The recent explosion of pattern and print reflects menswear’s embrace of a bolder, braver approach to style. Throughout previous seasons, the prospect of dressing with real confidence and flair has been firmly brought to the table.

Spring/summer, of course, has a reputation for bringing out the vibrant side of the industry. Be it colour or print, the brighter months seem to signal a more vivid palette and an overall less conservative approach. Designers and brands alike have sought to integrate this strong personality into the classics that form the traditional backbone of the capsule wardrobe.

This year, it’s the turn of tailoring to undergo a seasonal makeover. The rise of the statement suit as a major trend for SS13 is the earliest example of this audacious approach. From bold block-colour blazers to those with a healthy dose of print, menswear has taken a timeless piece and put an of-the-moment twist on it.

Three Ways To Wear: Print Blazer
  • Anchor With Neutrals – A print blazer is one of the ultimate statement pieces. However, the contrast of the print, when compared to the classic nature of the piece, can make it appear intimidating and almost unwearable. Tone down the boldness by neutralising the piece with simple basics that won’t clash or fight with the blazer.
  • Pattern Mixing – With the seasonal surge of prints, being able to mix patterns effectively is a much needed weapon to add to your style arsenal. Our article on the subject is a one-stop guide to mastering the art and increasing the versatility of your new, on trend blazer.
  • Approach With Confidence – When all is said and done, the print blazer is a piece that requires confidence. Despite cementing itself as a go-to statement piece, without the confidence to carry it, you’ll find it seems, in fact, the exact opposite. Likelihood has it that if you’re in two minds about wearing something splashed with print, it will rarely see the light of day. Our advice? Approach with confidence and never look back.
Outfit Inspiration
Men’s Print Blazer Lookbook

Men's Printed Blazer Lookbook

uniforms of the dedicated aw12Simons autumn Catalogue 2012sarar ss13lbm 1911 ss13barneys aw12asos ss13Shanghai Tang ss13SARTO aw12paul by paul smith ss13
Look One: Statement Suit

If you aren’t a daily suit wearer, consider a printed option for those occasions that you do need to dress up – the suit can also be utilised as separates on a day-to-day basis, giving you three potential statement options to choose from.

A floral suit is a street style photographer’s dream. When worn alongside a staple white shirt and navy knitted tie, the print is left to do the talking – and it does a lot of it.

The finishing touches should be just as muted and simple as the shirt and tie. Grey suede double-monks are a good option as they are different without being overbearing. The grey pocket square works with the shoes and similarly the neutral colour doesn’t threaten the dominance of the suit:

  • Asos Smart Shirt With Button Down CollarAsos Smart Shirt With Button Down Collar
  • Topman Multi Floral Skinny BlazerTopman Multi Floral Skinny Blazer
  • Drakes Knitted Cotton TieDrakes Knitted Cotton Tie
  • Reiss Yacht Plain Linen Pocket Square GreyReiss Yacht Plain Linen Pocket Square Grey
  • Topman Mutli Floral Skinny TrousersTopman Mutli Floral Skinny Trousers
  • Grenson Ellery Grey Suede Monk ShoesGrenson Ellery Grey Suede Monk Shoes
Look Two: Easy Pattern Mixing

There’s little need to shy away from shirts with personality just because your blazer is designed to be at the centre of your ensemble.

A gingham check shirt looks great alongside a sparsely printed jacket. The print and pattern manages to avoid any clash and, whilst there is something going on in both pieces, there is not enough to detract from either and cause an unsightly mess.

With the main attraction out of the way, the easy bit is neutralising the top half. Timeless, versatile grey chinos or trousers do this better than any. Brogues work as a smarter option for this look whilst desert boots and jeans are another option worth considering for a slightly more casual approach:

  • Etro Gingham-check Cotton ShirtEtro Gingham-check Cotton Shirt
  • Asos Slim Fit Blazer In Embroidered PaisleyAsos Slim Fit Blazer In Embroidered Paisley
  • Allsaints Pipe ChinoAllsaints Pipe Chino
  • Reiss Clements Classic Brogues BitterReiss Clements Classic Brogues Bitter
Look Three: Smart-Casual Option

A check blazer (or even a full suit) is a viable way to adopt this trend and will have a longer shelf life.

Work with separates to cement a slightly more casual approach to formal wear. A check blazer and neutral trousers is a solid combination, especially when joined by a simple shirt and emblazoned tie.

Finish off with penny loafers for the perfect Friday work attire:

  • Burton Light Blue Tailored Fit ShirtBurton Light Blue Tailored Fit Shirt
  • Canali Kei Houndstooth Check Linen BlazerCanali Kei Houndstooth Check Linen Blazer
  • Brooks Brothers Crest Embroidered Tie 154906Brooks Brothers Crest Embroidered Tie 154906
  • Paul Smith Shoes & Accessories Printed Silk Pocket SquarePaul Smith Shoes & Accessories Printed Silk Pocket Square
  • Raf Simons Tailored Wool-mohair TrousersRaf Simons Tailored Wool-mohair Trousers
  • Asos Penny Loafers In SuedeAsos Penny Loafers In Suede
Men’s Printed Blazers
  • Allsaints Punchbowl BlazerAllsaints Punchbowl Blazer
  • Topman Navy Stamp Skinny BlazerTopman Navy Stamp Skinny Blazer
  • Allsaints Kohler JacketAllsaints Kohler Jacket
  • Asos Slim Fit Blazer With Sugar Skull PrintAsos Slim Fit Blazer With Sugar Skull Print
  • Universal Works Blazer With Paisley PrintUniversal Works Blazer With Paisley Print
  • Blue Printed Spot JacketBlue Printed Spot Jacket
  • Carhartt Terra Cane Camouflage BlazerCarhartt Terra Cane Camouflage Blazer
  • Diesel Blazer Jristare Nylon Hawaiian PrintDiesel Blazer Jristare Nylon Hawaiian Print
  • River Island BlazerRiver Island Blazer
  • Sisley Suit Jacket – OlivSisley Suit Jacket - Oliv
  • Topman Multi Smudged Skinny BlazerTopman Multi Smudged Skinny Blazer
  • Topman Navy Printed Floral BlazerTopman Navy Printed Floral Blazer
  • Vivienne Westwood Floral-print Denim BlazerVivienne Westwood Floral-print Denim Blazer
  • Gucci Unstructured Jacquard-woven Cotton BlazerGucci Unstructured Jacquard-woven Cotton Blazer
  • Kenzo Reversible Camo Jacket 147652Kenzo Reversible Camo Jacket 147652
Final Word

Positioned alongside a wardrobe of timeless basics, the print blazer is a versatile and wearable piece that will inject a touch of personality and flair into any ensemble. Whether employed as a statement or smart accompaniment to an on trend outfit, the emergence of a bolder sartorial movement this season is sure to raise a few eyebrows.

With this in mind, we want to know:

  • Will you be investing in a statement blazer this season?
  • Or will you go one step further and opt for a full suit?
  • How will you be styling them?
  • Or do you prefer you tailoring to remain classic and timeless?

Let us know in the comments section…