Diversity hit us in the 60s, Britain led the decade with style and it was finally okay to break wardrobe rules. Conventional became unconventional, dullness became colourful and it was the beginning of a rebirth in fashion. Supermodels such as Twiggy played an important part in leading women’s trends with the male’s transition not far behind – and what a better time to replay this revolution whilst men are now continuing to grow in prominence when it comes to style.
Numerous trends ran throughout the 60s, kicking off with the up rise of brighter colours which brought the two genders together and broke down any conforming men’s attire. A sense of patriotism was in the air by the mid 1960s as we took inspiration from our own. British rock bands such as The Who were leading us into mod subculture sporting the Union Jack along with the other mods who customised the Royal Airforce Symbol, therefore emphasising the importance of red, white and blue to achieve the atypical sixties style.
Designers’ clothes were mimicked and suits were becoming essential, as Italian and French designers were style icons for men who began to take a more sophisticated stance on style with their tailor-made suits. All these key trends from the era are going to be prominent in the upcoming Spring/Summer, due to what we have noticed on all the power design house runways during the preview shows this year. So let’s break down some of the key items you need in your wardrobe for the future seasons, and show you some examples which are already available now.
First of all, you should get your hands on some sixties accessories, as they are a versatile and easy way of incorporating the trend into your existing looks. As you can see Paisley is dominant, a pattern that was extremely popular during this decade supporting the psychedelic hysteria we should be embracing in the future. Silk scarves and ties are the key items here, as they can either inject some life – and a focal point – into a monochromatic outfit (paisley tie with a plain block colour shirt), or just give yourself a subtle and refined nod to the trend, by layering a thin silk scarf underneath your jacket or knitwear.
Funnily enough, the designers who do all the 60s era pieces the best are the Brits – Ben Sherman, Pretty Green and Paul Smith all have mod influences running throughout their collections each and every season, whilst Topman are the go-to for the high street pieces.
The popular choice for Mod outerwear is definitely the parka jacket, and this year we are seeing more variation than ever before. Shearling lined, cropped, military detailing and lightweight options are all available, as well as the traditional knee length hooded varieties made popular by the sub-cultures of the time and later on British bands such as Oasis and the Arctic Monkeys. With all the colour and cut variation we are seeing, this is now a really viable fashion forward piece that will definitely serve you well in a modern and up to date wardrobe.
Topman’s selection of Parkas are an easy and simple choice to take you back in time, and will keep you warm in Winter/Spring if you haven’t already bought your Winter coat. Renowned as a 60s iconic piece, if you take anything from the Mod’s style, this outerwear option should definitely be it.
It is definitely a time to stand out from the crowd, as boldness can be shown through colours as well as patterns. Once again, Topman have dared to feature the few pieces that give us a taste of the era, but the real winner is Paul Smith, who does paisley/floral and traditional British prints better than anyone in fashion. These can be incorporated so easily into your work wear and formal wear, without being over the top or outlandish. Would be a great way of separating yourself from the work force when paired with a dark suit and block coloured tie that picks out one of the base colours in the shirt.
Obviously the Union Jack flag and its colours are a very prominent print from the era, but we can bring this up to date with graphic tees and vests which incorporate it. Passarella Death Squad also show you don’t have to go traditional in order to nod to the trend and patriotism.
As we have established, the decade united the two genders and as we see velvet edging its way into mainstream women’s fashion today through the likes of Topshop, it should also become an essential fabric in the male wardrobe as well. ASOS have done well in pushing forward this notion in their blazers, which are available in a selection of colours as well as the great velvet Peacoat featured in Liam Gallagher’s Pretty Green Black Label. Bold colours work particularly well, and should be mixed with more subtle trousers and shirts in order to let it shine through as a statement item.
If you want a true velvet investment piece, look towards the D&G and Alexander McQueen collections, because the premium designers know how to make velvet look as sharp and refined as possible. Not one just for the party season anymore, this is a versatile fabric that can be worn most of the year in the UK.
If you need help seeing how to incorporate the trend then take inspiration from our lookbookers. See how they have used key pieces and incorporated them into more fashion forward looks:
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