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The emphasis on portraying fashion as the extension of one’s personality has made men’s fashion more interesting.
The emphasis on portraying fashion as the extension of one’s personality has made men’s fashion more interesting.

The summer man: India’s top designers on contemporary men’s fashion

India's top designers on the contemporary trends in men's fashion and some of the major fashion oversights

There has never been a better time for men’s fashion. What has made things more interesting in the recent years is the emphasis on portraying fashion as the extension of one’s personality. ‘Be yourself, be comfortable’ is the mantra most designers are going by. Emphasis is also on experimenting with colours. Mint Indulge spoke to some of India’s top designers about the contemporary trends in men’s fashion and some of the major fashion oversights. Edited excerpts:

TARUN TAHILIANI

Tahiliani’s Spring Summer’15 collection is inspired by the artworks of the UK-based artists Singh Twins.

The concept

Besides our classics of modern Indian menswear, which includes the basics such as bundis, shirts, jodhpur trousers, narrow trousers, churidar kurtas, bandhgalas and sherwanis, we used the body of work of the Singh Twins and stripped them down to make collages of prints for our new collection inspired by their colours, motifs and forms.

Top trends

The top trends of the season are comfort, classicism, better luxury, fit, impeccably styled but toned-down fashion. Gone are the days of over-ornate wannabe fashion. Be comfortable in your own skin, wear what suits you, and define your own style. Style is a personal thing.

The best dressed man

I would say Gautam Thapar. I have always maintained he is a very well-dressed man in corporate India, very elegant, and understated.

I think at a flamboyant extreme is Romi Chopra, who wears the most beautiful Jamewar coats, shawls and kurtas and chogas. Arjun Rampal is the best dressed man in Bollywood.

Biggest fashion oversights

Indian men look at things on Italian models and think that with their pot bellies they can wear those and look all right. They tend to wear things that are overfitted, a little too jazzy and perhaps things that might look good if they were 6 feet 2 inches tall and very lean. I think the biggest oversight is trying to be over western one day and over Indian another day. I have always maintained that you’ve got to have your own style.

SHANTANU AND NIKHIL

The designer duo’s menswear this season is subtle in softer colour palette with fine detailing, sharp cuts and innovative drapes.

The concept

Our spring summer 2015 “Advent of the Dawn" is based on the life of the Duchess…

Top trends

The Spring Summer is all about drapes fluidity, softer colour palette and light weight fabrics.

In terms of colour, taupe, lavender, grey and onyx black with the accent of gold are in demand.

Styling tips

Keep it subtle, go back to the roots…mix and match…and avoid overdo.

Wardrobe must-haves

Pocket square, brooches, pair of slip-on shoes with small detailing.

The best dressed man

Arjun Rampal. He’s effortless with complete style sense. Internationally, I would say Chris brown. He creates looks that are unique and innovative and sets up bold trends.

Biggest fashion oversights

Indian men follow a cycle of repeating three–four-years-old wardrobe pieces. Like repeating their old pair of jeans. They must think about change as it’s important to add new colours and new pieces to your wardrobe. So buy unique accessories whenever travelling and always mix and match.

RAGHAVENDRA RATHORE

Rathore’s recent collection is designed with the present weather in mind; it offers comfort and customized fit, keeping in mind the airy requirements of the season. It is inspired by the bandhgala jacket and comes in hues of summer colours.

The concept

Comfort with a classic and stylish look, perfect for the Indian weather.

Top trends

A strong push to the 1970s is pushing the tapered pant to the edge of the wardrobe and a more comfortable band is in demand.

Light colours with prints and the everlasting shades of white, combine beautifully to create the perfect men’s colour palette.

Styling tips

Keep the look fresh, focus on accessories and, most importantly, customize lifestyle design for your personality and avoid the generic.

Wardrobe must-haves

Start with colognes, stylish belt and priceless shoes.

The best dressed man

The Maharaja of Jodhpur, because from his family ethos came the breeches, the bandhgala and the achckan as we know it today.

Biggest fashion oversights

Being too sensitive to passing trends is not a good practice, one’s ability to create a style for his own personality is the best investment I can suggest.

VARUN BAHL

Bahl’s collection for the current season is in tune with the summers. Colours are subtle with tone on tone shades. The colour palette ranges from ivories, pale pinks, sky blues, blush pink and indigo—the in colour of the season.

The concept

Our Karan Johar + Varun Bahl (KJVB) collection for the season is focused on comfort yet, keeping it stylish. So we have loose pants for men, short kurtas, bandis in light silks and breathable cottons.

Top trends

A hint of pop or contrast detailing in the outfit. Use of contrasting colours in jacket lapels, collars, cuffs, plackets or even going in for a bright pair of socks or pocket squares. As for colours, men should experiment with cooler tones such as sky blues, blush pink and indigo.

Wardrobe must-haves

Some of the must-haves are sporty elements such as sneakers, jerseys and sports inspired garments. Distress denims and a white crew neck tee-shirt is a must have. Accessories such as bags, backpacks, sunglasses, and bucket hats top the list of must-haves. A pair of well-fitted dress shoes is a must, go for oxfords and brogues.

The best dressed man

I just feel a person’s attitude, confidence, and a well-fitted outfit that compliments their body and style makes all the difference.

Biggest fashion oversights

Most men are not aware of how a well-tailored suit, trouser, or shirt should fit and how a certain style should fall on them. Also Indian men mostly don’t play with colours or experiment with styles.

ANITA DONGRE

Dongre’s latest menswear collection is a fusion of fashionable elements and classic couture made of fine linen, she says. It is a collection of pure comfort, easily adapting itself in both—formal and off-duty looks.

The concept

There’s a fine line between suave fashionable men and those that are flamboyant. This collection bridges the gap between the suave sharp fashionable and the flamboyant.

Top trends

Delivering a sharp impact this season is the collarless shirt. So are linen shirts and trousers in vintage postcard prints. Men look men in neutrals, so a palette of that along with our festive burst of orange red, light copper, storm blue and saffron.

Style tips

Don’t be afraid of experimenting with fashion. Don’t try too hard on looking fashionable, it’s easy to differentiate between a man who tries hard and who tries too hard.

Wardrobe must-haves

Cufflinks are subtle yet an outfit’s crowning glory. A collarless shirt. Also, pocket squares.

The best dressed man

Abhay Deol. Effortless chic being the key element in his style.

Biggest fashion oversights

Poor sock choices. Coordinating belt and shoes. Some men are very ignorant as far as grooming goes, meaning hairstyle, cologne, facial hair, etc. This is primary for men. Also an inhibited fear of colours and prints.

KOMAL SOOD

Sood’s latest menswear collection, in her words, is airy and light and keeping in mind the summer temperatures in India... Looser silhouettes, draw string trousers, clean untucked shirts, prints and bright colours is what she has dabbled with for the latest collection.

The concept

The concept behind the collection was to use Indian fabrics and be inspired by beach towns such as Phuket, Mykonos, Bali and Ibiza.

Top trends

Prints and bright colours. Short-length trousers, clipped shirts...lots of Bermudas, linen suits, linen tuxedos, lightweight printed achkans. In terms of colours, burgundy, blue, olive green are hot.

Styling tips

Keep your look clean. Also try and contrast your clothes. Keep a stubble…grow your hair long…have it unkept…feel like you’re a free spirit…follow your heart. Don’t get bogged down by fashion nazis…

Wardrobe must-haves

Loafers, Gucci sunglasses, skinny jeans, singlets and low cut V-necks T-shirts, Tom Ford Portofino cologne, coloured skinny cotton chinos, linen shirts.

The best dressed man

There are so many of them. Varun Thapar, Karan Paul, Akarsh Gujral, Farhan Akhtar, Rahul Khanna, the list goes on.

Biggest fashion oversights

Men often overkill. They try too hard…they combine their clothes badly and they don’t concentrate on their hair enough.

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