Fashion designer Issey Miyake, creator of Steve Jobs’ iconic mock turtleneck, is launching a very similar shirt. Called the Semi-Dull T, it will go on sale next month for $270.
Although not exactly the same, the new creation looks close enough to the original to inspire a strong sense of déjà vu.
Miyake protégé Yusuke Takahashi designed the new shirt. Differences between it and the original include a trimmer silhouette and higher shoulders. Nonetheless, it’s your best chance to get a Miyake mock turtleneck. (The designer stopped making the original in 2011 at the time of Jobs’ death.)
The story behind Steve Jobs’ turtleneck
Jobs became inspired to wear his mock turtleneck uniform following an early 1980s trip to Japan, according to Walter Isaacson’s 2011 biography oft he Apple CEO. While there, Jobs asked Sony chairman Akio Morita why everyone in the company’s factories wore uniforms. Jobs learned that this was a way of creating camaraderie between co-workers.
Miyake created Sony’s uniforms, which Jobs loved. However, Jobs could not persuade his colleagues that an Apple uniform was a good idea.
As Jobs recalled, “I came back with some samples and told everyone it would be great if we would all wear these vests. Oh man, did I get booed off the stage. Everybody hated the idea.”
However, the process led to Jobs becoming good friends with Miyake. When the Apple chief asked the designer to create a one-off uniform he could wear, Miyake created 100 black mock turtlenecks for him. Jobs adopted the unofficial uniform when he returned to Apple in the late 1990s, and was rarely spotted without it from that point on.