Dressing the Dapper Gentleman
Say goodbye to those unsightly baggy jeans, oversized shirts and snapback hats, and say hello to waistcoats, suspenders and cufflinks!
Men’s fashion is finally having a comeback. There has been a sudden boom of smart dressers that is taking over menswear. A huge factor that started this rise is the Hipster. The Hipster culture is very odd, it’s all about mixing vintage with modern (though more old than new). Old hobbies and pastimes are cropping up, such as candle making, photography, DIY and life hacks; we’ve all seen the obsession with mason jars!
2010 saw the rise of Hipster-ism by the television show’s protagonist from, Doctor Who. A big part of Hipster culture is science fiction and fantasy. Being a nerd of geek is no longer an insult. This is largely thanks to Harry Potter, Sherlock, Iron Man and The Big Bang Theory. The eleventh Doctor’s signature style features a bowtie, suspenders, button-up shirt, tweed jacket, black slacks and lace up boots. This “professor” style has been copied countless times and prompted bow tie sales in the UK to increase by 94%.
Celebrity culture has risen to a new extreme thanks to social media. We’ve become obsessed with celebrities, especially when it comes to what they’re wearing. Fashion has become fast-paced and we’re constantly trying to stay on trend. Men are now competing with women in the style department.
A new trend in Hollywood is the British. The two countries are starting to really mesh as more and more English cross the pond. It seems to be the latest fad in Hollywood, hiring an English actor, think of Damian Lewis in Homeland, David Tennant in Gracepoint, and Martin Freeman in Fargo. There are countless examples. There’s also a theme of television programs featuring an Englishman paired with an American, seen in Elementary, Sleepy Hollow,
and Forever. As the English take over American film, they’ve also been taking over the red-carpet.
Along with the exceptional acting talents, they’ve also brought with them their fashion sense. We must admit that some of the most finely dressed gentleman are English, just picture David Beckham, Tom Hiddleston, Benedict Cumberbatch, Idris Elba, and Eddie Redmayne. They all exude that cool, sexy, and distinguished attitude that is the epitome of Britishness. No finer man could pull off a well cut suit.
When trying to emulate a British gentleman imagine you are in a period drama. The Victorian era is best. Think tweed suits, with double breasted waistcoats, a neat tie, matching oxfords, a bowler hat, pocket watch and cane/walking stick. The Robert Downey Jr. Sherlock Holmes films are a good guideline. There are some perfectly English staples to try as well. For outerwear there is the classic Burberry trench coat or the dark double-breasted tweed coat of Benedict Cumberbatch’s Sherlock. There are many options for a suit, double or single-breasted to start. Then there is colour and pattern, coloured suits are back on trend. Try a burgundy Bordeaux, forest green or a brighter azure blue, light pinstripes and plaids. If you’re feeling extra bold try a velvet blazer. When trying a waistcoat, one can match the pattern of a suit or pick a complimenting colour or pattern. Waistlines are also rising, so try a high-waisted trouser. For around the neck, opt for a skinny tie, (or even try a knitted one) bow tie or cravat. These could be patterned or classic black. On your feet go for the classic oxford or try a brogue, spat style, slipper/loafer, lace-up boot, or Chelsea boot, to add some height slip on a Cuban heel. To add some fun little accessories try your hand at suspenders instead of belt. If you want to go the whole nine yards, look nothing further than the cufflinks.
Once you’ve found your element amongst the many options of English-style dress, remember to exude confidence and continue to experiment with fun colours and patterns. These Chelsea boots were made for walkin’!