If we talk about the development of men’s fashion, the biggest change happened at the end of the 60s!
The World finally was starting to breathe again, and for the first time, people started to embrace “fashion” in its true form.
Men Fashion: The Era Of 60s
Men, that till the ’60s used to be really simple in their garment expressions lived a big change: sports, hobbies, interests, and fantasies merged all together.
If a normal man of the 60’s used to almost wear a sort of uniform made by basic, neutral colors with the end of the decade this aspect changed a lot.
This is the historical moment when we can really say started men fashion, men fashion styles and men fashion trends.
Men fashion style started to be more colorful, more casual, more sporty, and comfy.
For the first time in history, men fashion started to be, from some points of view, close to women’s fashion, and from a general point of view, we could indicate these years as the years of the beginning of men fashion.
Thanks to international bands like The Beatles more men discovered new ideas, new values, new dimensions, new styles.
As new men fashion trends, bright colors and the ethnical or fancy pattern started to be super popular, during the day, during the night, in working places as during concerts, men wanted to be seen, wanted to be appreciated for new reasons and their style, the men fashion styles, for the first time started to be one of these reasons.
Checked shirts, flowers, paisley fantasies arrived to impose themselves in everyday life, moving men fashion to a funnier, lighter but also more mysterious dimension: imagine to pass from a grey two pieces suit with a blue or white shirt and a basic gray tie to the same suit and shirts but with a tie with a flower pattern!
Those years were revolutionary for men, this new men fashion became also a way of communication for the first time, men started to express themselves through garments, following year after year the new men fashion ideas and they started to pay attention to the latest men fashion accessories, products.
We can say that the end of the ’60s has been the starting point of everything!
Men Fashion: The Era Of 70s
With the beginning of the 70’s nothing really change, we don’t live any huge change, the situation tends to remain unaltered. People were comfortable finally with these colors and shapes, why change them?
Men were finally had new possibilities, they finally had the power to express their emotions and ideas troughs clothes, why they would have wanted to be different?
This is the typical mentality of anyone who has something new for the first time!
As Italian, sometimes we make this example (because we really often talk about food!): the first time you try a Margherita, the basic pizza with just tomato sauce and mozzarella, why would you change? Why would you decide to risk having another pizza with more ingredients? And if you don’t like it?
But one day, someone who is bored by the taste tries something new and something different, that is the day where a new pizza is going to be created.
This is what happened in the middle of the ’70s, men fashion trends and men fashion styles started to be so common, so overseen, so popular, so.. “boring” that someone decided to do a new step, someone decided to create a new men fashion style with more and different garments.
Guess what happened!
Someone realized that was time to used the garments to give importance to men’s bodies, to help those bodies to talk, someone decided to create fluidity in the movements, and boom!
Like a bomb exploded over the cities new men fashion styles arrived from all over the places!
One of these latest men fashion trends was the flared trousers!!!!
New materials define the rest of the 70’s inside the men fashion trends but out of that, men fashion was still connected to the past, to this form of classicism, fancy, colored but not disruptive!
After the ’60s and their first step inside the man fashion world, the following big step was made at the beginning of the ’80s.
Men Fashion: The Era Of 80s
To describe the 80’s in the most proper way we have to underscore and use as an example what happened to the music industry, it evolved in two different directions: a darker one and the other one was exactly the opposite, simple, funny, popular.
The latest men fashion trends in those years were:
more introspective, more alternative and in this way we can say with darker shades;
more expressive, more social and for this reason more bright;
Were the years were the punk culture exploded and became really popular, even if it is something older, the gym culture but in a way, the sports culture moved outside the videos on tv into the buildings but also were the years where the power described by the movies was “hot”, intriguing and sophisticated.
The ’80s are the years where most people have used sunglasses, everywhere, on any occasion, in different colors, different shapes but they were one of the most important men fashion trends.
Another accessory that entered inside the closet of different men, an accessory that became fundamental inside the men fashion system, who described and still describe men fashion style is the suspenders.
Economic power, business, sophistication inside the work industry, fanciness but also a tool that was meaning contemporary, facing the future, new ways to do things, all of these idea condensed inside a simple object.
Movies started to show them all over, to indicate a super famous one, most of the time people who use Wall Street where Gordon Gekko in several scenes show them.
Pouches, spandex trousers, nylon gym suits with bright and almost neon colors entered inside the houses of all the athletic men.
Men started to desire to show more their bodies, tight pants with super peculiar patterns, bags that even men were able to use and go around with (the pouches) and colorful t-shirt and sweaters were used to have lights on them, to have a sort of garments emancipation.
If the ’80s were the years of empowerment using different garments, communicating about our feelings, our desires, our status, or our lifestyle the following decade did exactly the opposite!
Men Fashion: The Era Of 90s
The 90’s, with the end of the millennium, became the years of the extra-coziness.
It’s funny comparing these two decades because as long as they kind of maintain the same colors and shapes the meaning is completely the opposite, men fashion trends moved from focusing on “the show”, on the expression of feelings and ideas to a more calm and anonymous reality.
Men fashion style in few years became slow, lazy, chill, simple, large, extra-large.
Men fashion style started to be also a little bit more politicized/socialized, where garments started to be connected to specific ideas connected to our communities.
Messages, phrases, faces, and imagines of people started to be printed on garments, in a way where people were not obliged to talk to express something.
90’s where the years where also men fashion started to be absorbed by the generation through new channels, new media like the tv shows.
A really famous one for example was Beverly Hills 90210.
High wasted pants, a lot of denim, comfortable pieces, the life man wanted was more casual.
Casual was also the term that has described more this decade, men fashion styles became less aggressive, almost hiding the body, the shapes to move everything to a more conceptual reality.
Dialogues over the bodies.
With the end of the millennium, the men fashion trends and the men fashion styles of the ’90s but more in general of the previous decades end.
Something happens inside the fashion industry, something as always new, something disruptive, a new step for the men fashion: a new generation.
Back in the 60’s garments were produced for men and when I write men I mean people between 45 to 70 years old (even older!), these garments were targeting those people, for their ideas and values.
Younger men used to wear garments made using the ideas of the predominant generation.
Along the daces something curious happens with the development of the fashion, the lines, the shapes, the targets got younger, in the ’70s where people in their late 40ish, independent, with possibilities, with their desires of having fun and not think about the more conservative ideas of the previous generations.
In the 80’s the predominant generation was the one who was between the late 30ish and 40ish.
Men fashion trends and men fashion styles were focused on younger workers, younger athletes, younger people who were during those years facing new experiences.
During the 90’s we found the generation of the 30ish people, they ended the millennium but also they ended a generation, generation X.
And with the new Millenium what happened? It happened that a new generation “took control” of the fashion industry, men fashion, the latest men fashion trend, the latest men fashion styles started to be own but the men who were born between the ’80s and the first part of the ’90s, the generation who at that moment was in their 20ish or late 20ish.
How, a so young generation, could be able to dictate men fashion trends? What they could have wanted more?
Well in the first ten years of the new millennium the keyword to describe men fashion is memories.
Memories for what? Memories for what they never lived but their fathers or grandfathers did.
The industry came out with some garments that signed that decade like:
A milestone inside the wardrobe of any grandfather, typical back in the ’50s and ’60s. In this decade started to re-became popular, with a new life and a new style. Tv shows, movies, bands, visible people, everyone started to wear it, fresh, simple, a mix between a sweater and a pullover.
It was something that mixed a sort of classical idea of men fashion with a new more trendy and alternative reality.
A men fashion trend really loved from the nostalgia of the coziness of the ’90s and the sportiveness of the ’80s; the perfect combination of going around for a walk, be ready to do some activities but also able to go anywhere without using too much effort.
Men fashion moved also in a sort of nostalgia idea of military garments, redefined a product, used by the soldiers in a more fitting way, in a more fancy version to create a sort of fashion soldier able to walk everywhere.
If the tracksuits were the nostalgic version of coziness and sport, this new popular man fashion style exploded in the decade.
It was full of the freedom used from the old skaters, full of independence but also more globalized, more shared by people from all over the planet. During those years only one other style because as popular as this one.
Graffiti Inspired Urban Wear
If the skater one was for everyone who wanted to face the sun, this men fashion trend style was more hidden, reserved, mysterious, the perfect mix of the punk movements of the 80’s and messaging culture of the ’90s.
Hats, garments with people, tags our phrases, expression of ideas, stronger accessories were part of this trend.
The Last Decade
And what about the last decade? The decade closer to us, the one that has just finished?
The last decade inside the men fashion industry has been dedicated to a new theme, utility.
Any garments inside the men fashion style of this decade were created to respond to a specific need, new useful shoes to merge different situations, let’s think about the white sneakers, perfect to be used even under the most elegant suit; the jackets or the sweaters with bigger pockets, a need to have more spaces for the higher quantities of object men had to use/bring; digital accessorized that could have helped many men in his life, men fashion evolved from something used to express to something used for a specific need.
Materials shapes, colors started to study no more for ideas connected to the personality but for ideas connected to men’s lives.
How will be this decade instead? How do you see the new men fashion trends or men fashion styles?