Call them candy dandies, color block boys or even peacocks but the men who decide to risk big and invest in a colored summer suit or a bright blazer will find that the dividends on those assets will be high.
Many designers, perhaps inspired by all of the strong colors show during the spring/summer 2011 womenswear collections, decided what was good for the goose could also be good for the gander and set the catwalks a blaze with color. Menswear bellweather brand Jil Sander and its dynamic designer Raf Simons sent out pink, tangerine and cobalt blue trousers, paired with shirts in colors like canary yellow or azure blue, to rave reviews. It was a colorful collection that dovetailed perfectly with what Mr. Simons had shown only months early during the women’s ready to wear collections. Ditto Miuccia Prada whose bright striped crew neck sweaters and colorful “hospital scrubs” mens t-shirts harkened back to hues seen in the women’s show, and are now selling like hot cakes for the house.
As if any more proof was needed of the importance of adding color into a man’s closet then look no further that the menswear cornerstone brand Ermenegildo Zegna, Where, for its one hundredth year anniversary collection, head designer Alessandro Sartori sent out exquisitely cut summer suit crafted out of beautiful cottons and linens in burnt orange and sky blue. Or there is always Antonio Marras whose collection for Kenzo included a mint green pea coat worn with a matching shirt and zipper covered pants as well as peonie pink three button blazer. But the clear color winner this season is the citrus inspired shade of lemon yellow. It came down the runway cut into a zip front leather jacket at both the Giorgio Armani and Dsquared2 shows. It worked exceedingly well as a cropped rain coat in the nautical themed Junya Watanabe collection and Kean Etro wove it into the paisley prints and outerwear of his signature collection. Even Moschino used yellow to give a pair of straight forward cuffed pants, in its Mod inspired show, a jolt of juice.
For some men wearing color will clearly push them out of their comfort zone. Their best option is to take baby steps with color, say in the form of a colorful shirt worn with a more conservative jacket to cover it up or just a bright pair of shoes (Prada’s tri color platforms are a great place to start). As for those men who already have a rainbow of blazers or vivid pants stacked up in their closets then its time to take the plunge and go for a head to toe tone. It is undoubtedly bold and ballsy but this brash sartorial style is sure garner plenty of peer respect.