One prime example of a tried and true look making a triumphant return is the patent leather shoe. These glistening reminders of the days of braces and spit shines have made a comeback in the form of the venerable Co-respondent shoe and the Balmoral Oxford. The boot is also enjoying resurgence, in sturdy, no nonsense work styles and in dressy, short-ankle versions with a touch of biker detailing. In casual footwear, look for the more understated look of the canvas trainer rather than the elaborate and multi-colored basketball look.
Head gear is also becoming de rigueur again, with the stingy brim and the brown trilby becoming the go-to look. Not to be overlooked, however, are the more military inspired designs such as the beret and the back to basics cap. Again, do not look for loud colors and patterns this season. Instead, monochromatic is this season's watchword in hats, as well as in all men's designer clothes, with olive, black, and navy predominate. Perhaps this is a nod to the chill in the air we are all experiencing; a need to 'keep one's head' or to keep from being frozen out, as it were. Ironically (or coincidently, if one prefers), the Newsboy, that staple headgear of young newspaper hawkers in any film about the 1930s, is all the rage. Telling that no?
Though color experiment and extravagance may be passe this season, textures in men's designer clothes are bolder and more self-assured than ever before. Leather, as always, is a good look, but designers have reached for the more luxurious calfskin and supple sheep over more traditional hides. Take note of the importance of such tactile-rewarding fabrics as velvet, appearing in everything from pants to jackets. Cashmere and fur outerwear yearn to be touched, suggesting a sybaritic theme of indulgence.
Outerwear is also making the scene in traditional looks. Here, however, is one of the few places that the color palette has been expanded. Overcoats and trenches are no longer restricted to beiges and charcoals, but are appearing in a riot of color. Blazers in vibrant blues and resplendent sea-foam greens, pea coats and bomber jackets in decidedly non-military-issue hues, all stalk the runways of the world's fashion capitols. It is an example of the world of high style taking cues from the world of street style, and it suggests that, even in these times of economic duress and uncertainty, we still have hope. We still find the way to project a standout look, an eye grabbing vision, like the first cardinal of spring against the winter's last snowfall.