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ON THE SPACE COAST
SECTION E
SUNDAY, MARCH16, 2014
FLORIDA TODAY
FLORIDATODAY.COM
STYLE EDITOR
SUZY FLEMING LEONARD
sleonard@floridatoday.com
W
hen it comes to golf, its
not just about how you
play. Its about how you
look.
I just like something
different, unique, says Barbara
McCracken, a member at Suntree
Country Club in Melbourne. Not
something that everybody else
wears.
McCracken, whos recently been
smitten by golf dresses and skirts,
puts some serious thought into attire
on the fairway.
I think theyre getting more ex-
citing, McCracken says of golf
Barb McCracken wears DKNY golf dress and Batamar hat.
Jack Jeffcoat is in Footjoy shirt and pants. MALCOLM
DENEMARK/FLORIDA TODAY
I
ts St. Patricks Day every
day to Karen Gaarder, a
popular bartender at Meg
OMalleys Restaurant and
Irish Pub in Melbourne.
The only difference Mon-
day will bring is a larger
crowd. Oh, and the bagpipes,
and the step dancers.
Gaarder grabs a straw as
she rounds a corner with a
glass of Jack Daniels, honey
and lemonade. She doesnt
stop as she gives out wise
advice for any Irish bartend-
er wannabe:
Youve got to have per-
sonality (and) multitask, she
says.
Mike Hill, bar manager
and restaurant partner
agrees, but you have to do it
to the extreme.
For sure, youll get ex-
hausted just watching Gaar-
der tend bar for a 4 p.m.
crowd on a Thursday after-
noon.
Like a hummingbird on a
mission, she darts back and
forth, barely spending a split
second to enter drink orders
on the register, pull glasses
of Guinness on draft, com-
plete with cloverleaf etched
in the foam. Then, there are
the orange crushes, the Irish
coffees, the plates of corned
beef and cabbage, cocktails
Pub bartender shows the Irish way
St. Patricks Day events pull out all the stops
By Pam Harbaugh
FLORIDA TODAY
Karen Gaarder offers an Irish
toast to two newcomers to Meg
O' Malley's. MALCOLM
DENEMARK/FLORIDA TODAY See PUB, Page 4E
Golfers new fashions
transcend sport
By Sara Paulson| FLORIDA TODAY
See GOLF, Page 3E
TRY BEFORE YOU BUY
Just like any article of clothing, dont blindly buy something.
Try it on. Be sure, especially if it has a sleeve on it, says Sherry
Scott, merchandise director of Suntree Country Club.
Swing a club (or pretend you are) when testing out a new
style. Make sure theres no binding.
Sizes vary, depending on the brand and individual article of
clothing.
They have made them fuller, Scott says of sizes. So a medi-
um isnt quite as small as a medium used to be. Im finding that
sizes almost dont matter anymore.
Customers need to try before they buy, she says. I just have a
few vendors to work with. Im thinking that this variation
wouldnt be there, but it is. You definitely need to try things.
They dont want it to look like a big sack, Scott says.
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FLORIDA TODAY SUNDAY, MARCH16, 2014 3E
fashions on a recent sunny
Friday afternoon as she
showed off a black and red
DKNY golf dress and red
Betmar hat. At one time, they
were just kind of plain and
dowdy.
McCracken notes cultivat-
ing the look is from head to toe
and beyond. We have a
joke with my husband that he
paints my tees the night be-
fore to go with my outfits,
she says, adding, I do have
tees that match.
Sherry Scott, merchandise
director of Suntree Country
Club, has seen plenty of looks
in her 15 years at the facility.
But there are still some old
standbys. Even if it doesnt
seem like it.
The fabrics have
changed, she says. Every
company has a cool technol-
ogy to their fabric, and they all
name it something different.
Christin Stewart, golf shop
assistant at Suntree, says style
is a mix of tried and true and
what the pros show.
I think it comes down to
the history, the history of the
game, Stewart says. But
then, Tiger Woods came along
and he wore the mock turtle-
neck. And that became OK,
because he was wearing it on
tour.
Whatever you see on tour
is eventually going to come to
the golf shop.
Suntree carries a handful of
vendors, including Adidas,
Ashworth, Callaway, Footjoy,
Monterey Club, Zero Restric-
tion and more.
These days, color and com-
fort seem to rule. We visited
with Scott at the clubs golf
shop to break down details of
the sports fashion.
Playing by the rules
When it comes to a country
club, collars are non-nego-
tiable. Denim is not permitted,
nor are T-shirts, Scott says.
Dress as if you were going to a
nice luncheon in the club-
house. Mens shirts need to be
tucked in, too.
Shirts with turn-down
collars or mock turtle with
sleeves are required, Scott
says. No tanks for men. And
ladies can wear slacks, skirts
or proper-length shorts.
Women can wear shirts
without collars. But the pref-
erence is a collar, Scott says.
I know a few years ago,
some golf shirts came out, and
they were just a rounded
neck, Scott says. I actually
had to get approval, because I
dont like to buy things they
cant wear on the course.
Womens shorts have cer-
tainly shifted in length. More
than a decade ago, Scott says,
Ladies shorts were to be an
inch below the knee or long-
er.
It kind of went from
slacks, in old, olden days, then
they went to capri, then
shorts, a longer walking
short, Scott says of womens
golf fashion. Then you saw a
trend where the shorts got a
little shorter. Skorts became a
new thing. And now this dress
phase is happening.
Just dont go too short, she
warns. You may not make it
very far without being asked
to go a little more modest.
Men? Not too much of a
shakeup. A short is a short is
a short, Scott says. I didnt
see as many changes in the
men as in the ladies.
Suntree has shied away
from selling mens pants. We
did at one time, but it was very
hard because of the length.
Golf courses at a resort
allow a little more leeway.
Were governed by a
board, and the rules are made,
and so on and so forth, Scott
says. When youre at a resort,
you have a different mindset.
Whats trendy?
One of the buzzwords when it
comes to honing your country
club style: color.
Every season, they
change, says Scott, who has
to figure out whats going to
hit the racks about six months
in advance. Brighter. Espe-
cially for men. Your lime
greens, your purples, fuschias.
Years and years and years
ago, in the 50s and 60s, thats
what the men wore. They wore
pinks. They wore colors in
bottoms, especially. Then we
got to a point where it was just
very drab bottoms. (Were)
kind of coming out of that.
Scott showed off some col-
lared mens shirts. You didnt
used to see colors like this, in
this lime, hot pink, and then
these belts, she says as she
thumbs through them.
Theyre wild and crazy.
Plenty of womens blouses
spied that day sported bright
hues, color blocking and bold
prints, such as animal-in-
spired.
Another hot commodity:
keeping cool.
We hardly carry any cot-
ton or any cotton blends,
Scott says. Moisture-wicking
fabrics have been proven to
be cooler. Theyre more
breathable, more lightweight.
The material, which sports
polyester, frightened some
members at first glance, she
says. But once they tried it. ...
All you do is wash this, throw
it in the dryer, hang it up.
Thats it. Not a thing has to be
done.
Jack Jeffcoat, a country
club member, says hes been
sold on the moisture-zapping
poly for nearly a decade.
A cotton shirt here in July,
you have to wring it out, Jeff-
coat says. Its just way too
hot. But the technology and
what theyre doing nowadays
with clothing is crazy.
One foot first
Footwear runs the gamut
from traditional golf shoes
with the flap of fringe to light-
er athletic shoes with bursts of
color.
The movement tends to be
more modern, trendy and
lighter, to try to make them
fit more into the parameters
than they used to.
The traditional shoes re-
main on the scene for the die-
hards, though. Some shoes
sport removable plastic
spikes, which can be replaced
every three to four months.
Theyve now come out
with sandals for ladies in the
golf shoe, Scott says.
Accessorizing
Golf bags are lightening up
and adding some pizazz, with
some of the womens bags
weighing in at 4 to 6 pounds.
Years ago, you wouldve
never found a bag that light,
Scott says, adding the accesso-
ry used to weigh 8 or more
pounds. Even for the men,
(theyve) done it somewhat.
Theyve got some beauti-
ful color combinations.
And dont forget to top off
your style with a hat and
protect that head.
Options vary from caps and
visors to big, floppy hats.
David McCracken wears a PGA shirt and Fairway Green pants at Suntree Country Club in Melbourne.
MALCOLM DENEMARK/FLORIDA TODAY
Continued from Page 1E
Golf
H
ilary Lassoff was
hooked the first time
she swung a golf club at
age 15.
I started hitting balls in
my backyard, Lassoff, 23,
says of the sport she played in
high school. I absolutely
fell in love with it. I
was the only girl on
the boys team.
The Philadel-
phia native went on
to attend Hank
Haneys golf acad-
emy in Hilton Head,
S.C., her senior year.
It led her to Florida Tech
in Melbourne, where she
played all four years.
But Lassoff felt something
was missing a sense of style
for the younger set.
We dont have awesome,
boisterous loud clothes that fit
well, says Lassoff. Ive al-
ways had this thought to do
womens golf clothes. Because
I wanted to fill that void of
18-to-35 demographic of wom-
en golfers.
Her senior year at FIT, the
business marketing major
pitched a business plan as a
class assignment. Lassoff
decided she wanted to go full
steam with it after graduating.
Her business goal?
To create a movement for
women in the game of golf,
Lassoff says. If you can kind
of take off and show people its
not that stuffy, khaki, tight
game. Its a
fun game
you can go
out and enjoy with friends and
enjoy all your life.
Sometimes women,
theyre scared to get into the
game, because its a pretty
male-dominated sport. They
dont like the clothing, they
just dont feel welcome. As we
grow and we build, we can
create that movement to grow
the game. And if you
grow the womens
game, you grow the
industry as a
whole.
Lassoff incorpo-
rated Life of A
Golfer in February
2013, received her
bachelors degree in
May that year, and
moved back to Penn-
sylvania to pursue her
ambitions.
Lassoff and her team found
some overseas vendors, and
she received her first samples
in mid-January.
Its literally fresh out of
the oven, she says. Now, shes
talking up her brand at golf
shops and colleges. Im going
to be down in Florida this
month to test the market.
The line includes about 20
styles: polos, bottoms, jackets,
sweaters, vests and a couple of
belts, Lassoff says. Bottoms
boast a four-way stretch. Shes
shunned the pure polyester
trend, opting for 100 percent
soft pima cotton polos. Tradi-
tional pinks and blacks get the
boot in lieu of vibrant or-
anges and cool minty blues.
Everythings really nice,
but simple, she insists. Cool
and loud.
Lassoff says she designed
styles that have wicking and
wrinkle-free capabilities for
multiple uses. To be the per-
fect, slimming fit and com-
fortable.
You could play a round of
golf ... and then you could go
run a marathon after, Lassoff
says of the pants. Super light,
but extremely flexible.
Prices are projected to be
middle ground, starting at
about $70 for polos, $90 for
pants and $100 for sweaters.
Products should be available
for purchase by December or
January.
Golf is a mental sport in
itself, and its a tough sport,
and youre out there for a long
time, Lassoff says. So if
youre out there and you feel
uncomfortable and restricted
in your swing, youre not going
to play (well), youre not going
to perform. Getting that per-
fect fit, which is what I want to
hone in on.
Contact Paulson at 321-242-3783 or
spaulson@floridatoday.com.
FEMININE SPIN
College player
designs styles
for women golfers
Goal is to fit 18-to-35 demographic
By Sara Paulson
FLORIDA TODAY
Paris Henley polo-style shirt is matched
with Boston-style pants. FOR FLORIDA TODAY
LEARN MORE
Check out the Life of a Golfer Look
Book at loaggolf.com
VIDEO
Hilary Lassoff talks about her business
venture at floridatoday.com.
Contact Paulson at 321-242-3783 or
spaulson@floridatoday.com.
Lassoff