Jesper Parnevik was a PGA Tour fashion pioneer

By Jace Frederick
Published on

Jesper Parnevik shot a 3-under 69 on Friday in the first round of the 3M Championship at TPC Twin Cities in Blaine. That has him sitting in a tie for 20th place, four shots behind leader Glen Day.

More interesting on Friday was Parnevik's outfit -- a light grey shirt and pants combo and white hat -- one of the more conservative choices of his career.

Parnevik, a 51-year-old from Sweden, was a bit of a fashion pioneer on the PGA Tour. From his flip-billed hats to his wide array of color choices, Parnevik rarely looked like your traditional golfer.

"He was one of the first guys to really kind of break the mold," Peter Jacobsen said.

Parnevik recalled his first tournament, when his pants were so tight he could barely bend down to pick up his ball.

"People were really frowning on that stuff back then," he said.

That didn't deter him. Parnevik's dress code only increased his profile on the PGA Tour. The flip-billed hat became a trademark of sorts, to the point where a special version of the Ryder Cup hat was made for him with the event's logo placed on the bottom of his bill, so it would still be visible as he walked the course.

There was a short period of time during which Parnevik went away from the flipped bill, but there was an explanation for that.

"I just did the Lasik surgery and all that, so I was going to protect (my eyes) a little bit," he said. "But it wasn't no difference. I played worse with (the bill) flipped down, anyway."

Even on the Champions Tour, Parnevik continues to stand out. When he won the Insperity Invitational in Texas in May, he was wearing pink pants.

"That was probably the ... boldest thing I've ever done, to wear pink pants in Dallas," Parnevik said. "Even Hal Sutton told me, 'That's not a thing we do around here.' "

A few golfers seem to be falling in line with Parnevik's attire choices. Rickie Fowler has made a mark on the PGA Tour with his often fluorescent fashion tastes. Parnevik would like to see more players stand out that way.

"I think it's good to see," he said. "Any sport loves personalities and needs something different. (Fowler is) one that attracts the young fans with all that, so it's all good."

Parnevik said it might be a little easier for players like Fowler to stand out these days, with someone like Parnevik having blazed the trail before them.

"But it's still been a fun ride," he said. "It's good to have some fun on the course."

This article was written by Jace Frederick from St. Paul Pioneer Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.