5 Ways To Channel AW14’s Blue Trend
It has become somewhat of a ritual that during every fashion week there is an ‘out there’ colour which dominates the runways and confirms itself as the hue of the season. From vibrant oranges to in-your-face greens, it’s fair to say almost every colour has had its day.
However, after a fairly vivacious couple of years, things seem to have settled down and gone back to basics, with blue garments pushed hard within AW14 collections. A colour that all men will already own and feel comfortable in, blue – whether in shades of sky, cobalt, navy or aqua – is a masculine, easy to wear hue that any guy can pull off.
With this in mind, we’re set to break down five key pieces that you can use to effortlessly channel one of AW14’s biggest colour trends, while providing you with a few examples of how to wear them…
On The Runways
Blue dominated the global fashion weeks, coming in every shade and form imaginable. From statement blue outerwear at Burberry Prorsum and Brioni, to sky blue separates at Prada and Gucci, to statement knitwear at Louis Vuitton and Topman Design, there was something for every type of dresser.
Yet FashionBeans’ favourite look came courtesy of Hardy Amies, which paired a razor sharp checked navy suit with a petrol blue rain coat and dusty blue suede monk-straps for an effortlessly refined take on tonal dressing:
1. Blue Blazers
A must-own garment that can be dressed up or down, the blazer is one of the most effective ways of wearing the trend. Ideal for those who like their clothing to be a mix of both contemporary and classic, a blue jacket will provide you with a fail-safe option that is capable of adapting to multiple scenarios.
When it comes to choosing the right shade of blue for you, we suggest taking into consideration how and when you will wear your new purchase. Of course, the navy blazer is a year-round essential that deserves its spot in any capsule wardrobe, but it’s a bit safe and the majority will already own this staple.
That said, if you would prefer to stick with what you know, why not consider a patterned navy blazer this season? If you stick to a classic motif such as windowpane or Prince of Wales check, this jacket will cement itself in your formal rotation for many more years to come while offering a subtle differential that will separate your look from the crowd.
If you’re looking for a similarly versatile blazer that can be worn for almost any occasion but has more of an individual feel, we would recommend one in a petrol blue shade. Slightly bolder, without pushing your boundaries too far, it can be combined with everything you would usually pair your navy jacket with, from slim beige chinos and indigo denim to grey flannel trousers.
Those looking to make more of a statement or who are in search of special occasion jacket can consider shades of cobalt, aqua or sky blue. All three of these options look extremely contemporary and are sure to garner attention. Just remember to keep the rest of your outfit stripped-back and neutral in order to allow your blazer to take centre stage.
- Topman Mid Blue Flannel Blazer
- Topman Selected Homme Logan Blazer
- Asos Slim Fit Blazer In Jersey
- He By Mango Garment-dyed Blazer
- Topman Blue Textured Oxford Skinny Fit Blazer
- Boglioli Slim-fit Unstructured Woven-wool Blazer
- River Island Blue Double Breasted Blazer
- Next Bright Blue Italian Wool Cotton Jacket
- Wool Rich 2 Button Houndstooth Print Jacket
- Notch Lapel 2 Button Suedette Twill Jacket
- Wool Rich 2 Button Tailored Fit Check Jacket
- Ted Baker Theon Check Blazer
2. Blue Roll Necks
Trending again for AW14, the roll neck has shaken off its stuffy connotations and is now worthy of a place in any modern gent’s wardrobe. Whether worn to dress down your formal attire or smarten up your casual wear, this timeless and sophisticated piece will add a sense of chic to any cold-weather look.
Available in a variety of weights and fabrics, opt for lightweight merino wool/cotton styles if you want something smart and refined, or chunky wool designs if you’re more of a casual dresser.
To create your own outfit, try using a thin gauge version in place of your shirt and tie during the working week, switching to a heavyweight cable knit roll neck and tweed trousers combination at the weekend. To complete, add brown brogue boots or loafers and you’ll be set to take the streets by storm.
So which shade of blue should you opt for? Well, classic navy tones are more appropriate for the office or pairing with tailoring, although a striking aqua or electric blue roll neck can help breathe life into our often monotonous formal wardrobes. Try layering one underneath a dark charcoal suit for a considered contrast that strikes the right balance between statement and professional.
When it comes to casual looks, on the other hand, anything goes – bold shades and even patterns are fair game.
- Jack & Jones Jumper Roll Neck
- Asos Merino Roll Neck Jumper
- He By Mango Turtleneck Wool Sweater
- Topman Navy Roll Neck Jumper
- Roll Neck Jumper
- Selected Jumper With Roll Neck
- Etro Cashmere Roll-neck Jumper
- Burton Cobalt Blue Roll Neck Jumper
- Beams Plus Roll-neck Wool Jumper
- Chester Barrie merino Roll Neck
- Next Roll Neck
- Drumohr Cable Knit Roll Neck Sweater
3. Blue Legwear
Perfect for those who aren’t quite ready to embrace colours of a more vibrant nature, varying shades of blue will help brighten up your existing legwear collection without pushing you too far out of your comfort zone.
Jeans are, without question, the easiest way of getting on board the trend, especially with the amount of washes available on the current market. Light blue and stonewashed styles offer a ready-made alternative to your trusty indigo versions and can be paired with every staple you currently own – just bear in mind that the lighter they are the more casual they look, therefore you should avoid combining them with true formal attire.
For sharper dressers, a textured or checked pair of navy trousers would make a considered addition to your formal wear collection, especially in seasonally-appropriate fabrics such as wool or tweed. With these materials offering a natural mattifying effect, it will allow you to opt for lighter shades without sacrificing their refined feel.
Alternatively, if you want to make more of a statement, consider a pair of chinos in an alternative hue such as sky blue or turquoise – they aren’t quite as out there as other popular shades like red, orange or yellow, but will still make yours stand out from the sea of beige and navy chinos.
Whether you opt for trousers, chinos or jeans, fit is just as important as the colour you choose. To get it right, our rule of thumb is to keep them slim through the leg and tapered at the ankle. If you already own a selection of blue legwear (which you probably will) and you’re not completely happy with the cut, take a trip to your local tailor and ask them to make the required alterations. Remember, badly fitting trousers are one of the most common fashion mistakes that men continue to make.
To create your own outfit, try pairing your new blue chinos/jeans with an unstructured blazer and brogues when heading for a night on the town, switching for a roll neck and boots combination for lunch with friends.
At the other end of the scale, if you invested in textured wool/tweed trousers, try juxtaposing these rugged, heritage styles with a sharply-cut grey Prince of Wales check blazer and pink dress shirt for the ultimate town meets country aesthetic – perfect for dress-down Friday or a date in an upmarket restaurant.
- He By Mango Slim-fit Bleached Wash Tim Jeans
- He By Mango Check Wool-blend Suit Trousers
- He By Mango Slim-fit Canvas Chinos
- Topman Blue Indigo Ultra Skinny Trousers
- Allsaints Nishiko Iggy Jeans
- Reiss Maurice Slim-fit Twill Jeans Blue
- Asos Slim Chinos
- Topman Tmd Pale Blue Wool Skinny Trousers
- Asos Skinny Jeans
- J.crew Broken In Regular-fit Cotton Chinos
- Michael Bastian Regular-fit Corduroy Trousers
- Boglioli Cotton And Cashmere-blend Corduroy Trousers
4. Blue Outerwear
Your top layer throughout autumn/winter and the item that people often notice first (along with your shoes), it’s important that you get your outerwear right.
As previously reported, there is no one style that stands out this year – everything from double-breasted overcoats to parka jackets made their way down the runways at the global fashion weeks. This means that the silhouette you choose will come down to personal preference and the time of year.
Every man should own a versatile transitional jacket that will see them through the end of summer and into autumn. The ideal version should finish around or just below the waist, allow you to layer multiple pieces underneath without becoming stifling and offer protection against biting winds and unexpected rain showers.
Key silhouettes include the fisherman jacket, cropped mac, unlined parka, padded field jacket or heavyweight bomber in something like waxed cotton or wool. Each and every one of these designs is available in multiple shades of blue, so keep in mind your current wardrobe and pull the trigger as soon as you find your perfect style. Then wear it with everything you own! It really is that simple.
As we progress into the depths of winter, you’re going to require something slightly more rugged and practical. Wool overcoats, hardy duffles and down-filled padded jackets are worth considering, with each versatile enough to be worn with everything from your suits on the morning commute to jeans and trainers at the weekend (see our lookbook below for proof).
In terms of colour, you can’t go wrong with timeless navy, especially as it is still underused for outerwear in comparison to other neutrals. Yet as this item will only be worn outside, why not look to make more of a statement this year? Electric blue, cyan and turquoise shades will inject life into a tired and dreary winter wardrobe, instantly reinvigorating your look. Be bold.
- Rains Jacket
- Carhartt Anchorage Parka
- He By Mango Corduroy Appliques Quilted Jacket
- Ben Sherman The Harrington Jacket
- Gloverall Mid Length Duffle Coat
- Selected Home Iconic Fishtale Hooded Parka Coat Mazarine Blue
- Hackett hockney Mac
- Canada Goose Chilliwack Coyote-trimmed Down-filled Bomber Jacket
- Next Blue Single Breasted Mac
- Ps By Paul Smith Lightweight Wool And Mohair-blend Bomber Jacket
- Hackett London Holborn Quilted Jacket airforce Blue
- Loewe Leather Biker Jacket
5. Blue Accessories
Every style-conscious male knows that the details make the difference and accessories add the perfect finishing touch to any outfit.
Although there are many to choose from, as we edge closer to winter, those accessories that actually serve a purpose when tackling the cold – think hats, scarves and gloves – are what you should be prioritising, rather than superfluous pieces that will overcomplicate your look.
For inspiration, take a look at Y-3’s AW14 runway show (above), where the brand chose to use a simple blue scarf within their all-navy outfits to give the look a sense of vibrancy.
When it comes to putting together your own outfits, though, why not go in the opposite direction by using a contrasting coloured accessory to enliven your ensemble?
For example, an electric blue scarf layered over the top of a charcoal suit would give a contemporary twist to a classic commuter look; a petrol blue tie would add a punch to your white dress shirt; while a navy blue beanie or snapback would complement your brown leather jacket perfectly.
- Reiss Champ Knitted Silk Tie Mid Blue
- He By Mango Polka-dot Silk Pocket Square
- Herschel Settlement Backpack In Petrol blue
- He By Mango Herringbone Scarf
- Reiss Reno Diamond Textured Socks Light Blue
- Asos Beanie Hat With Patch
- River Island Tartan Blue Scarf
- Ted Baker Kimyay Leather Holdall Bag
- Ralph Lauren Merino Wool Gloves
Although it may be this season’s colour of choice, perhaps the best thing about blue is that it will never go out of style. Regardless of the weather or season, blue remains a sensible and fail-safe choice that can be easily incorporated into any modern man’s wardrobe.
But now we want to hear your thoughts, so let us know what blue pieces you will be investing in this season, and how you intend on wearing them, in the comments section below…