There was a time when womenswear ruled over the runways of Fashion week, but that has changed. Menswear is going through a massive evolution and like Goethe once said; No two men are alike, different temperaments will apply in different ways. This year’s menswear AW15 is about celebrating the beauty and versatility of the male physique. There was a dash of everything, from van Assche’s deconstruction of formal menswear, Vivienne Westwood’s stunning and artful air of Englishness, to Neil Barrett’s contemporary moss green tribute to youth cultures- but mostly there was innovation.
Summarising some of our favourites of the runway
Dries van Noten showed refreshing modernity with strict horizontal lines and sliced sections, for the man of subtle sophistication. Maison Margiela ruled at textures, showing an outspoken variety of smooth panelled calf leather trousers to knitted tinsel jumpers, letting the materials – and particularly the way they were juxtaposed – do all the talking. Paul Smith showed a gentle and timeless collection including long-line coats and subtle patterns on luxurious wools, keeping the graphics simple and allowing materials to flow naturally.
Kris van Assche showed a playful collection, transforming formal menswear in to fun and accessible wearables. The collection included green & grey-patched turtlenecks that broke the stillness of grey trousers, dress shirts fused with misplaced zippers on color patched nylon and abstract patterned suits. Thom Browne showed a powerful and theatrical collection of impeccable English tailoring worn by a bunch of veiled victorian mourners. There was a blackout of fishnet and lace, top hats and fedoras- velvet jackets, and straight-cut skirts, emphasised by statement accessories like a leather turtle handbag, adding a fun twist to the classic aesthetics of the collection. Lanvin’s runway was the stage to understated luxury. Lucas Ossendrijver sent models down the runway in a collection that balanced roughness and delicacy- expressed through gauzy cashmeres, wools and black leather. The luxurious idlers of Lanvin wore seventies inspired, high wasted flaired trousers, oversized shirts, overcoats and sweaters. There was a deliberate feeling of “unfinishedness” to the collection; hems on trousers left trailing and white dashing off on a coat, like a tailor’s chalk marks.
The high-waisted flaired trousers are making a comeback and the (business) suit, as formal wear, is going through a colorful evolution. Another element that didn’t go unnoticed is the Man-skirt on the runway this season. The seventies element was visible in a raft of collections, but many had youth cultures, history, glam punk or current society matters at the source of their inspiration- carried by the idea of renewal and the future. The question remains, are men- and moreover is society, ready to embrace these bright new ideas? I imagine the streets to be a beautiful place, when they do.