This season offers stylish men plenty of winter wear to step into, pull on, shrug over and wrap around (their necks particularly) that they will most probably be hot under the collar by the time spring comes around. So they should probably decide to go a bit easy on their choices. Here is a run-up of a select few which caught the eye…
If a designer of Gabbana’s status says that this whole, crazy, mixed-up world is threatening to go medieval, we can take it that there is more than a grain of truth to his words. After all the visionary duo is known for its fantastic predictions depicted via their sought after designs. So they displayed their preference for a more idealized masculinity with images of thrones, suits of armour, crowns and even Norman kings on oversize sweats and saints on peacoats, leaving one speechless. Sharply tailored suits meanwhile came double-breasted, with nipped waist and lapels stitched flat to emphasize leanness.
"Illusion" was the title Armani gave his Emporio Armani collection. India has a term which would more accurately describe what the designer had in mind, ‘Maya’ or that which is unreal yet so real as to trick you into believing it is the real thing. So wool was treated to look like as astrakhan or moiré, the colour grey resembling stones was not just that, but much more. It was stone crushed to reveal those glittery minerals in it while pony and midnight navy and aubergine velvets added tactility. This is where one separates the men from the boys, so to speak (when it comes to designers). The maestro also offered a new silhouette: a shorter, fitted jacket, closing high with three or four buttons, matched to slim, cropped trousers with a ribbed cuff.
When you’re serious about your craft, you take care to master it in a way no one else can. And the famed Italian luxury fashion brand Zegna is proof of it. Established way back in 1910, it is now managed by the fourth generation of the Zegna family and remains in family ownership and is one of the biggest global producers of fine fabrics.
So when its head designer Stefano Pilati was trying to pin down the essence of the label as a prelude to his sophomore season for the label, two words came to him: city (Zegna's traditional suit-iness) and nature (the fibers that have made Zegna the world's most successful producer of fine fabrics). According to experts, his signature style is to marry the dressed-up with the dressed-down. So he ‘infects’ a suit and matching coat in a fine gray wool with a "galaxy effect" that makes it sparkle like moon dust, then takes a perfectly fine belted cardigan and runs a cartoon stegosaurus spine up its arms. After all, fashion is fun only when you play by your rules, right?
Quintessentially American, Ralph Lauren combines the suave with the preppy, the wild, wild, West with the worldly, to offer us classic-contemporary, must-have designs. There's a lot of freshness to Polo because of the way it's relentlessly recombined. Every preppy "classic," so to speak, is worn under, over, or stitched into something else. Cardigans are patched with tweeds, hand-knits embroidered, chinos overprinted. In fact the Polo world is set to be shaken again with the introduction of Polo womenswear this fall. Particularly eye-catching is a cardigan featuring bison motif worn over a traffic red shirt underneath and matched by a pair of weathered jeans.
If the model just happened to have long hair and it made you instantly recall the indigenous people of the US of A, the Red Indians, it was no accident we can be assured.