Throwback Thursday

ALL POSTS Men’s Fashion Style

Throwback Thursday: Considering the Overcoat


This image from our 1991 holiday catalog shows five coats cut at waist level. You’ll notice one other coat, the second one from the left, goes much lower. If you’re looking at that brown, single-breasted overcoat and thinking, “dang, he looks pretty cool…” well, then:

1.) You’re right.

2.) It’s time to browse our selection of overcoats and trenches.

This is the season for three-quarter and full-length coats. Once associated with dressing up, over the years the overcoat has gone from formal to normal. Consider it a versatile piece you can wear everyday, dressed down with a t-shirt or a hoodie (you’ve probably seen Drake do that), over jeans and a button-up (as in our catalog image), or you can kick it old school and wear one with a suit. A classic look.

Whether you needed a reminder to break out your longer coats or are considering buying your first of this style, we hope you enjoy the style and the warmth. As well as the gravitas which comes with adding subtle structure to your shoulders and chest.

SHOP: men’s overcoats and trenches

ALL POSTS Men’s Fashion Style

Throwback Thursday: Sweater Weather


Feel that chill in the air? It’s time to wear cozy clothes. But as fall kicks in, it’s still not quite the season for the heaviest coat in your closet. An in-between measure is in order.

Check out what these guys wore in our 1978 fall catalog. Maybe you’re not about to go hiking, or perhaps teach a college English class – which is what these gentlemen look like they’re going to do.

But if their style is at all your thing, let these men inspire you. They’re dressed for the weather. They’re looking right. Now it’s your moment to shine.

SHOP: sweaters | designer sweaters | turtleneck sweaters lightweight & shirt jackets | corduroy pants | jeans | chinos | flannel shirts | scarves | boots boat shoes


ALL POSTS Men’s Fashion Style

Throwback Thursday: 1988? More Like Nineteen Eighty-Great


Image above: 1988; below: 2016

Scanning the archives, we could not help but notice our 1988 Anniversary Sale catalog was full of fashion and styling that holds up today. Living in the sartorial past may not be your thing–totally valid if that’s how you feel–but if you’re open to it, 1988 is a rich time to explore.

SHOP: Vintage 1946 chinos | Baldwin wool trousers (these are cropped already–buy them huge if you want to roll them) | Levi’s jeans (especially check out the 501 CT) | Comme des Garçons striped shirtdenim jackets | leather jackets | cardigans | turtlenecksplaid pants | Vans | Paul Smith plain toe derby



1930 Nordstrom Logo | Throwback Thursday

In which we look at old Nordstrom logo fonts and give them a close look. These are the fonts of our lives.


If you recognize the typeface above you are either a student of retail or a student of design. Or a Pacific Northwesterner, since this was the Nordstrom logo back in 1930 when we were a Seattle-only shoe store.

Now we’re national and international–with our third Canadian store opening September 18 in Vancouver, B.C. Next year we’ll add Toronto.

Learn about the features and history of this old-school Nordstrom typeface below, with commentary from Strath Shepard, our Creative Director of Designer and Pop-In@Nordstrom–hands-down the biggest font nerd we know.

–Andrew Matson

[continue reading…]


’70s Sneakers and Tracksuits | Throwback Thursday


It’s spring 1979, and these faux-jogging ladies in our catalog are enjoying the plush caress of head-to-toe velour. They’re also wearing our former in-house activewear brand Norsport on their feet. Nordstrom + sport. See what we did there? We’re on board with the sneaker trend we’ve been seeing for a while now and would totally get into wearing a pair of these vintage kicks.


And/or re-creating some key scenes from Xanadu in these sweet roller skates we found while doing a little Internet research on Norsport.


SHOP: Trendy Sneakers

–Jeff Powell


Totally Awesome to the Max | Throwback Thursday

early-80s-fashion-throw-back-thursday-nordstrom-catalog-2Let’s take a peek into the mind of this sassy young trendster from our fall 1983 catalog. What’s going on this year in her early ’80s world that she might be thinking about? The mall, for sure–and her Walkman. Spandau Ballet and The Police. Trapper Keepers covered with scratch ’n sniff stickers. Her bitchin’ Patrick Nagel poster. Potato chips that came in a box and the invention of the McNugget. Flashdance and Risky Business. Being barfed out by various, grody things. The two Coreys and/or Christie Brinkley. The A-Team and Cheers. Accessorizing with Lip Smackers. M.A.S.H. and cootie catchers.

She could also be thinking about the socioeconomic implications of the lingering Cold War and on her way to a successful career as a rocket scientist. Whatever it may be, we know this much is true: 1) after 32 years, you’re definitely going to find something to laugh at about your younger self; and, 2) those gold aviators and red Converse high-tops are still totally rad.

—Jeff Powell


Throwback Thursday: Why We Call Them Smartphones Now

It’s 1987 and this woman in our spring catalog, let’s call her Dana, is taking advantage of the world’s most cutting-edge telephone technology of her time: the first mass-distributed handheld cellular phone—a Motorola DynaTAC. A.K.A. a ‘brick phone’ because it weighed nearly two pounds and looked pretty ridiculous against anyone’s face even then.

In today’s money, the DynaTAC cost just over $9,ooo when it was first introduced in 1984, and it did one thing and one thing only for Dana: make and receive phone calls wirelessly (oh, and redial).

We wish we could ring up Dana in this picture and tell her that in exactly 20 short years a thing called the iPhone would be released, and it would have vastly more computing power than any desktop device she’s ever used. That it will do so many things that calling it a phone will seem nonsensical to her, and that it will be about the size of that belt buckle she’s wearing—all for around $500.


Compared to that ’80s analog technology, Dana’s safari-inspired shirtdress looks pretty stylish. We do love a shirtdress, and good style never goes out of fashion.

SHOP: Shirtdresses

—Jeff Powell


Throwback Thursday: When Illustrating Was Still a Thing

Maybe it’s the gaucho pants. Maybe it’s the tall boots. Maybe it’s the turtlenecks or hair or funky, stylized poses. Maybe it’s the impossible appendage proportions…or maybe it’s just the ’70s.

Whatever it is, we can’t stop staring at these fashion illustrations from our 1976 summer catalog. These retro pieces and leggy slim/flared silhouettes are kind of everything we want right now.

SHOP: The ’70s Trend

— Jeff Powell


Throwback Thursday: Denim for Days


What’s the best thing about this image from the 1986 Nordstrom catalog? Well, all that denim is certainly not to be undervalued.

But check out what homegirl all the way on the left is doing with her shirt tails through her belt loops. Tying a knot in the front is an established style move. But going through the loops and knotting to create a smallish exposed triangle–that’s next-level.

Shop: Men’s jeans | Women’s jeans | Men’s denim jackets | Women’s denim jackets

—Andrew Matson


Throwback Thursday: The Late-’80s Leotard

The leotard: synonymous with Jazzercise, step aerobics and the Crystal Light National Aerobic Championship. It was the workout uniform for over a decade (bonus points if you wore one with pantyhose) until replaced by a surge of advancements in activewear design and technology, and, you know, clothes that looked good on more than just one body type.

Thanks for the memories, wistful-looking ladies. We hereby close our 1987 spring catalog and lay workout leotards back to rest—right alongside Hypercolor shirts, Baja hoodies and stirrup pants.

SHOP: Activewear

— Jeff Powell