Summertime starts this month, which means it’s time to update your wardrobe and ditch the plaid shirt and Nike Roshe shoes. The only thing worse than misjudging an outfit, is holding on to a trend too long.
What was once an on-point ensemble may now look like a dated mess that can border on sad if you’re not careful. Have you seen guys who desperately try to cling to their old mod trappings? How about those with long sideburns alongside their hairy ear holes wearing Ben Sherman and nothing else? You don’t want to end up like that, do you? Now that we’ve frightened the hell out of you, here are 10 signs that you’re stuck with a re-run look.
You still wear a plaid shirt
In a shallow grave alongside big beards and pale ale, lies the last smouldering remnants of the plaid shirt. Once a wardrobe essential, it’s now the out-of-touch-stone for many a man, spurred on by the Americana re-revival of Gitman Vintage and the like – but now it’s probably best to stuff them back in the drawer.
Instead: The key is to go understated and oversized: Beams Plus has a really nice range of banded-collar shirts made from 100% cotton, with a half-button set-up – meaning that you just whack it straight over your head, smock-style.
You’re wearing a bow tie
The bow tie’s resurgence was swift and devastating: a modern take on a British classic for a world finally emerging from a skinny-tie dark age. It was a bold look, but goodwill and Doctor Who couldn’t keep it afloat for very long, with M&S’ little-loved Oliver Cheshire-fronted Best Of British AW14 collection being the final nail in the coffin.
Instead: No tie is a nice bet (the boys from Hurts have been styling it to stellar effect for years) but if you’re forced, a knitted tie will serve you well – its change of texture offering a contrast that will liven up your suit, as anyone at this year’s Pitti Uomo show can attest.
You’re still into oversized check
When it comes to statement prints, you can bet that they’ll be out again just as quickly as they came sprinting in. The oversized-check look was big in AW14 with Italian designers such Corneliani – but let’s just let this one lie please. Now you look like you’re wearing a picnic blanket!
Instead: Patches are the new big check. And when it comes to patches, you want to look to Japan. Keizo Shimizu’s label Needles has a great take on the coach jacket made of “reworked” military surplus, which gives you that hot “rogue Vietnam veteran” look that we’ll likely all be clamouring for this year. If that feels a bit out of reach, try Asos for something a little cheaper and, frankly, more office-friendly.
You think wearing a fedora looks ‘smart’
I think it’s safe to say that this one is a no-brainer. You watched Mad Men and you thought they looked cool – sure, we get it. It’s fine. But chances are you’re not Roger Sterling and you’re not Don Draper. And in that hat you just look like you’re still yearning for ethics in games journalism.
Instead: Despite its admittedly strong showing on street wear at Pigalle’s debut catwalk show last month, you must shun the fedora in favour of the Panama hat. This is a bold, brave alternative – especially if you want to hide your hair. It will work brilliantly with a tan. But, as with all hats, all it takes is confidence.