Despite my innate inclination to resort to subtle, yet imposing color contrasts on my attires, there are times when other techniques are in order. Although bold-colored garments comprise an essential part of my wardrobe, they are not appropriate for a number of occasions or even my mood on particular days. It’s true that playing with color provides a rich foundation for creating interesting ensembles, as contrast or complementing shades on different layers add visual appeal, but it’s not, by far, the only way to achieve such a result. Monochromatic variations, per instance, pose a perfect example as I’ve covered in recent posts. Other “simple” ways to make your outfit stand out include plays on length and proportion, or resorting to the use of textures and patterns – the case at hand will address the latter.
Menswear has come a long way when it comes to incorporating playful details into one’s look and no doubt, the use of patterns has greatly contributed to this evolution. While some patterns have established themselves as quintessential in men’s fashion, new iterations keep on arising with every new seasonal collection. So much so, that those very timeless patterns such as herringbone, chalk stripes, houndstooth and more, are currently being incorporated into contemporary garments that disrupt their classic origins. Be them loud or subtle in essence, which greatly depends on the wearer’s personal style and confident attitudes towards dressing, patterns should be worn with some rules in mind – with the most pressing being aiming for an interesting rather than clownish outcome.
It all comes down to balance and adjusting the remaining elements to create an interesting result, so if you opt for an overwhelming pattern on a shirt, for instance, try to tone the other pieces down: sometimes just a playful hint goes a long way. Again, personal style bears a great influence when it comes to sporting patterns, especially if you amp it up a notch and enter the pattern matching level. Here, scale becomes of the utmost importance, as does the very harmony between the type of patterns used. I’ve posted several combinations in the past, but this time around I focused on scale and texture to make the most of the same pattern: herringbone.
Classic and polished at heart, herringbone is one of my personal favorites. Here, it is presented in 3 variations spread throughout the raincoat, sports jacket, and trousers, albeit in a subtle manner. With all garments presenting distinct textures and slight scale variations on the herringbone, the result is a sophisticated attire whose intricacies are only visible up close. The use of pattern doesn’t necessarily imply a “go to hell” ensemble, quite the opposite actually… the addition of toned-down patterned elements delivers a higher level of sophistication.
Details: Grey Herringbone Single Breasted coat by Norwegian Rain, herringbone tweed sports jacket by CAMO, seersucker shirt by T-Michael, herringbone wool trousers by Estelita Mendonça, oxford shoes by Raparo, shades by The Bespoke Dudes Eyewear and cashmere scarf by Burberry.
Model and Styling: Miguel Amaral Vieira
Ph: Dulce Daniel