Choosing a print
How to wear prints ?
It is not easy to pull off the full body print look. Infrequently, we see attempts at it, sometimes during fashion weeks or in creative circles that like to buck trends. However, that may be changing as we start to see more and more pattern in streetwear.
More commonly prints are worn in partnership with plain pieces, to bring a touch of something interesting to an otherwise sober outfit. This is a clever way to build a strong style with hints of individuality.
What are the common prints/patterns ?
Camouflage – as it’s name suggests – relates to hiding. We see the first camouflage patterns in a military context at the beginning of the 20th century. In a fashion sense, it’s a fairly easy print to wear and is certainly the most worn print globally. It can be found in more ‘masculine’ colours such as dark green, brown and gray. In these colours it partners well with raw denim, dark coloured or beige chinos and generally combines well with basics of the male wardrobe. There is a considerable selection and it may be difficult to choose the right camouflage. For summer 2020, designers have made a softer, more romantic interpretation of camouflage, tending towards tie and dye. We suggest you wear this in colourful versions; a strong statement but one that is on point for this season.
Floral prints can sometimes be difficult for men to wear, but is the big trend for summer 2020. Designers use it to bring some gentle sweetness to their collections. Don’t be afraid to wear this, again complemented by denim or chinos. In larger sizes it may be more difficult to carry, but we think it shows boldness and personality in your silhouette. The colours are important too. For a more classic look, the sober, blended shades work well whilst those unafraid of stronger statements can go for the frank or pastel hues.
The term ‘placed’ prints distinguishes all over drawings (repeating patterns) from a carefully placed image on the fabric. The ‘placed’ print is less abstract and communicates a strong visual message. It’s an appropriate choice if you are deliberate in using your clothing to tell something. We want to see this trend prevail because we think that increasingly men are finding the confidence to own their fashion choices and this is one way to share strong and individual messages.
Stripes are the most classic of men’s fashion trends and very few of us wouldn’t have a pin-striped shirt in our wardrobe. A word of advice, vertical strips are more flattering because they lengthen your silhouette. Pin-strips are common, but don’t be afraid of thicker strips in more contrasting colours. This gives a more casual look to the piece, retain flexibility to combine with less formal materials and styles, e.g. wide pants, chinos, selvedge jeans.
Try to move beyond any assumptions or prejudices you have about certain common prints. Whatever you choose, have fun with it, they can all work.
photo 1 : Rochas/Alessandro Lucioni
photo 3 : Dior/Alessandro Lucioni
photo 5 : Valentino/Filippo Fior
photo 7 : MSGM/Salvatore Dragone
photo 9 : JW Anderson/Filippo Fior