What were the big style takeaways from the catwalks in London, Milan and Paris last June? Here we break down the 12 big menswear trends you need to know for spring/summer ’16…
Get yourself a Cuban collar
From left to right: Topman Design, Louis Vuitton, Lanvin, Valentino, E Tautz
This season we’re looking back to the 1950s and taking inspiration from your grandfather’s favourite short-sleeved shirt. As temperatures rise, ditch your heavy knitwear and button down Oxford shirts. Instead get yourself some lightweight shirts featuring the retro Cuban collar. For an even more spring-appropriate look, don’t be afraid to go bold.
Photography by Indigital
From left to right: Dolce & Gabbana, Yohji Yamamoto, Neil Barrett, Gucci, James Long
Usually during the shows it becomes clear that one particular type of pattern will rule over all for the season – however no such thing emerged for spring/summer ’16. Instead, the trend came from not what to wear, but how to wear it – as a head-to-toe look. Whether you go for matching pattern at top and bottom or two colour-complementary exploded prints, the key to pulling this off is exercising restraint where it’s needed. Keep your accessories solid coloured and preferably in blank-canvas shades like navy, black or white, and let that big bold print speak for itself.
Summer’s a grey area
Usually the warmer months invite an explosion of colour on the catwalks – but for Spring-Summer 2016 designers seemed to unanimously decide on a more subdued palette, with grey topping the list as the most widely-seen hue. Sure, it’s a colour that all men have in their wardrobe already, but next season it’s all about how you wear it: varying shades and patterns of grey should be worn all at once to create a look that’s big on texture.
From left to right: Missoni, Neil Barrett, Berluti, Oliver Spencer, Paul Smith
Get some greens
Green has been around for a few seasons now, but this season it’s booming. While we’ve previously seen green as a head-to-toe outfit in the same shade, for S/S ’16 we’ll see the shades split up and mixed together. Beginners should clash hues using accessories (such as ties or bags), but for next level menswear points commit with a few contrasting pieces that you can wear together.
From left to right: Burberry Prosum, Hermes, Gieves & Hawkes, Canali, Ann Demeulemeester
Stride out in baggy trousers
We’ve seen baggy trousers bubbling under the surface for a couple of seasons now, but this season they burst through in a big way with the vast majority of designers showing loosened-up shapes.
While we loved the wide-leg jeans at E Tautz and quilted trousers at Craig Green, the main way we saw these worn was with tailoring.
If you’re going to invest in a casual suit, make sure it has trousers with a slouchy cut.
From left to right: Agi & Sam, E Tautz, Giorgio Armani, Craig Green, Fendi, Etro, Lanvin, Bally
Learn the meaning of “Chinoiserie”
There were lots of shout-outs to China in the collections, with pyjama trousers, silk shirts and even full suits cut from Chinoiserie (aka patterns that are influenced by Eastern elements such as dragons, animals and flowers). However, the most popular (and wearable) way that we saw this type of print executed was on a series of bold, silk baseball and bomber jackets, most notably at Dolce & Gabbana, Valentino and Louis Vuitton.
From left to right: Marc Jacobs, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Louis Vuitton, Valentino
Jeans are more distressed than ever
Good news for guys who get through their jeans at a rate of knots: next season’s denim is ripped, patched, bleached – all but destroyed, basically. And while ones that are slashed to pieces might only be for the boldest among us, the key takeaway is that your jeans should look lived in – whether that’s through a lighter wash or a repair or two.
From left to right: Baartmans & Siegel, James Long, Tiger of Sweden, Calvin Klein Collection, Philipp Plein
Anoraks are back
The humble pac-a-mac is going high-end. When an inevitable, impromptu rain shower hits, make sure you’ve got a light nylon cover-up to hand. While we saw ones in patterns at Brioni and bold, block colours at E Tautz, the most popular style was see-though – which is handy, because it goes with everything you already own.
From left to right: Z Zegna, Brioni, Lou Dalton, Wooyoungmi, Hardy Amies
The only hat you’ll need next season…
No longer just the preserve of American sportsmen out on the diamond, baseball caps were all over the catwalks for the new season. However, forget those snapbacks you know from Nineties boybands, this new breed is made from luxurious materials like leather, suede and exotic skins and is intended to be worn just as easily with your suit as with your weekend jeans – and should be worn with the peak facing frontwards at all times.
From left to right: Balmain, Les Hommes, Berthold, Salvatore Ferragamo, Versace
Your 2 essential summer layers: a suede jacket and a zip-up
The Seventies vibe we saw hit its peak during autumn/winter ’15 continues for the new season, so if you are debating investing in a suede jacket, rest assured that it will carry you through to the summer. Another item you should invest in is the zip-up jogging suit-style jumper, which we saw worn in a variety of ways: under suits, as a light top layer and, our personal favourite, tied around the waist and ready for sundown.
From left to right: Belstaff, Officine Generale, Bottega Veneta, Topman Design, Ami, Prada
Backpacks you can take to the boardroom
Photography by Getty Images
The backpack revolution has been happening for a while now, however this season saw a slew of designers playing with the shapes, sizes and materials – boosting the genre to all-new heights of sleekness. While we saw them at Louis Vuitton and Wooyoungmi, our personal favourite was the slim iteration above from Hermes, cut from navy leather and finished with sparkling chrome hardware, it’s more than smart enough to wear with a suit to the office.
Socks ‘n’ sandals aren’t going anywhere
Look around you when you’re next out in the sun: you’ll notice a swathe of men around you will be wearing pool slides with gym socks. It’s something that’s also cropped up on the designers’ radars too – almost every show from the edgiest East End label to the most conservative Italian fashion houses featured sandals on socks worn together. However, the difference is that plastic pool slides have been replaced by beautiful leather straps and those white tube socks with luxurious cotton and cashmere iterations, often in co-ordinating colours. Time to unleash you inner German tourist, gentlemen…
From left to right: Margaret Howell, Maison Margiela, Bottega Veneta, Versace, Kenzo