Jun Takahashi may or may not have discovered a solution for fashion. Takahashi has managed to create a collection that merges streetwear with athleisure and luxury. His Fall 2018 collection for Undercover is a major example of what many design houses should aspire to do.
The designer showed Undercover in a big white tent with clear plastic walls in the center of Paris. His fashion was in the very middle of things and not bouncing around the edges. Takahashi took much inspiration from college, as that is a time for experimentation.
Takahashi has figured out a way to blend all the elements of street style, comfort, youthfulness, nonchalance and cool, and he turned them into clothes that can be related to by anyone. He didn’t do too much and chose establishment over rebelliousness but synchronized the two in such a way that it worked out for the better.
After every fashion show, there’s always the circulation of which trends will take the extra step into the fashion world. After Paris Men’s Fashion Week, a question was asked: do our shoes need their own pair of shoes?
Chinese fashion brand Sankuanz thinks so. Its design team sent a model down the runway wearing high top sneakers that never really touched the runway.
“They’re transformable sneakers that have an outer layer of protective sandal that you can enter Velcro into and you can strap them on or off,” Sankuanz publicist Courtney Wittich described.
The shoes really look like big-cushioned, rubber Birkenstocks with added Velcro straps you add to your already existing shoes.
“I think they’re going to be really popular,” Wittich said. “I mean, you know, the streets are quite dirty and people want to protect their shoes, especially if they’re paying a lot of money for them.”
The shoe sandals are expected to be sold for around $355 when they become available in August.
“You can walk totally normal in them and it gives you an extra layer of protection and then also height,” Wittich said.
The concept isn’t far off from what the company’s image is nor from the layering trend that is happening in today’s fashion world.
“So far we haven’t heard anything about a third layer generation, but if we hear about that we’ll let you know,” Wittich said.
Attending a Thom Browne show is an experience. It is not just the clothes that attendees admire as they strut down the runway, but it is the story that Browne puts behind each show he organizes. For his spring 2015 menswear collection, Browne was inspired by the movie ‘Tron.’
In Paris, 20 models donning plastic masks stood in rows of five. They were wearing gray tailored suits as they silently waited for the show to commence. As the show began, two guardsmen marched out in wool-suit armor. According to the New York Times, after the guards followed the models, who were split into two groups, those wearing puffy jackets and trousers, and those strutting sharper, spikier shoulders.
Browne staged a competition. The competition was between man and machine.
Browne commented, “It would be too easy for us to use Star Wars.”
Every show that Thom Browne puts on is just that. A show. Besides the beautifully crafted suits, there is always a deeper message that Browne hopes the audience takes with them. Many of the shows give off a haunting vibe, as if the set is something that you could imagine in your worst nightmare.
Although Browne has said, “they all lose in the end. That makes man a two-time loser.”
Fabric blocking and patterns come together in this collection. Wool and nylon make an overcoat that is a very modern take on a timeless classic. Having a four button design takes you back some years and then using nylon as the main sleeve fabric moves you to the future some years too. Redesigning the notch lapel was a great touch, by folding over the collar with the extra wool exposed gives the notch lapel a new and third dimension that isn’t seen in today’s suits or coats. Another design concept is the loose thread stitching of the pants and jackets, by doing that it seem as if the items aren’t fully sewn. It’s just loose extra material that adds dimension. A lot of the designs also give the impression of being in a forest because of the stitching patterns that resemble tree barks. The various textures and fabrics that are compiled are true experiments and futuristic designs. But coming next season the future will be here.
Inspired by the ability to have a unisex collection and multi-functionality most of his designs are able to be worn by both males and females. That is exactly how the collection started, with a woman coming down the runway in a blue leather pea coat with black bubble prints and matching pants. Then the guy wore the same style dinner jacket. Same materials and having the exact same design just with a different cut. A lot of his collection was made with that intention. Being able to interchange clothing between the sexes and if not interchanging then just matching together. Imagine arriving to a special occasion with not just matching your tie to the dress and vice versa. But having the same style patterns and designs. It doesn’t even have to be the blue color, it can be one of the other pieces like the suede two piece suit with the pleated suit jacket both available for him and her. Matching wasn’t the only attraction in this collection, it was the use of different leathers and patterns that include the aforementioned bubble pattern also variegated rugby stripes, tapes and the use of a snakeskin design both with fabric and patterns on matching jackets and pants.
This collection does have both a rock and an elegant flare because of the pants. They are skinny pants that have horizontal tears starting at the thigh and going below the knees. They are however transformable into nighttime wear because each tear has an attached zipper. So if you don’t want the tears to show then just zip them up giving you have a perfectly un-torn pair of pants that can compliment your dinner jacket. Functionality and versatility are keys to this collection. Items can be made both formal and casual within seconds while being wearable by males and females alike. Next time, go anywhere with matching Rynshu jackets and pants with one person wearing the pant tears open and the other zipped up. Then after some time switch the styles around and see the reactions. Both people will have a laugh and a great time showing off their personal and unique style even if the looks were swapped.
Formal, retro, old fashioned are the words that comes to mind for this new collection. The designs are very modern and formal, with the colors of brown and navy being the old fashioned. Consisting of dark fabrics with bright contrasting accents while having all the staples of relaxed formal attire. Packet with various Shetland crew neck sweaters and pea coats both double breasted in a 4X2 Belstaff style, and ones with jigger zippers and buttons as well to provide a more modern and sleek look and feel. Using various shades of brown, hounds tooth and glen plaid designs in the same piece on multiple coat styles to showcase that a single design can transfer over to various products. Then varying navy blue with white accents to highlight and contrast the different fabrics that are used.
Fall and winter are the seasons when it gets dark early, but with the Cerutti brown combinations even a normally dark color is varied by the various design patterns. It would be no surprise if his collection would be used in “The Great Gatsby” or another box office blockbuster like “American Hustle.” A staple in relaxed formal wear is the cable knit sweater, which is shown complimented in the collection by a white striped dress shirt with its collar contrasting the navy crew neck Shetland sweater itself. The best design of the night had to be the dark gray pea coat with eyelet fabric patterns in the underarms and wishbone pattern throughout. The use of this pattern is new idea, going away from the widely used and also popular patterns of herringbone, hounds tooth, and basic plaid designs. The wishbone pattern shows a different style while still maintaining the class it deserves. Cerruti has not only brought the autumn and winter feel to this collection, he also made it possible for anyone of any age to wear it. Whether it’s for comfort or style these classic and unique looks were popular generations ago and will be just as modern for generations to come. If I could, I would use that wishbone design to wish for this collection to stay timeless.
When you want a fairly relaxed collection that has all the necessities to stay warm, then Melinda Gloss has you covered. Their theme this season was nature and forest tones. Whether it’s a two tone color blocked pea coat, or the nature green wool pea coat with shoulder epaulets, looking casual and staying warm is simple. They mix and match wool and cotton fabrics and color block the basic black, gray and various green tones. With wool patch pockets on the outside of a casual single breasted jacket and wool notch lapels for the casual and modern look and feel. Their main forest themed design is their olive faux-suede shearling lined coat with a gray rugby stripe below the collar. This jacket is actually reversible to a shearling coat with the faux-suede lining. This way you can always change your coat’s look throughout the day without having to go shopping again, because who wants to go coat shopping anyways?
The use of sports fabrics and designs makes this collection more like a sports wear runway. Bright colors and patterns that include green vertical stripes, orange diagonal stripes and leggings with almost everything imaginable. Now the leggings stole the show themselves. Ranging from various patterns to colors, they not only stood out from all the coats and sweaters but they were the focal point in most cases. Having their own designs, prints and variegated stripe patterns. Being this bright in the fall and winter is surely an art form. This collection is a form of Expressionist art even Kandinsky would be proud to attach his name to. That is if Kandinsky could splash his imagination on leggings and coats instead of canvases then he would have the 2014/15 Fall/Winter Galliano collection. Taking summer colors and combining them with fall designs like mock necks, turtle necks and crew neck shirts is a must have. Stitching both peace signs and mouse pointer icons onto various jackets that point to various directions is a sign of what’s to come. In the sense that you don’t really know where he will go next and the ride you will be taken on. You just have to have his leggings and running sneakers on to be completely comfortable and submersed in the designs. When stripes of various fabrics and patterns aren’t enough for the everyday fashion show, here come the jackets which include windbreakers made of satin materials that also have the usual varied stripes and are color blocked as well. The most appealing design after the expressionist style leggings, jacket and shirt is the harlequin pattern satin blazer. It combines a relaxed pattern with an exquisite material to bring home an otherwise sporty collection. When standing next to the right colors and patterns it can have a chameleon effect even though it will shine in a crowd. It’s the formal sports coat with a design that is sure to start the usual questions of who, where and how can I get one myself?
You see the inspiration behind the design front and center. The pink international basketball court inside a round fence. So the first thought is where is the ball? Then the models start walking out about a minute after the music starts and you find the basketball which you were searching for. It isn’t rolling around, or tucked away in some corner, it’s everywhere. The Givenchy designs are about basketball. From the fabrics used to the colors and patterns of the clothing, basketball is on his mind and now on everyone else’s. There aren’t any skinny pants here. Everything is loose fitted and relaxed. The materials are more sports related and are high quality sports attire. Loose fitted trousers with over-sized color blocked pocket appliques was what was noticeable right away and throughout the show. The colors fabrics and designs were all basketball related in some way. Even on a black leather pants and jacket combination the pants had brown basketball colored leather color blocked pocket appliques. Sticking with those colors there were numerous single rugby stripe appliques both to the biceps of shirts, sweaters and on the backs of various coats ranging from pea coats to puffer jackets. However bringing the true inspiration of basketball to the collection was that numerous pants, shirts and jackets had actual basketball prints on the sides and front and center. There were also abstract colors and design prints throughout the collection and they still reverted back to the basketball theme because either the colors were or it was an item like an abstract print tank top.
Givenchy also used fur in various ways throughout the collection and of course the fur was of brown and orange shades which by now we know reminds us of basketball. The fur pieces were used in various ways also including being wrapped around the neck resembling a towel, and a grey fur tank top with an orange, white and black outline. Everything here reminds us of basketball and that it is an international game. Nothing says that more than being an inspiration to a seasonal collection. This was best shown with a basketball print polo shirt with a mesh sweater made out of basketball netting nylon. That’s wearing what you love, and the love of basketball was the inspiration from the beginning.
There aren’t enough words to describe this collection by Lanvin. It’s really numerous collections in one season. It starts off with long wool coats with jigger snap buttons, and small but intense details like a zip off neck collar. You have the same style navy coat with a faux fur hood. A lot of items even meshed together especially the navy and light blue mesh sweater, with a green two piece two snap button suit with narrow notch lapels. Instead of the belt, there was a tightly wrapped piece of loose fabric in its place. If you don’t have to be professional this could definitely work for casual Fridays, and definitely for happy hour. The collection then shifts to a more striped feel. Suits with blue, and pink chalk stripes. Paired with contrasting navy blue and pink tops. The final part of the collection is what I call the museum phase. It uses simple grays and blacks, but inside all those colors are prints from different fabrics like leather and satin. Taking a gray short sleeve snap button up shirt and applying a satin gray sideways facing mask by stitching it onto the shirt and double stitching the sleeve. Having that attention to details and varying fabrics. In the end it’s all about color blocking. Pairing pink with navy, hunter green with browns, and light greens and grays. Colors and collars are two words that I kept coming to mind over and over again.
This is what the gentleman wears. Their interpretation of formal and professional attire is outlined in this season’s collection. Taking otherwise basic clothing and designing various patterns and prints to form a more casual look is what formal is becoming nowadays. Take a two piece suit, use the jacket to pair with jeans and you have a casual night time look. In Valentino’s case, take a cream colored pea coat and remove the buttons to get their new casual pea coat. Works the same way for warmth on a non-windy day but now it just looks and feels more relaxed and casual. The same goes for their navy and gray rugby striped design. It’s almost like an accessory to your everyday clothes. Providing the look of a pea coat, half the functionality and double the casualness. The sense of color is never lost even on a gentleman.
Wearing a wool burgundy two piece suit is always as classy in a professional setting as it is relaxed away from the cubicle. A little more risqué is their two piece camouflage herringbone wool suit, whereas as original as it is there has to be no fine line for a dress code to be able to pull this off. But once it’s on the cameras will not only find you but you will be looking for them as well. Herringbone patterns were a staple in this collection. Used in everything from suits to coats and even as partial designs in combinations on various pea coats. Going from relaxed to formal and back to relaxed was the route of this collection with basic duffle coats in cream and blue colors. Gray and cream pea coats that had owl and hawk prints starting with the wings on the sides and the body of the bird stretching to the back of the coat and if there was no design print then the there was a varied type of vent on the jackets back ranging in size from waist high to a full shoulder height vent that almost separated the coat and made it a formal cape. Valentino is all about the luxury materials and designs and nothing says that more than the use of purple leather in a double breasted pea coat. With shoulder epaulets, a button appliqued chest flap, belt buckle wrist epaulets and to finish off the look gray wool lapels with the purple leather collar and a rear horizontal shoulder vent. The most formal and yet casual collection comes from one of the top designers. If casual Couture is the new “it” then “it” is already here.
How can this little piece of fabric shoved into a pocket be one of the hottest trends for the FashionMR today? Men have discovered that monotony is over. The proof is the numbers… According to the latest addition of WWD Men’s Week that came out on February 13th of this year, “Men are investing in themselves and their personal style more than ever, and are focused on how they are expressing themselves” (Brown p.1). Juxtaposing women’s and men’s apparel sales, The NPD Group Inc. claims though still a smaller slice of the industry men’s picked up steam and jumped 5.3% or $59.5 billion in sales last year.
The pocket square is a significant piece going into the everyday wardrobe. Just like socks, it can add a little flair, a little playfulness and attitude to a solid basic suit. GQ has said, “The littlest things make the biggest difference” (2013 p. 1). I get asked a lot how do I wear a pocket square, how can I match it to what I’m wearing? My rule of thumb and what I tell everyone that asks is that there is no correct way. For example if you’re wearing a solid colored dress shirt with a striped tie… it may be nice to offset it with a floral or paisley pocket square. If the tie has blue and grey in it, choose a pocket square that draws out one of those two colors. The possible combinations are endless and that’s what makes fashion so enjoyable; one day something is relevant and the next day it gets modified to something bigger and better.
Dark and raw describe this collection in a couple of words. Much like the full length forest green wool shawl collared robe that’s been finely stitched with a horizontal pattern and wide herringbone patterns on the collar itself. Then there is black wool extra wide crew neck sweater with extra material that was napped on the shoulders and arms to give the basic sweater a differentiating design, and style. Also a big part of the collection is asymmetrically designed including the faux suede and shearling single breasted jacket with a faux fur lining. If this collection isn’t unique enough there is one piece here which is all that one would ever need to survive the whole winter season. That is the black leather and black shearling lined oversized coat. The shearling lining completely comes out from underneath the leather jacket to show itself off, and to keep you warm throughout. Technically it has a notch lapel, but it is so wide, that it is more like an enormous leather and shearling flap to keep you safe from the elements. This is the only jacket you will need all season, it is warm with great stitching details including flat square cuffs, with elbow and shoulder detail stitching. So when you want to brave the elements, this collection has you covered from head to toe, usually with just one piece of clothing.
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