Of late, there seems to be a trend for some of the top clothing labels to merge aspects of their male and female lines. This is not to be confused with androgyny — although one can see how it can be hard to tell the difference — because androgyny is about gender ambiguity, whereas what I am on about is the conscious move to emulate form and fashion from the other side. The interchangeability of materials and patterns between the sexes is so new a trend that it’s time to shine is still a while away.
Examples would include corduroys for women, satin for men’s shirts, button-downs for women and berets for men. Some may argue that these aren’t anything new, and history has seen zanier cases in point, but in the cycle that is fashion, even when it comes around, nothing is never entirely the same. For example, we may wear a thin flow shirt, but the lace that adorned it may not be as popular as it was the last time around.
So, all said and done, if you wish to ride this pony, here are five things you should acquire – and when we say acquire, we don’t mean from your girlfriend’s cupboard.
BERET: If you’ve got the head for it, not to mention a supportive social circle that won’t cast you out for being too pansy, flaunt the beret.
SILK: In any form, raw or brilliant, silk can be a great choice for formal jackets and even suits. Sure, they have a certain shine (let’s use the word sheen, shall we?) but that is what sets it apart from wool. Get the cut fitted and shorter in length than usual, just like Daniel Craig did in his last outing as James Bond.
SHEER SOCKS: Or colourful short stockings, by any other name. Don’t worry, nobody will judge you for it. And if you already wear patterned socks, then this won’t seem like a big departure from the norm. They’re thinner, just as snug, but with much more variety of patterns and colours.
WATCHES: Bold is old; go instead for slightly subtler sizes. Anything over 39 mm in diameter is nearvulgar. Get instead the middlerange sizings, which are just as at home on a man’s wrist as on a woman’s.
HEELS: Shoes with heels stand to become trendy; from Oxford to wingtips, incorporate any style with a little more obvious heel to somewhat elongate the silhouette and give it a gradual taper.
FLORALS: Stereotypical as it may sound, floral patterns on just about anything, from shirts to shorts, cuff links and ties, will be a trend in the coming season. Embrace it.
These are but a few subtle ways to soften your otherwise stoic silhouette. It doesn’t make you any less male, just like wearing threepiece suits doesn’t detract from the femininity of a lady. Ditch the old imagery and define new ones.