Men's spring fashion: trending topics


First clue: this is not awful combat trousers with pointless pockets.

'Modern camo'

The fastest route to understanding camo circa 2013 is to do what any sensible person who likes clothes does. Refer to the oracle Dries Van Noten, whose beautifully put-together spring collection shows remixed camo patterns with tailoring, crisp white, slouchy knits, navy and even the occasional blast of gold. Backstage after his spring show, the Belgian designer explained that he'd imagined his new camo like a leopardprint. Note: Topman is selling a leopard-camo hybrid T-shirt this season. Alternative plan: buy a khaki jumper from Jigsaw.

Animal print

Study Bobby Gillespie in the latest issue of Another Man wearing Saint Laurent leopard to see how to do it. Gillespie has animal-print form: he has previously been seen on the frow in a snake shirt. From London labels, such as YMC and Sibling, to the international catwalks of Emporio Armani or Comme, the animal look has also hit the high street. There is knitwear at All Saints while Zara is selling animal T-shirts and sunglasses. BTW the latter are so very next-autumn Burberry.

Double denim

Any excuse to discuss Michael J Fox's wardrobe in Back to the Future again. First things first, the denim jacket is definitely back. It is being flagged by all the men's magazines as a hero piece for the season. Actor Charlie Hunnam, star of Sons of Anarchy and the cover star of GQ Style, wears double Levis for a shoot in the magazine. The high street is strongly backing denim: River Island has developed various styles for the new season, while Asos is expanding its washes this season for a new denim range. On the catwalk, Calvin Klein and Acne pushed things further still with triple denim. Blimey.


Snazzy trainers have been bubbling in fashion circles for a while now with Nike Air Max and New Balance leading the charge. This season, Raf Simons' multi-hued catwalk trainers, matched with baggy suit trousers, are set to be a major hit, while next autumn, Lanvin's are set to have similar buzz. For further proof of their currency: Alber Elbaz, creative director of Lanvin, was recently spotted wearing Nikes with a pinstripe suit. Not everyone is on board. Street-style snapper Tommy Ton says: "I don't like garish sneakers. When your shoes outshine your entire outfit, that's the worst."

Yellow or a red?

Bold colour. Pastels. Bright combos. Statement suits. Men's fashion is no longer about being a wallflower. If one trend unites the high street, from Marks & Spencer (pink trousers) to River Island (orange shorts), it's the trend for bright clothing. But if two colours had the edge over the rest of the rainbow during the shows, they were red and yellow. Tinie Tempah has already been spotted rocking Paul Smith's ketchup suiting while the new issue of GQ Style sees a rather dapper silver fox model looking splendid in Gucci's yellow double-breasted catwalk suit. Easy ways to get the look: Gap's yellow jeans, Banana Republic's red bomber or Asos's red blazer.

Bomber jackets

This is by far the dominating force in jacket fashions right now whether you're after a Topman varsity bargain, a dash of animal-print-sleeved Kenzo or a blow-the-budget slice of super-sleek baseball-style a la Valentino. In fact, because this look has been building momentum, stores such as Cos and Reiss have refined theirs so they look sleek and minimal rather than punchy and sporty, which makes them more versatile. The bomber's success is also because it's a brillantly workable layer. Latest styling twist: wear layered under tailored coats or blazers zipped through to the neck for a modern sports-tailoring mash.

Portfolio cases

The ascent of the document case or portfolio clutch, from boardroom meetings, to actual out-on-the-street fashion item, continues at pace. It's on blogs, on the frow, on the catwalk and being carried under the arms of people such as Adam Shulman. It's an accessory that forces you to edit your life down to the bare bones, and unlike a shopper it doesn't ruin the shoulder line of your jacket. Holdall & Co, whose British-made folios come with satchel-style metal buckles, offers a slightly roomier take on this look – its 14in case fits magazines and a laptop.

Socks and sandals

From Prada's 70s retro sports collection where lots of dudes wore socks and sandals, to Agi & Sam's offering where all the dudes wore patterned socks with white Birkenstocks, this divisive topic is back on the agenda.

Bleach or quiff?

See Ryan Gosling in The Place Beyond the Pines and Benedict Cumberbatch playing WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Is this the season's cheapest makeover? Maybe. Though Alex Turner's quiff on the cover of Another Man is looking like actual hair competition, and with his Glasto headlining slot and all, well ...


Burberry went for it with Quality Street foils this season, showing coats (prices from around £1,875), shirts (from £350) and trousers (currently not available online) all finished with a reflective shimmer on its catwalk, while Romeo Beckham became their poster boy for the look. Lanvin's metallic was less dazzling – a series of silver looks, including tailoring, came towards the end of its spring/summer catwalk. As yet, give or take the odd shoe, the high street has been rather slow to pick up on all things metal in menswear, which means it's either a fashion slow-burner or the season's fashion red herring. The jury is out.

Powered by article was written by Simon Chilvers, for The Guardian on Tuesday 2nd April 2013 19.07 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010