The dust has finally settled. After the youthquake that was the spring /summer 2019 season, we have finally arrived to some clarity, direction and balance. As I have written in my previous menswear trend report, infatuating and capturing the youth's attention seemed to be the last season's manifesto, leaving a whole market segment of tailoring aficionados thirsting for more. Already, on the cusp of 2019, most of the houses took their chance on satisfying the omitted while trying to bring the concept of tailoring a bit closer to the Gen. Z. Fall/Winter 2019 brought with itself various attempts on reworking the aforementioned cornerstones of menswear fashion, with various degrees of success of course. Through history, various generations and decades, there has been a traceable evolutionary trajectory of tailoring, from wide fit of the 1950s, power suits of the 80s to the super skinny suits of the 2000s. For a while we haven't really had the "NEW" silhouette, a discovery which would shape the way we perceive dressing and how the garments are made. As Gen. Z is set to surpass Millennials as the most populous in 2019, fashion industry may have gotten a perfect chance to not only appeal to the youth but to start building groundwork of what tailoring will become, the aesthetic codes of the future which will inspire generations to come.
Marni Fall 2019 | Photo: Filippo Fior c/o Gorunway.com | courtesy of Vogue.com
One designer who has so successfully managed to find his own solution for this conundrum was Marni's Francesco Risso .The brand's latest menswear collection was a riot, literally. A real riot of energy, color and angst. Francesco took it to the streets and tapped into the current cultural zeitgeist, the uncertainty and apprehension, and decided to shed a light on, as the designer said:"atypical kids, extravagant and not diagnosable". Absolute Highlight was the way Francesco approached designing several pieces of knitwear, creating a decaying effect on some of the sweaters, revealing a Flinstoneish leopard print underneath. The collection had a heavy grungy feel to it, with a dose of loose fuzzy mohair cardigans and silky pyjama pants. Francesco latest offering started rather inconspicuously by brand's standards, opening look being an ocher oversized suit, a perfect build up for the psychedelic crescendo that would ensue. Sharply contrasting prints, in loud bright hues, were matched with such confidence proving why Marni is becoming a must see show on the menswear fashion week circuit. All in all this refreshing and directional take on a Marni man is making me anxious to see how Rissi's next attempt at toppling the establishment will look like.
Celine Fall 2019 | Photo: Filippo Fior c/o Gorunway.com | courtesy of Vogue.com
For the brand's inaugural menswear collection, Hedi looked to London , 80s and 60s London to be more precise, searching for inspiration in various musical subcultures through the eras, like the new wave or the ska boys, in typical Hedi fashion. The clothes themselves were a personal progress of sorts for the designer, as he ventured more into tailoring, into different cuts, especially noticeable in the way he went about designing pants. Skinny fit, Hedi's specialty, was traded in for a more relaxed, wider, tapered shape, a shape rarely present in his previous work. Even though the exploration of different silhouettes by the designer was a definite step in the right direction, it didn't feel like a step forward for the industry as a whole. No one should blame Hedi for going in his own direction, as he has the complete right to do so. Seeing different musical subcultures being dissected each season will definitely be a different sensory experience. Only 5 out of 66 looks were worn by people of color, a decision that feels incredibly archaic, especially in comparison with all the advances made in the representation of people of color, not just in fashion but all across pop culture. Hedi has a voice, a cult following that has steadily grown over the past 2 decades and an undeniable skillset for fashion design, and I hope he uses the platform he has to propel fashion forward, as he had done so in the past.
From left: Givenchy Fall 2019 courtesy of Givenchy | Dior, Valentino | Photo: Filippo Fior c/o Gorunway.com | courtesy of Vogue.com
Other highlights of the fashion month can be split in several distinct categories. Prada and Raf Simons once again proved why they are constantly on the radars of every fashion insider, delivering complex and interesting ideas, realized beautifully time and time again. Kim Jones of Dior and Claire Wright Keller of Givenchy have finally presented collections with strong sense of brand identity and direction, things we desperately need nowadays. Another unexpected surprise was the collaboration between Valentino and Undercover, a deal struck after Valentino's pre-fall collection, resulting in prints which appeared in both presentations and a joint VU logo, celebrating the artistic union between the two. With younger generations slowly but steadily usurping the status quo, fresh voices are starting to emerge, showing us what the new guys have to offer. We need to choose carefully who will shape the future of the fashion industry, now more than ever, and stand behind them, as we are only at the beginning of what will be a true sartorial revolution.
THE TIGHT FIT
For quite some time roomier, boxier silhouettes have dominated the catwalks around the globe, but fall winter 2019 brought up a convincing proposition for what modern day dressing could become. An interesting and straight forward silhouette, which elongates the figure and, when proportioned properly, could achieve a really flattering effect.
Streetwear has been a source of disruption and obsession among the creatives in the fashion industry for several seasons already. This infatuation was tamed a little bit compared to the previous years, but is showing no signs of stopping any time soon. Puffer jacket, streetwear's item of the moment, was taken to whole new outlandish dimensions, presenting quite a strong silhouette.
BACK TO BASICS
The latest season went down as a season of reworking the foundations of what we call modern menswear, and what's better than starting with the milestone of tailoring, the black suit. Many brands took their chance at reworking the classic, offering thought-provoking takes with distinct sense of direction, making the beloved staple of menswear wardrobe feel new and fresh again.
Grey has been a permanent fixture in men's fashion since the beginning of garment making, and on the start of 2019, look after a look exploding in various hues of the color proves that this shade won't disappear any time soon. This color has shown a dominant presence on the runways with several designers dedicating a substantial parts of their collection to it.
THE NIRVANA TRIP
Grunge has had a steady presence in womenswear through the recent history, but the sudden resurgence of the style in menswear fashion took the complete industry by storm. Vetements, Marni and Celine offered incredibly strong takes on the trend, with Vetements going an extra mile by recreating a T shirt worn by Kurt Cobain on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine.
RISE AND SHINE
Considerable extent of glossy and glitzy looks went down the runways in the past month, giving us one of the most exciting directions that fashion could head to in recent times. The widespread use of reflective materials, no matter what brands belonged to, shows the resonance the material achieved with the industry creatives, and with the fall/winter 2019 iteration of the trend, it was never easier to wear.
ON THE PROWL
Leopard print has after a long time made its presence known on the men's fashion circuit, bringing a surge of primal, feral energy to the global catwalks. The flashy print made turns under several highly distinct guises, displaying the versatility and the adaptability of the trend, resulting in highly covetable pieces that you will lust over in the following months.
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