Steve Jobs on His Issey Miyake Black Turtlenecks: 'I Have Enough to Last for the Rest of My Life'

Steve Jobs Maroon Turtleneck - H 2011
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Steve Jobs Maroon Turtleneck - H 2011

When Apple employees nixed a corporate uniform, its co-founder had the designer make him more than 100 black turtlenecks.

Immediately after Apple co-founder Steve Jobs’ death, St. Croix, a Minnesota clothing company, claimed that its black turtlenecks doubled in sales. And it offered to donate $20 to the America Cancer Society for every turtleneck sold.

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But wait just a doggone minute. Turns out Jobs was no off-the-rack dude. He had his turtlenecks specially made for him by a very well-known Japanese designer named Issey Miyake. In Walter Isaacson’s new book titled Steve Jobs (due out in two weeks and excerpted on Gawker), he writes about Jobs' early-‘80s Apple corporate uniform idea -- inspired by the practical uniforms designed by Miyake for all the Sony employees.

When the staff balked at wearing Miyake's nylon vests, Jobs asked Miyake to make him some of his black turtlenecks that he liked. Those turtlenecks and his 501 jeans became his uniform until the day he died.

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Issacson writes that Miyake made Jobs more than 100 sweaters. And Jobs actually showed them to Isaacson, all neatly stacked up in his closet.

"That's what I wear," he told Isaacson. "I have enough to last for the rest of my life."

Sadly, he was right.


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