Okay, alright… Let’s get something out of the way before we begin: we’re all dickheads at FashionBeans. We’ve got the passes, we’ll be at Fashion Week, we’re part of the problem.
But at least we have the self-awareness to realise that Men’s Fashion Week, which kicks off for the fifth year running in London this weekend, is as much theatre as it is the serious business of fashion. Case in point: the elderly man wearing a pearl-encrusted pollution mask, or guy wearing Eddie Munster shoulder pads or the hordes of photographers actually taking these people seriously.
If you’re going to be there, use what follows as a kind of checklist for the D-list celebrities, angry editors and endless bloggers – what’s a collection of bloggers, anyway? A school? A gaggle? An unemployment? – who will all be out in force. See you on the front row, yeah?
Self-taught, aggravatingly young and fully aware of his immense power in the world of ‘influence.’ The blogger is constantly uploading himself to nine different social media platforms, suffers crippling RSI in his typing hand, and has no idea how close he is to being murdered by ‘proper’ fashion editors – men and women who have sacrificed their health, happiness and personal life to get to the top of the media, only to find that they now have less pull than someone who communicates entirely in emojis.
The Faux Hooligan
Young fashion writer whose comfortable upbringing in Cobham has somehow resulted in him sporting a Borstal crop, lots of thin gold jewellery, a massive Henri Lloyd jacket, Reebok Classics and a general belief that he ‘knows how to handle himself.’ He doesn’t, hence falling completely silent and staring intently at the floor when confronted with that massive bloke who works as a buyer for a budget high street chain, has a really flat nose and a spray tan and used to be one of Luton’s ‘top boys’.
The Camera Magnet
No actual tickets, or job, or evident reason for being there, but he’ll invariably be lurking on the fringes in some eye-watering get-up (knee length vintage Raf Simons jacket, England away shirt from the Mexico ’86 World Cup, Gucci flip-flops and a neck brace) until some sort of deranged herd mentality causes 400 photographers to mob on him simultaneously as he theatrically ‘dabs’ for comic effect and bellows his catchphrase.
The D-List Celebrity
Always sat in seats at least 400 per cent better than those occupied by people who actually have some clout in the industry, despite having nothing more to his name than one series of Love Island, a failed pop career and two drink-driving convictions. Was paid to be here by some deranged booker, is constantly talking about launching his own line of underwear – or maybe a fragrance – and will later be seen lecturing a well-known influencer with some ‘home truths’ about the fickle nature of celebrity, before trying to bite him on the cheek and getting dragged out by the bouncers.
One of the few people who should actually be there. A mildly sinister, black-clad character who always dresses exactly the same, always looks impeccable, never has tickets for any event (but still waltzes in), and generally gives off the vibe that he or she could have someone killed for wearing their turn-ups in the wrong way.
Like a modern update of Cerberus, the dog who guarded the gates of hell in ancient mythology, minus the three heads and the paws made of snakes, and with the addition of a massive clipboard, a hands-free headset and borderline personality disorder. Nothing will give them more pleasure than to block your entry.
Japanese Bertie Wooster
Immaculately-dressed Osaka fop who appears to have arrived on the business class flight from 1928, and has based his look on a minor PG Wodehouse character. Head to toe in bespoke tweed with a pair of mirror-shined brogues, he’s busy filing a report for his biannual magazine which consists of 900 pages of close-up photos of pocket squares. Also owns a flat-faced Persian cat who has two million followers on Instagram and earns more money in a month than you do in a year.
Not a dickhead for any particular reason, but makes us feel like one with his consequence-free existence and general air of youth and vitality. Take solace in the fact that the second fashion changes or he accumulates one percent of body fat, then his career is over. At least, that’s what we’re vainly telling ourselves.