The highs and lows of today’s menswear
For US-born, London-based blogger Emily Johnston, a button-down shirt and a champion South American polo player are the perfect combination
In years past, I used to moan about the fact that men had it so easy. They could just throw on a pair of jeans and a button-down shirt and out the door they’d go looking like a chic version of Robert Redford in a twostep fashion moment. In reality, that’s not the case; increasingly, men are, like us, standing in front of their wardrobes saying: “I have nothing to wear.” It’s about time we weren’t alone in this daily struggle, yet I feel we’ve arrived at this point because of mixed messaging. For heaven’s sake, there’s even a men’s romper that is taking hold this season as an actual trend… a men’s romper, people! Seriously, if I saw a man wearing one I’d have to stop him on the street and take a selfie to document the moment. For me, men always look their best in simple, classic ensembles. That said, I could easily fall in love with a man who sports the Ralph Lauren wardrobe from the classic movie The Great Gatsby and that’s no simple get-up. In 2017, the real style-heroes in the men’s department are the ones who take inspiration from just such days of old, and make it look so darn easy. So what’s the ideal? Well, for me it is all about timeless pieces and Nacho Figueras is the perfect example.
Never has a man-made something as simple as jeans and a button down shirt look so perfect. If you want to translate that to the man in your life, Father’s Day, I find, is a good way to hint at style. My biggest and best style-gifting moment will always be a Ralph Lauren blue and white button-down shirt. No man can go wrong wearing this piece. In fact, why not blow the budget and add a shawl-collar sweater to match, too.
Emily’s menswear must- have
The gift that keeps on giving… a classic from Ralph Lauren, Standard Fit Cotton Shirt, £85; visit ralphlauren.co.uk
British designer Tabitha Webb, who counts the Duchess of Cambridge as a client, has, like a lot of women, slowly reinvented her husband’s wardrobe
It’s a battle all woman face – men just won’t dress the way we want them to. I remember it was some time after I had met my husband, when our moments of true passion had subsided, that I suddenly realised his wardrobe had to change. The zip-up cardigans were quietly gifted to the charity shop, the high-waisted jeans were gradually “lost” and the Pixies T-shirts somehow shrank in the wash. However, a few shopping trips later to update him with some Edwin and Diesel jeans, a couple of linen shirts from Pink and a lot of checked shirts from Gitman Vintage, and I felt we had a good base from which to build his wardrobe again. He moaned about it, but I know he secretly loves all the glances he gets from the girls now that he is rocking a cooler wardrobe. Of course, in my dream world, my ideal man would be a cowboy (think Paul Newman or Ryan Gosling).
For me, a checked shirt and bashed-up jeans are all any man needs, and a lot of the male trends beyond this scare me. But there are some good things on the catwalk this season. For example, to my utter joy, light pink is here again. Although only the brave and, quite frankly, very hot (aka Harry Styles) can pull this off in an all-over suit, I think men as a rule look very handsome in pink linen shirts – check out Frescobol Carioca. Finally, as Father’s Day is around the corner, I suggest you all have a look at Frangipani’s gorgeous printed shirts for men. My favourite is the Maui Wowee, but I know I am going to struggle to get my man to wear it. I will gift it anyway, and hope that this, combined with eggs on toast and a surf magazine, will be enough to swing it.
Tabitha’s menswear must-have
Maui Wowee shirt, £75, Frangipani; visit frangipani-style.com