What designers send down the runway each season dictates what you wear the next. Even if you’re not glued to LC:M updates, fast fashion retailers are, and the moves pulled by luxury names quickly materialise on the high street. But not all trends are born equal.
Some of this season’s big-hitters – wide-legged trousers, roll necks and military green, for example – we’d recommend investing in. Others, it’s worth sitting out. Unless you fancy deleting a season’s-worth of Instagram snaps in six months’ time.
1. Bright Orange
Orange has been threatening a comeback for several seasons. From Katie Eary’s orange-infused range of neoprene sweats, to Kit Neale’s all-over orange ensembles, AW15 is, according to fashion’s powers that be, the time to channel your inner RAC man.
Trouble is, bright orange is almost unwearable. Unless you’re blessed with a Mediterranean complexion and possess a wardrobe stacked with anchoring neutral shades, it’s a hue that plays as unhappily with your skin tone as the rest of your outfit.
Instead, steer subtle. Shades of rust and burnt orange still look fashion-forward and evoke plenty of autumnal warmth, but are much easier to wear. The future’s not bright.
The Alternative: Darker Shades
House of Fraser AW13
If it’s vaguely utilitarian and unisex, then it’s on the agenda for AW15. But if androgyny isn’t your shapeless bag, swerve this season’s slew of boiler suits. That goes for dungarees too. They may be comfortable, but it’s a nod to the 1990s resurgence that too quickly becomes a Fresh Prince head roll.
If you want to mirror top and bottom, match your fabrics but offer some contrast in colour. Darker jeans with a stonewashed denim jacket drags the eye upwards – rather than turning you into an amorphous mass – but links your textures.
If you’re after that unbroken silhouette thing, then know a tucked-in denim shirt, which obeys the same colour rules, is more flattering than a workwear onesie.
The Alternative: Double Denim
Scotch & Soda Amsterdam Blauw AW15
First your outerwear got levelled up. Then your trousers. Now designers have even inflated what wraps around your neck, taking the scarf from chill-fighter to quick-deploy picnic blanket. It’s warm, we’re sure. But it also makes you look like you’re playing dress-up in your dad’s wardrobe.
If you’re going to wear a blanket, it’s better to make like Clint Eastwood and cut a head hole in the middle than drown in it like Lenny Kravitz. Trade up from bulky fabrics to ones that punch above their weight; a slim cashmere scarf will keep you warmer and won’t emulate the Honey I Shrunk the Kids ray.
The Alternative: Cashmere Scarf
Loud Checked Tailoring
Fashion is cyclical, so you should be beyond shock at trends that rise like Lazarus, no matter how deep they were buried. But even though Topman Design decided to intern the checked suits of 1970s porn producers in a pet cemetery, that doesn’t mean you need to embrace their reanimated corpse.
Not that you need eschew checks entirely. Deploy them subtly – think a tonal grey Prince of Wales check over hornet yellow, or a chalkstripe windowpane check on navy, rather than lime green – and you tweak your officewear into something less fusty. Rave-inspired colour clashing might be back, but it’s still best left for weekends.
The Alternative: Muted Checks
Drop Crotch Jeans/Trousers
If you’re lucky enough to boast the body and bank balance to wear head-to-toe Rick Owens, then we bow to your gratuitous trouser fabric. If you’re just rocking dropped-crotch trousers and not the full street ninja aesthetic, then we question why you think the adult nappy is a strong look.
The oft-overlooked tapered cut offers much of the dropped crotch’s benefits, without intimating that you’ve soiled yourself. It’s refreshingly roomy for blokes with big thighs, but who still want the streamlined silhouette that skinny- and slim-fits offer.
Wear yours precisely as you would streamlined options – just beware trying to smarten them up too much as the cut’s inherently more casual. Your dress code should never be: ‘rugby dinner formal’.
The Alternative: Tapered Cuts
Levi’s CT Jeans