Crittenden Rawlings was the founder of Crittendon & Co.

I first met Critt at Country Britches/Cricketeer when I worked for him as a rep in the 80s. I had the great benefit of listening to him on fabric, fit, and garment construction for many hours at a time. What a valuable education that was! This led to his wife Judy, a realtor at the time, selling me a home not far from them in the rolling Greenfield Hills of Connecticut. So I had the amazing good fortune to get to know Critt and Judy and their three girls. Critt was always full of stories of his life with four women: “Even the dogs are female,” Critt would say. Stories of how the teenage girls were constantly raiding his clothes closet of sweaters, knit shirts, even his patterned boxer shorts… “Nothing is sacred,” he would say. His wife Judy and daughters Alison, Anne, and Caroline were the absolute pride of his life.

Horses and dogs were also a big part of the Rawlings’ life. And country life was a big part of Critt. (Some of those Polo ads could have been filmed at the Rawlings’ home.) I remember once meeting a guy on an evening train to Connecticut from NYC who knew Critt. He talked about the horses and how much Critt loved the country life, but also the city life. “He likes to get a little shi#t on his shoes…but not every day!” I always thought this described him well. Returning to his beloved homeland Kentucky in later years was important to him. We visited them at their wonderful shop in Midway Kentucky — gorgeous horse country — a few years ago.

Dennis first met Critt at Norman Hilton in the ’70s and knew him over the years as his career progressed thru Country Britches and Polo and beyond. “Exceptional taste and understanding of the men’s and women’s clothing business,” recalls Dennis. “Truly amazing the breadth of his knowledge of fabrics and the clothing business in general. I always learned things when I talked to Critt.”

Critt and Dennis had something else in common. COLLEGE BASKETBALL. Critt was an ENORMOUS Kentucky basketball fan. Of course, a huge rivalry was Indiana Basketball and Coach Bobby Knight. This was often a conversation with my Indiana-born-and-bred husband Dennis. Basketball is a religion in these parts. Judy would often talk about how Critt yelled and hollered thru Kentucky basketball games and would get so upset, especially if it was a game against Indiana.

Critt was one of those unique individuals: his fun personality, his sense of humor, his love of life, his amazing creative talent, and his sense of style. You’d also know he was a Kentucky boy at heart when you saw him dance his “Kentucky Two-Step!” We know one thing: Heaven is much better-dressed now that Critt has arrived.

With love and admiration for a very special man,

Dennis & Joan Dann, Dann Clothing, Indianapolis