Milan fashion week has been and gone and delivered us the vision of men’s fashion for 2013 from some of the biggest names in the industry, including Burberry, Dolce & Gabbana, Prada and Calvin Klein. Throughout the event, the collections harkened back to traditional menswear silhouettes and patterns, helping create a look that is hyper-masculine yet refined, dignified and always in style.
Christopher Bailey set the tone for Milan with a show entitled ‘We Heart Classics’. Instead of taking the easy route of exploring the Burberry archives and churning out yet more classic trench coats (no bad thing), the collection showcased classic pieces that had been evolved through the use of new materials, detailing and shape – keeping everything fresh and certainly new.
This was something explored by multiple designers, with Jil Sander developing her own distinctive take on traditional overcoat design and Salvatore Ferragamo experimenting with leather.
There were plenty of other trends that were transposed onto these time-tested staples. Today, we run through the most prominent influences, in order to keep you ahead of the game this AW13.
From the beefcakes at Versace to the pastel boys at Prada, both had strength in what they wore – meaning that no matter your style, you can be bold and daring come AW13.
As is the norm at Versace, Donatella Versace continued her foray through maximalist prints and oversized, powerful clothing. It saw masculinity cranked up to the maximum but also luxury at its highest, with these bold, almost threatening outfits becoming something of desire and admiration:
Miuccia Prada offered a different stance – with the catwalk being surrounded by 1970s minimalist furniture, the collection had a sense of restraint yet oozed confidence.
It was a look that could have easily been created after a rummage through your father’s old wardrobe, taking classic 1970s shapes/colours and combining them together to create a statement in a refined way. This was power-dressing for the masses:
Depending on your own personal style, try and integrate powerfully coloured, patterned or cut pieces into your wardrobe this year. Less is more, so team these bold pieces with neutral staples to draw attention to the garment rather than create an altogether garish outfit.
Our favourite styles were seen at Prada, where the vintage check patterns reigned supreme. These type of pieces can make an effortless and subtle statement throughout the year and have a classic ‘mod’ appeal:
At Prada, Miuccia embraced the 1970s check once again but elsewhere, prints have also been returning to something much more timeless and restrained after the somewhat progressive and over the top designs of 2012.
Giorgio Armani took an art deco approach with an understated design of block colours, which were also seen at Jil Sander and Bottega Veneta. They resembled the aesthetic of the Henri Matisse cut outs, being both childlike in form yet beautifully sophisticated:
These strong geometric patterns should be the focal point of a look and their clean, minimalist approach should be extended to the rest of the outfit.
Simple black trousers and sleek shoes will provide the formal edge that complements a masculine patterned jumper beautifully – just look to Giorgio Armani for inspiration.
Umit Benan’s collection continued the theme of masculinity by looking at the hidden life of Milan’s graffiti artists, bringing a feeling of danger and letting him experiment with luxurious materials when applied to sportswear.
It was an aesthetic explored further at Calvin Klein, where formal sportswear was made with performance fabrics that deceived the eye – masquerading as something familiar only to be revealed as something extremely futuristic:
Integrating luxurious sportswear into your everyday wear can be difficult. The easiest way would be through a beautiful pair of trainers. Lanvin are the brand that currently sets the standard for high fashion trainers, which look just as good at the gym as they do paired with a simple jeans and t-shirt combination at the weekend. However, there are plenty of good high street and mid-priced alternatives.
In terms of casual wear, try adding just one or two key styles to your wardrobe this year – a sweatshirt or luxe hoody embodies the sports aesthetic, yet if you make sure they are fitted and constructed from high quality materials, they will not look scruffy when paired with other smart-casual pieces. For inspiration, see how Calvin Klein integrated traditional sportswear into more tailored looks.
Although it was disappointing that Burberry remained in Milan rather than backing London Collections: MEN, Christopher Bailey did not disappoint with his showcase.
The collection may have included the iconic Burberry coats and trenches, but these were created in a totally unique way – statement animal print and burgundy leather versions are just two examples of Bailey’s new playful and experimental approach to outerwear.
Dolce & Gabbana also added colour to their outerwear, putting romantic floral/paisley prints on their traditional overcoats, helping create a very modern yet reserved aesthetic:
The classic black overcoat is going to keep you looking stylish this autumn/winter and many to come. In terms of how to bring it bang up to date, the cut for AW13 is tighter as the coat becomes more nipped in at the waist – creating a strong shouldered silhouette and a powerful, masculine frame. In order to achieve this aesthetic, you are going to need to take your existing coat to your tailor.
Milan fashion week also encouraged us to be experimental with colour, print or fabric, as this is the season where the traditional overcoat is evolving into something much more contemporary:
Each season, the key accessories trends for men remain quite consistent – there is only so much you can do with a belt or bag after all. However, one that stood out at Milan fashion week was the emphasis on Bohemian inspired silk scarves and neckerchiefs.
This is a trend that has already seen some coverage on the pages of FashionBeans over previous seasons, but this year the sheer amount of designer’s finishing their models with louchely tied silk scarves or tight knotted neckerchiefs was apparent for all to see.
From John Varvatos and Gucci to Versace and Moschino, the silk scarf was included within a wide variety of looks, proving its adaptability and versatility:
Although the neckerchief is typically reserved for the spring/summer season, a lightweight silk scarf can be utilised all year round. Tie them high and tight like at Gucci and Diesel Black Gold during the summer and drape them nonchalantly around your shoulders or tuck them into your blazer during autumn/winter.
A silk scarf is a great investment for anyone looking to add character and individuality to their look. Feel free to go wild with your choice of colour and/or pattern – let it make a statement as the finishing touch to your timeless ensembles.
As the classics continue their resurgence, there has never been a better time to invest in a piece that will remain stylish for years to come.
Fashion is turning back to minimalism after its foray into the peacock world – however, this new age approach has left its footprint. Instead of peacock, consider wearing one off items of flamboyance; a patterned overcoat, paisley shirt, colour blocked jumper, silk scarf or simply a bright pocket square. Whatever it is, allow it to make a statement by muting the rest of your outfit.
So, what do you think? Do any of these emergent trends take your fancy and will you be investing now in preparation for the end of the year?
Let us know in the comments section.