Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Style: Five Trends That Should Stay In 2014
Almost a month into 2015 and I don't see any abate in the following five trends in menswear. Some things are better left alone but others need to be considered carefully especially because of their long term effects as opposed to their present status. I have been mulling these five trends and I think for me they really stand out as overdone, run into the ground, and totally unnecessary. These are just my observations, however, I encourage us to engage and debate on whether you agree or not. I think the conclusion I have drawn from my own observations on trends in general is that those that add value and don't will both survive or become obsolete. Here are my top five:
1. Flower lapels
I think they are overdone, they've really become an affectation, and a costumey one at that. What started out as a subtle, stylish accessory has evolved into something so ubiquitous that every gent has to have one. It's gone as far as some government ministers wearing them and that is highly inappropriate, especially in as far as menswear dress code is concerned. I think flower lapels have their place such as on special occasions, as an everyday accessory makes them highly pretentious. I didn't have a problem with flower lapels five years ago because so few men were wearing them. Nowadays, however, is a whole different ball game because it's almost as if it's become a standard uniform. The flower lapel, in my opinion, gives the boutonniere a bad name.
2. Shirt collar peaking through polo-neck
I don't know how this started but it strikes me as a Eureka moment for the person who discovered it. This is one trend that needs to be left alone because it looks so wrong. I just can't imagine gentlemen walking around looking like this. Maybe there's a gent who insisted on wearing both items on a particular day and finally came up with the combination. But it is totally unnecessary because it looks like a detachable collar is stuck in the polo-neck because the shirt is not visible anywhere else. Honestly, just because the Italians are doing doesn't mean it's style worthy.
3. Pocket square in waistcoat
A pocket square, in my opinion, was initially intended to adorn the breast pocket of a jacket and nothing else. A pocket square in any pocket of a waistcoat is highly misplaced. The clean line of the waistcoat is broken by the addition of the pocket square and this spoils the overall aesthetic. It's just too much and it shouldn't be done because it screams trying too hard. Dishonourable mention goes to a pocket square in a denim jacket.
4. Men in skirts
This has been seen on the runways and I hope it doesn't go further than that and Kanye West. There are subtle and gradual trends that are being introduced to emasculate men and skirts is one of them. And who else to peddle this trend and give it world wide appeal than Kanye West and mass media. As much as menswear rules can be broken, the classics can never be eradicated. A man in a suit will always be the standard. I say subtle because it starts with skirts, then men in heels, then a little make-up, lipstick, and then before you know it men will be in full on women's clothes, looking like women. There has to be a distinction and I choose to stay in the menswear lane with no intrusion from women's wear.
I don't know when the word porn became fashionable. It stupefies me that it is used so widely to describe things. I'm of the opinion that there are many other words we can use to describe the love we have for whatever, the word porn however is especially egregious. This word is so pervasive; if you get on Twitter you will see just how entrenched it is. You get all sorts of things such as: word porn, shoe porn, toe porn, poem porn, car porn, vinyl porn, etc. In fact, take something you like, anything, and then in describing it 'suffix' it with the word porn. My problem is we know where the word comes from and what it means, why would you want to use it as a descriptive word? The biggest issue I have with the word is, how do you explain to a twelve year old boy what sock porn is? The boy probably understands what socks are but the additional word, how would you explain it? If he decides to look up the word himself and gets the correct meaning of the word, will it not confuse him when combining it with a thing of interest? This word is wrong, the way it is used is wrong and the more we use it the more it'll be normalised, which can't be right. Let's not change what is wrong and try and make it right.
PG: Man to man, generation to generation.