In anticipation of the spring/summer ’18 menswear fashion shows, it’s a good time to unearth what we truly think of the changing landscape of #menswear. The time when menswear was just suits and casual wear is long gone, but even with the evolving idea of menswear, where do we land?
#Menswear has evolved so much over the last two decades, but the way I see it, it has evolved so much more over the last 5 years, that’s virtually unrecognizable. With the growth of upcoming and young designers from London to the hallowed institutions in Paris and Milan, menswear is all encompassing with limits that are practically undefinable.
A good place to start understanding menswear is to see where we are now and work backwards to know how we got here and possibly predict where we might be heading. In a time where Puma x Fenty, Vetements and Balenciaga are such strong tastemakers in the global sense of fashion, menswear too sticks to evolves. When an urban label like Supreme has had a massive collaboration with Louis Vuitton spanning the whole season’s collection, it certainly is a nod to the times we are in.
Over the past 5 years we have seen the change in menswear where suits in fashion industry and regularly revolutionized to a point where we now equate them with the same value as hoodies and track pants. For his Fall 2013 collection, Kris Van Assche created a collection quite literally blending panels of suits with hoodies. “The masculine wardrobe is extremely coded, and the new generation no longer wants to bend to these rules,” observed Kris Van Assche backstage after his show to a journalist at NowFashion. “I have confronted the codes to say that you can be who you want to be.”
(Kris Van Assche Fall/Winter ’13/14, courtesy Kris Van Assche)
Indeed, that’s the realm of menswear at the moment, to be able to serve a customer who does not want to be coded to the rules of menswear that date back decades. Even heritage tailoring houses like Canali, Ermenegildo Zegna and Berluti are in a time of renaissance where serving to a more discerning millennial customer-base has become increasingly important (given their incomparable purchasing power), and that’s where the need to invent and innovate comes from.
A$ap Mob – a rappers’ crew comprising of Quavo, Playboi Carti, Lil Uzi Vert, Frank Ocean and A$ap Rocky himself, recently accredited Raf Simons for being a token menswear designer who has altered the face of the industry since the 1990’s, a true revolutionary, in their recent song ‘Raf’. Never have we seen designers given this level of importance since Jay-Z’s hit single ‘Tom Ford’, which had more to do with a level of stature than with actual design.
With men’s fashion week season coming later this month, it’s a good idea to understand where we are at with men’s fashion and where we might be going in the coming season.
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