To mark the centenary of his birth, Fred Perry has launched an exclusive new collection of limited edition polo shirts. The shirts feature a larger version of the Fred Perry 16-leaf laurel logo to commemorate the tennis star.Fred Perry – The Man and the Clothes
In Jon Henderson's The Last Champion: The Life of Fred Perry, there are some surprising facts about the man's life beyond his tennis stardom and designer clothes. Recently, the Observer listed 'five things we have learnt' about Fred Perry as a result of the biography:
- Fred Perry had a stalker – or practical joker. In 1931, before Perry was to appear at Wimbledon, the mad fan stole his clothes, organised fake photo-shoots and even began proceedings on buying a property in Fred Perry's name. The joker's identity was never discovered.
- It seemed Fred Perry was something of a performer off the tennis court too – he went for a screen test for the movie Top Hat which starred Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.
- Fred Perry was a man who never voted in an election – his stand to abstain from voting is said to be rooted in the fact his father was a renowned and respected MP. Fred Perry blamed the pressure of electioneering on his mother's death.
- Fred Perry seemed to have a tumultuous personal life going through four marriages in just 17 years. In between dating the likes of Marlene Dietrich (who he also taught tennis), the dashing tennis player was married to a model, an actress, an alcoholic socialite and a stockbroker's daughter.
- The laurel wreath that is so well known on the Fred Perry clothing line could have been a pipe – but his business partner convinced him to opt for the laurel instead on the grounds that women wouldn't like a pipe logo on the designer clothes.
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