The clashing prints and patterns trend is hardly a new or innovative fashion statement this year, having been incredibly popular for the past few years, especially last year, brands such as Kenzo and Katie Eary had powerful clashing prints as a running theme throughout their collections. Now, in 2014 the trend is even bigger!
Basso & Brooke, Givenchy and Jonathan Saunders are just a few of the menswear designers that have embraced, and conquered with complete style and perfection, the clashing patterns and colour blocking trends. 2014 gave fashion fans an array of clashing prints; from Basso & Brooke’s play with masculinity and femininity, bold colours and monochrome, to Jonathan Saunders’ use of contrasting florals, there are many different interpretations of trend.
Trends may come and go, and may always change with rapid speeds, but they can sometimes represent something much bigger than just a fashion statement. So what does an embrace of alternative, bolder prints tell us about the current state of menswear? Or perhaps a better question is: what does this trend suggest about an seemingly current evolution in men’s fashion?
Fashion has been used, since it began as a form of adornment, to tell a story, to discuss issues and topics that are relevant in society at the time. Take Basso & Brooke’s SS14 menswear collection, for instance; a sea of colour, pattern and texture. With a perfectly executed fusion of dark, monochromatic prints and vibrant, graphic designs, the collection seems to play with the idea of masculinity, of men’s shifting styles from hyper-masculinity to embracing androgyny and more feminine prints and colours. Being pushed out if it’s comfort zone, men’s fashion has changed course over the years. And has travelled into new, unchartered waters.
Collections like Basso & Brooke’s, where there is a stark dichotomy between the clashing prints, seem to reflect shifting ideas of style and self expression; men are beginning to embrace more feminine forms of dress, and are now a lot less restricted by cultural ideas about gender and identity.
The clashing prints trend is not just a trend, it’s a sign, a marker, of changes in culture and the way in which people dress, and express themselves.
Words: Akeil Onwukwe-Adamson