On The Runway

Men’s wear trends for Autumn/Winter 2012

Runway looks from (left to right): Dior Homme, Ferragamo, Burberry and Prada

I spent the long Chinese New Year holiday catching up with the trends coming out of the autumn/winter 2012 men’s wear shows from Paris and Milan. Unlike the women’s wear shows which thrive on theatre, men’s wear tends to be on the more practical side save for a few hijinks here and there.

This season was no exception as designers played with masculine looks that were more conservative and practical. That being said they had fun with elements such as neoprene and baseball hats (if I were you, I would leave those looks at home). More wearable were the roses at Comme des Garcons, Dries Van Noten’s psychedelic prints, the superhero capes and metallic or glossy finishings. Animal prints were also a big trend including whales, owls and kangaroo. So without further adieu, here are our top trends and must-have items for men next season…

Lean tailoring

The men’s silhouette is pared down and lean this season, as spotted at Jil Sander and Louis Vuitton. The Power suit made a comeback – at Prada it came in a three-piece version.  Elsewhere jackets had slender lapels and two button fastenings.


Aside from shearling, leather is the fabric of the season. Full leather suits appeared at Hermes, Jil Sander and Yves Saint Laurent. It was also mixed in with other fabrics which brings us to the next trend…

Mixed materials

To create texture designers mixed leather with other materials such as wool, cashmere and another big favourite, velvet.

Runway looks from (left to right): Yves Saint Laurent, Jil Sander, Lanvin and Louis Vuitton

New knitwear

Classics were given a new fashion twist from cardigans lined in shearling at Zegna and colour blocking at Bottega Veneta, to stretched shapes at Burberry and dinosaur prints at Jil Sander.

Statement coats

Lanvin and Rick Owens played with structured shoulders while sporty looks were de rigueur at brands such as Louis Vuitton where Kim Jones showed parkas.  Military jackets were the coverup of choice at Dior Homme while Dolce & Gabanna showed dramatic capes. Top of the list though is the bomber jacket.


Sure winter is all about black, but rich purple and burgundy ruled the roost at Prada and Gucci. Versace and Dior went for green. Mustard, red and blue added a pop of colour to the proceedings.


So long man bags. In their place are sleek and practical portfolio cases that appeared on every runway from Ferragamo to Burberry.

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