Post-pandemic fashion is getting bolder, and not just for women.
The recent uptick in women’s partywear, as classified by skin-baring, sexy styles like Mugler’s thong jeans and sheer catsuits, foreshadowed a significant shift in men’s fashion. Recent Spring 2022 runway shows presented a wave of styles that champion experimentation and fluidity, according to a new Spring/Summer 2022 men’s wear report by product intelligence company Trendalytics.
Burberry’s “Universal Passport” collection offered a prime example of this fashion freedom, the report noted, with models clad in edgy elements like leather and faux piercings that Burberry chief creative officer Riccardo Tisci likened to the free spirit of youth and a daring attitude. The collection also offered bold prints, best represented in a standout look that combined cherry-red slim-fit trousers with tunics drenched in the phrase “Universal Passport.”
Text prints were also showcased in Jil Sander’s collection, featuring neutral lettering punctuated by joyful accessories like a bright orange hat and bandana scarf.
Also folded into the season’s extravagance theme are bright colorways. Trendalytics called special attention to lime green, cerulean and light blue, which have seen year-over-year increases of 12 percent, 14 percent and 3 percent, respectively. Designers played with ombre hues, as demonstrated by Etro’s lime green and yellow suiting and Hermes’ orange and pink sweater vest.
And while bright colors seem to be the palette of choice for statement-making garments, when it comes to suiting, designers are opting for pastels, according to the report. Pastel purple, blue, and green were among the most popular shades from names like Diesel, Fendi and MSGM.
Rapper Travis Scott made waves when he walked for Dior in looks pulled from their latest collaboration. Featuring a palette of sunset pink, cactus green and earthly brown, the collection incorporated natural elements while simultaneously pushing gender barriers. It also underscored music’s influence on fashion, as demonstrated by fellow rapper Kanye West’s blockbuster partnership with Gap.
Not only is men’s apparel getting more experimental with colors, but it’s also continuing to test the concept of gender.
British fashion designer Erdem Moralioglu feted his foray into men’s wear with the floral fabrications, shrunken tailoring and shortened hemlines reflective of his women’s line. Draping fabrics such as satin and silk were both up 17 percent since last year as well. Casablanca, Loewe, Dior and Diesel all included the classically feminine material in their men’s collections. Gender neutrality was also spotted in the fine details, with split and scalloped hems presented by Louis Vuitton and Dior.
Gender fluidity is becoming a top search term, according to global fashion shopping platform Lyst, which reported that agender-related keywords jumped 33 percent since the beginning of the year, while press and social media mentions for terms related to genderless fashion spiked 46 percent in May.
“Prep leisure,” which Edited anticipated to be big for Fall 2021, is continuing its popularity. Defined by sweater vests, straight-leg trousers and varsity prints, the trend merges with streetwear for a modern update. Sweater vests remain strong for Spring, as seen in collections from Paul Smith, Bethany Williams and others. Other preppy patterns to watch are checkerboard prints and vertical stripes, up 30 percent and 23 percent, respectively, compared to last year.