At this time of year, motivational quotes are ten a penny, so you probably don’t need any more. Tough luck though, you’re getting another: fail to plan, plan to fail. Wardrobe-wise this is the most solid advice you’re going to receive all year. Trust us on that.
Sure, you can be all spontaneous and hand your credit card to your gut, but unless you’re really shrewd or lucky, you’ll be saddled with buyer’s remorse and/or a bunch of stuff that doesn’t really go with much.
Worried? Don’t be. We’ve done the legwork to pull together a list of 14 trending menswear pieces that will get year-long wear and play nice with others. Happy shopping.
The end of last year saw the V-neck jumper make tentative steps towards a surprising but welcome return to the menswear fold. We’re calling 2018 as the year that the V-neck goes viral.
You don’t need to look like a Love Island reject in body shaming paper-thin designs though, as designers and retailers have started to embrace thicker gauges. Soft merino wool styles will make your 9-5 wardrobe more luxurious, while patterned versions or cricket jumpers have you covered at the weekend.
Field jackets suit practically everyone, but they’re not completely overdone, so the sooner you enlist one, the better. Outdoorsy yet compatible with the smarter end of your wardrobe, your cost-per-wear calculations should be favourable.
And like most of menswear’s military staples, this outerwear silhouette has got a Peter Pan-like knack for never getting old, so 2018 need only be the start of your beautiful partnership.
It’s been more than a decade since the introduction of skinny jeans, but they’re still proving hard for men to peel themselves out of, especially those who want the world to know that leg day did not get skipped. But now there’s – quite literally – room for more in your legwear collection.
You don’t have to go wide with your trousers (and under no circumstances will we tolerate bootcut) but 2018 calls for a straight-leg fit. Trust us, your wardrobe and circulatory system will thank you for it.
Vertical Stripe Shirt
Yep, Breton stripes are idiot-proof and have certainly done their bit to prevent summer descending into a god-awful orgy of pastel polo shirts, but for the year ahead, you should be recalibrating the direction of your stripes.
We’re not talking office-appropriate pinstripes either: think bold vertical stripes that would give Beetlejuice a run for his money – although, for that very reason, swerve the black and white look on this trend.
Flattering and colourful, in a seaside kind of way, this timeless motif is in line for a big summer.
Fashion hates ubiquity, so the inevitable backlash against the dominance of minimal sneakers saw ugly trainers become a huge trend in 2017.
We’d advise you to rein it in a little for 2018. You can pick up a pair of statement kicks (a chunky silhouette and/or multiple colours are very much welcome) that put the right level of YOLO on your trotters.
White denim is a people pleaser that anyone can pull off, said no one ever. Truth is, it goes wrong more often than it goes right, but with a few simple guidelines you can swerve the Johnny Borrel look and be on the right side of denim history this year.
Our cheat sheet? If you’re paler go for off-white denim. Under no circumstances should white jeans be skin tight. White denim shorts should finish no higher than mid thigh. And distressing or rips? Don’t even think about it.
We’d be extremely surprised if we saw pastels completely disappear from view this summer. We’re supporters of pale and interesting menswear, but pink? Well, it’s getting a bit passe.
The shade to plump for in 2018 is pale orange (or coral), which – when in T-shirt form – offers an easy way to advance your colour-wearing credentials without rehashing well-trodden ground. It also flatters nearly every complexion.
2017 was big news for seventies style, and while inevitably the mania will simmer down in 2018, its most versatile cast member – the corduroy trouser – looks set to stay put and boogie.
The beauty of cords is that you can go as jazzy or discreet as you like, but they’re never boring. Try rocking a navy needlecord pair for a stealthy spin or opt for wide wale brown cords to go full throttle on the trend.
Tailored Swim Shorts
For years, when it came to swimwear you could either have billowing masses of fabric or minuscule budgie smugglers, with most men opting for the former.
Thanks in no small part to Orlebar Brown and Daniel Craig’s Bond, swim shorts have smartened up their act and now come tailored to perfection. The high street has been quick to cotton on and in 2018 there’s no excuse for you hitting the water in a pair that balloon on impact.
Athleisure is the trend that just won’t get back in its (plyometric) box and go away. For us, it stands to reason: anything that looks good and is comfortable to wear is an instant keeper.
At this point the main challenge is keeping athleisure feeling fresh, which you can do (ironically enough) without breaking a sweat via some smart side-stripe trousers.
According to Pantone, the global authority on colour, 2018 is the year of 18-3838 – AKA ‘Ultraviolet’, a bold shade of purple. While we may not know the science of impenetrable number codes, we do know that ultraviolet’s reddy-brown cousin burgundy is undoubtedly more wearable.
Buy a burgundy jumper now to capitalise on your outlay: you can wear it through spring to add some much-needed colour to your cold-weather looks, and again at the end of the year when things start to get bleak again.
Look, we’re navy suit fanboys, and aren’t going to stand in the way of anyone slipping one of those on, but there is a world beyond timeless two-pieces.
Coloured tailoring (be it a pale stone or deep forest green) is being advocated by both high-street and high-end designers this year, which means you’ve never had so much choice. For the first time in a while, formalwear is fun – embrace it.
It’s been almost a decade since heritage menswear was done to death, so the time is finally ripe for it to have another outing in your wardrobe. If you want to make sure you’re rocking the Peaky Blinders look before hordes of others eventually do, we’d recommend a herringbone coat.
The logic? Throw it over a suit now for smart but statement-making style, and come next winter layer over sportswear staples for a more contemporary high-low feel.
There’s a footwear theme going on for 2018. Its mantra? Be bold. Not content with shaking up the sneaker world in 2017 with its chunky iterations, menswear’s going a step further by giving traditionally ‘safe’ Derby shoes a plus-size injection of personality.
How to pull of chunky Derbies without looking like a (literal and figurative) clown? Park them at the bottom of some smartly tailored navy or black chinos to temper their attention-grabbing antics.