COLOUR ME BAD
It must be hard for guys who like colour when the most adventurous you can get, without looking suspiciously circus-like, is khaki. This season, you can breath a huge colour-deprived sigh of relief, as colour is the huge must-have for the stylish man’s summer wardrobe. What is different between this and say the rave-look of the nineties, is colour has grown-up. As such, be it the humble suit, chinos and even formal shoes, smartwear is awash with colour. So, if you’re looking to up your wardrobe style-stakes with twisted sartorial – check out the new Colour Me Bad look.
Not since Miami Vice, have guys under 40 been assured they can pull off a orange blazer. Up until this season, you would think of a guy in bright tailoring as, oh how can I put this gently, a little bit of a silly man or seriously retro, someone like Ashley Cole, Snoop Dogg or Del Boy. However, on the spring summer runways, designers were very generous with their use of colour. Gone were the dull blacks and greys and instead, those traditional colours were mixed in with everything from citrus and scarlet to pastels and aquas.
Wintle sent dip-dyed pastel short suits down the catwalk at the MAN day, with crisp white shoes. At Lanvin, menswear designer Ossendrijver and creative director Albaz, partnered the jewel tones of the womenswear collection with its menswear line, incorporating chilli, jade, cobalt blue into the mix, with striking success.
Paul Smith injected sunglasses-worthy colours at his show, with bright formal and casual wear mixed in with shades of grey and tropical shirts. While colour-blocking was used from head-to-toe at Calvin Klein.
So guys the first step is not to be scared of colour, but rather embrace it. Men are learning to be braver with their colour choices, as well as experimenting with combinations and prints. Don’t just use colour in your sportswear, but add a bit to your everyday wardrobe. Just start with a flash of colour with your shirt or shoes, for a fun and brighter update on the humble suit. On the high street you’ll easily find an array of coloured leather shoes, shirts and accessories. Then when you’re ready to take it up a notch, start colour blocking with clashing colours. If you’re looking for inspiration, read The Gentlemen of Bakongo (image below). These are guys who truly know how to wear colour artfully and still look smart. Just remember it’s part sports-luxe, part Savile Row and four parts refined preppy – the ultimate deconstruction of classic formal wear… oh and a a sprinkling of rainbow magic, so you can always look on the bright side.
Gentlemen of Bakongo
I really recommend this book as a great read: