It’s 2021, which means it’s out with all the old and tired, and in with the fresh, new threads. As the world begins to recover from the nightmare of last year, menswear collections have been rife with hope, joy and colour. Nautical accents and safari toppers transport you to a far-flung land, unapologetic colour greets you with happiness and optimism, and there’s a return to fun, fresh shapes.
To help you navigate the season’s key trends, we’ve distilled the collections and narrowed it down to these seven key ideas.
01 | Anchors Away
Ready your sea legs for the nautical journey ahead. Gucci’s Alessandro Michele made waves by pairing an anchor-patterned knit sweater with camel-coloured corduroy trousers while Donatella Versace worked all manner of scuba knits into contemporary jumpers. Leading the fleet was Dolce & Gabbana with a series of geometric prints and beach rock-inspired embellishments in varying tones of blue.
02 | On The Hunt
Utilitarian dressing reaches fever pitch with the well-cut safari jacket. Perfect for urban jungle warriors is Ermenegildo Zegna’s leather zip-up number that features laser-cut perforations and oversized pockets. Kick back and relax in Tod’s laidback looks that juxtaposed contemporary tailoring with, say, a burnt orange safari topper, or slip into Etro’s cotton coordinates rendered in washed out florals.
03 | Don’t Go Home, Go Big Instead
Gents can breathe easier with this season’s bevy of oversized proportions and languorous cuts. Our star picks? Loewe, for injecting a classic trench coat with artsy flair with sweeping cape-like sleeves; Virgil Abloh, for lightening the mood at Louis Vuitton with gigantic cartoon toys that counter the formal tailoring, or a tent-shaped top from Botter — LVMH Prize nominee in 2018 — which came complete with wide strips of fraying floral jacquard.
04 | Blinding Lights
A bright note or two might just be the thing to lift ourselves out of the doldrums. Designers clearly agree, given the spectrum of shades that burst forth on the runways. Bright pinks and scarlet reds were spotted at Fendi, Tom Ford and Paul Smith; Burberry and Louis Vuitton opted for the blues, from cobalt to aquamarine. But the most eye-catching palette came from Donatella Versace, whose army marched out in searing splashes of verdant green, punchy oranges and sunshine yellow.
05 | Lived-In And Loving It
Wear your clothes straight off the drying rack — yes, wrinkles and all. Cult luxury go-to Y Project showcased a lean black suit with creases and ruched panels for formal-yet-casual appeal, while Veronique Nichanian imagined the Hermes dude in slightly crumpled, artfully dishevelled ensembles. Even master of pin-sharp menswear Giorgio Armani eschewed his usual impeccable fare for unlined blazers that were intentionally left crinkled — as if the models had hopped out of bed and straight onto the runway.
06 | It Takes Two
Perennial questions such as “what should I wear?” require sensible answers — one would be this season’s printed twinset. Kim Jones had the Dior Oblique motif tiled across a silk shirt with matching shorts. Riccardo Tisci aimed for artsy with his doodles-covered shirt-plus-pants combo. Other options: Louis Vuitton’s warped checkerboard, Ermenegildo Zegna’s pyjama strips, and landscape prints at MSGM.
07 | Garden Party
Nothing says spring quite like flowers. Updated reimaginations featured at Boss, where trippy computer-manipulated blooms were plastered all over sporty anorak coats and shorts. At Fendi, printed shadows of a pot of gypsophila were captured on a loose shirt. Men who prefer their petals a little more traditional, meanwhile, would do well with Tom Ford’s poppy-festooned trousers or an embroidered casual shirt from Saint Laurent’s sun-soaked collection.
This story first appeared in the January/ February 2021 issue of A Magazine.