"fine stripe repeated as a figure on cloth," 1882, from pin (n.), on the notion of long, slender, and straight, + stripe (n.1). Characteristic of the uniforms of many baseball teams from 1907 and after. Suits of pin-stripe cloth being the conventional garb of the mid-20c. businessman, the word came to be figurative of "executive" by 1958.
updated on June 12, 2020