Autumn and winter are great times of the year for the fashion-forward man. This season gives gentlemen a lot more room to play around with personalising their wardrobes. Who doesn’t love a great scarf, boot, hat, or trendy pair of gloves? It’s the time of year when men have as much opportunity to play around with their wardrobes as woman.
With the added accessories and need to stay warm during these chilly months, comes the risk of committing some major fashion no-nos. Looks and styles that may have been on-trend the previous autumn/winter, may have suddenly become extremely passé this season. Well don’t worry, as always, So So Gay has your back. We had the opportunity to catch up with upcoming fashion designer, Teddy Manywounds, this week. For the last month, Teddy has been working as an intern at New York Fashion Week, and he was eager to spill all the news he’s heard about what some of this season’s biggest fashion no-nos are. We also talked to some of our own readers via twitter, who were eager to share the autumn fashion disasters that make them cringe.
1. Excessive colour blocking - Colours are more in fashion this season than usual for autumn, but don’t overdo it. It’s best to choose one piece to highlight your wardrobe; a printed coloured scarf over a wonderfully fitted black jacket, or a beautifully vibrant blue shirt, paired with grey trousers. Recently, it’s been trendy to ‘take risks’ with your wardrobe and be a little outlandish with colour (thanks, Lady Gaga), but that era is coming to an end. Teddy says, ‘think of color blocking as a seasoning on food: too much and it’s ruined, but just a little makes a fantastic world of difference’.
2. Canvas shoes - ’It’s fall, which means it’s time to get back to work or school and embrace the crisp air’, Teddy says. Canvas shoes seem to be an item many guys think are still appropriate in the chillier months, so long as it’s not snowing or pouring down. Wrong. Put them away for next summer and get out the leather and suede footwear.
3. Jumpsuits - Also known as ‘baby grows’, the adult version of these are unacceptable. Teddy says, ‘this should be obvious, but scarily enough they seem to be popping up everywhere.’ Although made popular recently by certain boy bands and Big Brother contestants, jumpsuits are only appropriate for children. Looking like an overgrown child is never cute.
4. Poorly-fitted anything - Take the time to make sure that crisp, new jacket fits correctly. If necessary, buy an item slightly larger than your fit, and then have it altered and taken-in at the relevant places. Alterations aren’t expensive and they can make a world of difference. Teddy says the garmets that men are most likely to wear that are clearly ill-fitted, are trousers and blazers.
5. Leather pants - We’ve all see this guy, the man who thinks that autumn is an appropriate time to break out a shiny pair of leather slacks to go to a restaurant or cinema in. The truth is, the only time leather pants are appropriate is if you’re actually at a leather bar.
6. Audacious prints - Enough said.
7. Mixing and mismatching - Teddy really spills the truth on this current fashion faux-pas: ‘During the summer, a lot of gay men are influenced by what is going on in pop culture, especially music. The way your favourite pop stars dress is unlikely to be a look that’s great for you while you’re picking up your morning coffee. It’s juvenile and should be saved for the club.’ The recommendation is one pattern, and no more than three or four colours per outfit.
8. Gigantic wool scarves - Let a sheep keep warm this season and stay away from the huge wool scarves. Try something in cotton or cashmere, in a nice earth tone, which will keep your neck warm and cozy just as well.
We also took to twitter to hear from some of our readers on this issue, here’s what some of them said:
9. Not using an iron - Joshua (@Joshuagaeta) can’t stand the look of a wrinkled jacket or dress shirt on an otherwise attractive man. He says: ‘Use the no-fluff cycle, and to get the right kind of attention, pleats and a fresh press are a must – you can even make a plain white shirt look expensive.’ If you don’t have the time for an iron, clothes-steamers are relatively cheap these days. It’s a quick way to make sure you don’t look like you’re living out of a suitcase.
10. Corduroy (‘cords’) - Bobbie (@BeeLRH) is really turned off by this dated look on a bloke: ‘In the fall and winter, all kinds of strange textures tend to show up on men’s trousers.’ This cotton-filling pile fabric with lengthwise cords came about in the 1700s, so to say the look is dated now is an understatement.
So there you have it, the 10 biggest fashion pitfalls we men are most likely to fall into this season. If you’re guilty of one of the faux-pas above, don’t worry – we are too.