Introduction

There is one thing the modern, style-conscious male should never underestimate: the power of an accessory.

Whilst the majority consider accessories inferior to jackets, shirts or trousers, they are in fact one of the most important weapons in a man’s fashion arsenal. Not only can they inject any outfit with a touch of individuality, but their versatility means they can be used within a wide variety of looks, too.

Whether it’s a bold pocket square brightening up a dull-looking jacket, or a backpack to carry your daily essentials, a well developed accessory collection forms the cornerstone of any successful autumn/winter wardrobe.

With this in mind, today we pick out the key accessories all men should have on their radar for AW13 and beyond…

Bags

Once viewed as a convenient item to carry your necessary tools to and from work/college, the bag has gone on to establish itself as a key part of any capsule wardrobe.

Whilst there are many different options to choose from, this autumn/winter there are two key styles you should be considering:

1. The Document Holder

First up, a style that was an instant hit during the AW13 showcases at London Collections: MEN. The document holder (sometimes known as ‘the pouch’), as the name suggests, is not only ideal for carrying your work documents and pocket-sized essentials, but its slim silhouette makes it extremely practical.

If your day consists of endless commutes and you aren’t a fan of lugging around heavy baggage, this is the ideal companion for you.

It’s worth mentioning – due to its sophisticated and sleek nature – this type of bag is best paired with your smartest attire. A slim-fitting suit would be perfect; as would a button-down shirt, chinos and blazer combination.

When considering design, be sure to pick one that best suits your personality and style. If you like to stand out from the crowd, take a look at a printed option, such as Givenchy’s sought-after ‘Doberman’ version.

Alternatively, if you are a more reserved/refined dresser, a classic leather version, similar to those currently available at Reiss, would make a versatile and timeless choice.

Lookbook Inspiration

Men's Document Holder Lookbook/Outfit Inspiration

massimo dutti september 2013he by mango winter 2013massimo dutti NYC Collection Fall 2013reiss aw13he by mango aw13gant rugger aw13
Key Styles
  • Mismo Leather-trimmed Canvas Pouch 166442Mismo Leather-trimmed Canvas Pouch 166442
  • Valextra Logo Embroidered Document Case 148641Valextra Logo Embroidered Document Case 148641
  • Reiss Shredder Small Fold-over Document Holder Dark BrownReiss Shredder Small Fold-over Document Holder Dark Brown
  • Gucci Detachable Chain Handle Textured-leather PouchGucci Detachable Chain Handle Textured-leather Pouch
  • Allsaints Wyatt Document CaseAllsaints Wyatt Document Case
  • Balenciaga Creased-leather PouchBalenciaga Creased-leather Pouch
  • Allsaints Monument CaseAllsaints Monument Case
  • Comme Des Garcons Polka Dot-print PouchComme Des Garcons Polka Dot-print Pouch
  • Givenchy Doberman-print Leather-trimmed Canvas PouchGivenchy Doberman-print Leather-trimmed Canvas Pouch
2. The Backpack

If you are a man who carries around a lot of belongings daily, then the document holder is probably not for you. Instead, consider bag trend number two: the backpack.

No longer just for kids in the playground, this versatile and durable style of bag has developed into a practical essential for the modern gent. But, whilst the shape has remained the same for AW13, the styles have altered somewhat. This year’s must-have design comes complete with an attention-grabbing print.

Whether you choose Topman’s ‘Sprayground Bullets Deluxe’ offering or Penfield’s camo print option, the trick is to try something new and not be afraid to step out of your comfort zone.

However, when all is said and done, if you are not quite ready to make such a statement, keep it simple with a classic pattern, such as the muted floral pocket backpack available at ASOS.

Before you go ahead and invest in your new accessory, it is important to consider your current wardrobe. In comparison to the document holder, the printed backpack is best integrated into more casual ensembles; try dark indigo jeans, a button-down shirt, cable knit jumper and a pair of on trend hiking boots.

Lookbook Inspiration

Men's Backpack Lookbook/Outfit Inspiration

asos aw12asos aw12topman aw13matalan aw13scotch & soda aw12ted baker ss13
Key Styles
  • Topman Sprayground Bullets Deluxe Backpack Topman Sprayground Bullets Deluxe Backpack
  • Mi-pac 17l Backpak In Camo PrintMi-pac 17l Backpak In Camo Print
  • Penfield Marbleton Backpack In Navy Polka DotPenfield Marbleton Backpack In Navy Polka Dot
  • Mi-pac Plaid BackpackMi-pac Plaid Backpack
  • Asos Backpack With Floral PocketAsos Backpack With Floral Pocket
  • River Island Grey Aztec Panel RucksackRiver Island Grey Aztec Panel Rucksack
  • Penfield Riverside BackpackPenfield Riverside Backpack
  • Marc By Marc Jacobs Camouflage Houndstooth Padded Mesh BackpackMarc By Marc Jacobs Camouflage Houndstooth Padded Mesh Backpack
  • Herschel Little America Backpack In Chevron PrintHerschel Little America Backpack In Chevron Print
Hats
1. The Fitted Beanie

When it comes to head wear this winter, there are two main styles you should be looking to invest in. The first – and perhaps the season’s biggest accessory trend – is the fitted beanie.

FashionBeans icon Tinie Tempah is a major advocate of the style. The rapper often favours a brightly coloured option, which, rather fittingly, is perhaps the most popular design on offer for AW13:

Tinie Tempah Fitted Colour Pop Beanie Hat

In terms of styling, the world is your oyster. The hat’s slender silhouette ensures it doesn’t look out of place within smart-casual looks, whilst its relaxed nature means it will slot seamlessly into your current casual wardrobe.

If colour is not your ‘thing’, don’t worry, a neutral coloured design would work equally well. If you go down this route, consider a heritage-inspired style – cable knit and marled versions are particularly prevalent this season.

Lookbook Inspiration

Men's Fitted Beanie Lookbook/Outfit Inspiration

new look aw13burton aw13allsaints aw12marks & spencer aw13primark winter 2013Woolrich John Rich & Bros aw13
Key Styles
  • Asos Fisherman Beanie Hat With CableAsos Fisherman Beanie Hat With Cable
  • Slub Watchman Beanie Hat In RustSlub Watchman Beanie Hat In Rust
  • Asos Fisherman Beanie HatAsos Fisherman Beanie Hat
  • Topman Navy Cable Knit BeanieTopman Navy Cable Knit Beanie
  • Acne Miles Beanie Hat 163179Acne Miles Beanie Hat 163179
  • Allsaints Blake BeanieAllsaints Blake Beanie
  • Asos Tiny Beanie Hat 2 Pack Save 17%Asos Tiny Beanie Hat 2 Pack Save 17%
  • Allsaints Rugen BeanieAllsaints Rugen Beanie
  • Topman Green Lambswool BeanieTopman Green Lambswool Beanie
2. The Beret/Baker Boy Hat

If you are the kind of guy who likes to push boundaries and follow high fashion, then consider hat trend number two: the beret.

Featured heavily on the AW13 runways at London Collections: MEN, the beret is the latest accessory to try and force its way into the wardrobe of the everyday male.

For styling inspiration, look no further than the Agi & Sam and YMC showcases – both paired the accessory with a selection of thick winter tweeds and quilted gilets.

However, if this silhouette is a step too far out of your comfort zone, the classic baker boy makes a great alternative. Perhaps its best feature is its versatility; allowing the wearer to integrate it into both smart and casual looks with ease.

Try pairing yours with a chunky shawl neck cardigan, chambray shirt, selvedge dark denim and a pair of timeless brown brogues.

On The Runways

Berets on the YMC and Agi & Sam AW13 RunwaysBerets on the YMC (top) and Agi & Sam (bottom) AW13 Runways

Key Styles
  • Ymc Men’s Phaab Christy’s BeretYmc Men’s Phaab Christy’s Beret
  • Jeff Banks Designer Grey Checked Baker Boy HatJeff Banks Designer Grey Checked Baker Boy Hat
  • Christys Hats Grey Baker Boy Wool CapChristys Hats Grey Baker Boy Wool Cap
  • Ben Sherman Baker Boy HatBen Sherman Baker Boy Hat
  • Pure Wool Herringbone Baker Boy HatPure Wool Herringbone Baker Boy Hat
  • Christys Hats Brown 8 Piece Tweed Flat CapChristys Hats Brown 8 Piece Tweed Flat Cap
  • John Lewis & Co. Donegal Tweed Baker Boy Cap GreyJohn Lewis & Co. Donegal Tweed Baker Boy Cap Grey
  • Hammond & Co. Designer Navy Wool Baker Boy CapHammond & Co. Designer Navy Wool Baker Boy Cap
  • Borsalino Linen Flat CapBorsalino Linen Flat Cap
Socks

Whilst shoes are clearly the most important thing to put on your feet, socks can be equally significant. Injecting another texture or pop of colour via your socks helps set your look apart from the crowd – something the majority of men still fail to appreciate.

This season it is all about the thick woolly boot sock, which is usually seen peeking out of the top of worker/hiking boots. Not only do they keep your feet cosy, but their thick, textured construction will give your outfits a unique, seasonally-appropriate feel.

When considering how to style, look to combine them with clothes that share similar characteristics. For instance, a cable knit jumper and button-down shirt would be fitting for your top half, whilst on the bottom, hiking boots and selvedge denim references their rugged, outdoors appeal.

For added style points, and to fully show off your new accessory, we recommend tucking your jeans loosely into them.

Lookbook Inspiration

Men's Hiking Socks Lookbook/Outfit Inspiration

fashionbeans man september 2011louis vuittion pre aw13zara manclosed denim aw11closed denim aw11closed denim aw11
Key Styles
  • Asos 3 Pack Cable Knit Boot SocksAsos 3 Pack Cable Knit Boot Socks
  • Topman Black Ombre 2 Pack Boot SocksTopman Black Ombre 2 Pack Boot Socks
  • River Island Ecru Twist Cable Knit Boot SocksRiver Island Ecru Twist Cable Knit Boot Socks
  • Asos Boot SockAsos Boot Sock
  • Topman Green Black Twist Boot SocksTopman Green Black Twist Boot Socks
  • Asos Boot SockAsos Boot Sock
  • Topman Coral Washed Cable Boot SocksTopman Coral Washed Cable Boot Socks
  • Urban Knit Gib Rib Boot Socks Made In EnglandUrban Knit Gib Rib Boot Socks Made In England
  • He By Mango 2 Pack Flecked SocksHe By Mango 2 Pack Flecked Socks
Gloves

Gloves have forever been a winter wardrobe staple. However, whilst many will favour their trusty knitted/woollen versions, this season it is all about two styles: leather and driving.

The former are the most versatile and cold-weather-appropriate, due to their thicker material/construction and ability to be paired with both smart and casual attire.

The latter, on the other hand, are generally a lot thinner, which allows for greater levels of dexterity (particularly helpful during the morning commute), but often look best in sophisticated, refined ensembles – think a well-cut suit and elegant overcoat combination.

In terms of colour, neutrals will always be a safe bet and guarantee never to fall out of style. Yet slightly bolder hues such as burgundy, olive green and camel make a refined and subtle statement that can be just what you need to stand out from the crowd.

Lookbook Inspiration

Men's Leather & Driving Gloves Lookbook/Outfit Inspiration

j lindeberg aw13network aw13lbm 1911 aw13zara editions aw13h&m aw11Strellson aw13gant rugger aw13drykorn aw13he by mango winter 2013
Key Styles
  • Topman Selected Homme Leather GlovesTopman Selected Homme Leather Gloves
  • Reiss Thorman Leather Gloves MustardReiss Thorman Leather Gloves Mustard
  • Reiss Thorman Leather Gloves Dark BrownReiss Thorman Leather Gloves Dark Brown
  • River Island Black Quilted Leather Ri Popper GlovesRiver Island Black Quilted Leather Ri Popper Gloves
  • Dents Leather Driving GlovesDents Leather Driving Gloves
  • Allsaints Yield GlovesAllsaints Yield Gloves
  • Alfred Dunhill Perforated Leather Driving GlovesAlfred Dunhill Perforated Leather Driving Gloves
  • Dents Cashmere-lined Leather GlovesDents Cashmere-lined Leather Gloves
  • Merola Gloves Cashmere-lined Leather GlovesMerola Gloves Cashmere-lined Leather Gloves
Textured Ties

Whilst ties have, of course, always been an essential formal accessory, this year we are seeing a change in materials.

Predictable cotton and silk designs are being replaced by heavier fabrics such as wool, cord and flannel. These rugged textures suit the season perfectly, and allow the wearer to integrate them within a range of different outfits, from smart-casual to formal.

If a dressed-down look is what you desire, opt for one of the many wool designs now available and pair it with a button-down denim shirt, dark coloured trousers, a textured tweed jacket and brogues.

For something far smarter, choose a checked flannel tie and match with a slim-cut suit and solid shirt.

Lookbook Inspiration

Men's Textured Ties Lookbook/Outfit Inspiration

row 1 - image #1row 1 - image #2row 1 - image #3row 2 - image #1row 2 - image #2row 2 - image #3
Key Styles
  • Band Of Outsiders Corduroy TieBand Of Outsiders Corduroy Tie
  • J.crew Houndstooth Wool TieJ.crew Houndstooth Wool Tie
  • Michael Bastian Prince Of Wales Check Wool TieMichael Bastian Prince Of Wales Check Wool Tie
  • He By Mango Wool-blend Knit TieHe By Mango Wool-blend Knit Tie
  • Topman Light Blue Texture 5cm TieTopman Light Blue Texture 5cm Tie
  • Bespoken Contrast-tip Wool-flannel TieBespoken Contrast-tip Wool-flannel Tie
  • Asos Knitted TieAsos Knitted Tie
  • Asos Check Tie In DogstoothAsos Check Tie In Dogstooth
  • Asos Herringbone Check TieAsos Herringbone Check Tie
Printed Pocket Squares

Although the pocket square is nothing new, its popularity has certainly exploded over the past few years. So it comes as no surprise that brands have hundreds of options for us to choose from this AW13.

Key styles to seek out this year are bold, patterned versions that reference current key print trends – think florals, checks, Aztec/ornate, camouflage and herringbone.

However, before deciding upon your favourite, here are some key guidelines to take into consideration:

  • Don’t match the colour of your pocket square to your tie – this looks a bit too stiff.
  • Instead, try and pick out a colour in the shirt or tie you are going to wear. This links your whole outfit together and shows you pay attention to the details.
  • For beginners pattern mixing, make sure both the size and the pattern of your tie and pocket square are different. For example, a small polka dot print tie with a paisley pocket square.

For more tips and foolproof approaches, make sure you check out our previous guides on pocket squares and pattern mixing.

Lookbook Inspiration

Men's Printed Pocket Square Lookbook/Outfit Inspiration

angelo nardelli aw13jaeger aw13unknownhe by mango winter 2013he by mango aw13j lindeberg aw13
Key Styles
  • Topman Black Floral Pocket SquareTopman Black Floral Pocket Square
  • Beams Plus Camouflage-print Silk-twill Pocket SquareBeams Plus Camouflage-print Silk-twill Pocket Square
  • Topman Monochrome Houndstooth Pocket SquareTopman Monochrome Houndstooth Pocket Square
  • Drakes Floral-print Wool And Silk-blend Pocket SquareDrakes Floral-print Wool And Silk-blend Pocket Square
  • J.crew Double-faced Wool Pocket SquareJ.crew Double-faced Wool Pocket Square
  • Paul Smith Shoes & Accessories Houndstooth-print Silk Pocket SquarePaul Smith Shoes & Accessories Houndstooth-print Silk Pocket Square
  • Reclaimed Vintage Paisley Pocket SquareReclaimed Vintage Paisley Pocket Square
  • Italian Pocket Square In Bandana PrintItalian Pocket Square In Bandana Print
  • Topman Gold Baroque Pocket SquareTopman Gold Baroque Pocket Square
Final Word

Hopefully this brief guide has given you an idea of what accessories you should be looking out for this season, and how you can use them to give an added touch of style to an otherwise ordinary outfit.

All that is left for you to do is pick your favourite and let us know what it is, in the comments section below…