The menswear shows have finally come to an end and brought with them a fresh set of ideas to reinvent a spring wardrobe. While the ruling era was definitely the 80s, it would be misleading to state that all the trends were borrowed from that decade since there were androgynous looks, contemporary take on military looks, oriental prints and patterns and the 90s nightwear trend. Instead of denim dominated looks, there were softer, more feminine fabrics like satin and lace that created hype and a palette of lush green stood out the most and was used with base fabrics like black, white or grey. In addition to block patterns, all-white looks, pinstripes and animal prints, there were flora and fauna motifs and hybrid silhouettes. The team of FFT has broken down five of the most crucial trends that would be shaping menswear in the summer of 2016…
Last season saw a tremendous influx of Japanese culture in terms of the wrapped silhouettes, robbed belts and general styling. This time around menswear has embraced the trend through the patterns and symbols being used through prints or patchwork. Oriental florals were fused with sportswear and nightwear silhouettes that were modernized through metallic prints in some cases. Cherry blossom, Ukiyo type prints and Chinese collars were well represented at Dolce & Gabbana and Gucci. The oriental influence was shown in blatant references at Alexander McQueen with a printed rob coat and a waist tie belt, tailored suits at J.W. Anderson, in addition to the raised platform shoes that the male models were wearing. It was also added in subtler forms, modernized takes through print and silken fabrics at Antonio Marras, Astrid Andersen and more.
Romancing the past
Designers chose to revolve around the 70s-80s-90s era but the most common one throughout all the fashion capitals were the fierce eighties. There weren’t just the customary animal prints and plaid suits, but also the oversized silhouettes and the over-the-top styling. Paul Smith went for a contemporary look for his collection where the sleeves of shirts, ties and belts were all skinny and the jackets were oversized, especially the metallic suits and the dotted patterns. Philipp Plein incorporated tailored pieces with a punk look, using ample zips, patchwork, padded shoulders, whereas, Xander Zhou used wide lapels, leather and the typical 80s trench coat. Versace looked at the rockstar legacy, using that inspiration for models being dressed in cropped trousers and printed bandanas. Sacai put plaid zip ups, graphic T-shirts and logos on her runway.
Gender neutral styles
This trend does not include summer florals and vests but a well-rounded gender bending look which involves everything from a handbag to platform shoes. Man skirts were popular on the runway, with Kanye West making them mainstream, they were seen in black and white with slits on the sides for ease of movement on the runways of Damir Doma and No. 21, whereas, Versace went for a shirtdress and a scarf tunic which was thigh-grazing. Gender neutrals looks were seen at Missoni, Fendi, Gucci in the form of ruffles, lace shirts with floral patchwork, butterfly patterns on knits, pussy bow shirts/blouses, in addition to the androgynous silhouettes. Etro made their models carry tote bags and Missoni induced femininity through printed scarves.
Layering the look
Layering, which is usually associated with the fall season, owing to the dropping temperatures was adopted for the spring collections in the form of lightweight and flowing silhouettes, the fabrics were breezy and not slouchy. Designers layered utility jackets on top of suits or top coats over blazers which seemed practical. Then there were cropped trousers, linen bombers and knit outerwear that lacked any type of structuring. Hardy Amies played around with technical pieces – a panelled jacket worn over a singlebreasted checked suit, while, Lou Dalton layered windbreakers over a shirt, on top of a T-shirt. Saint Laurent used bombers and lightweight jackets over thin shirts and tanks, while Givenchy presented a sombre collection with pullovers over mesh tops and T-shirts.
Bombers were a popular category and remained to maintain their foothold as the most popular outerwear for another season, they were present at Christopher Kane, Alexander McQueen, Christopher Raeburn, as well as, more contemporary designers like Oliver Spencer, Katie Eary and Astrid Anderson. They were seen covered in heavy prints – ethnic and graphic, leather, suede and panelled but what stood out the most were the satin bomber jackets. Saint Laurent used graphic imagery and bioluminescent colours, while Valentino stuck to oriental blooms in summer shades like sunshine yellow. Louis Vuitton’s bombers were not only patchworked with birds on them, but they gave an appearance of being two bombers in one, with a layering effect. Dries van Noten’s jackets were an ode to Marilyn Monroe, Moschino’s had an intricate jacquard effect and Valentino’s was patchworked too.