Men like clothes just as much as women. Try shopping for menswear in almost any city, though, and it hardly feels like the case. For example, a recent trip to Leeds' Corn Exchange yielded the discovery of at least 10 'vintage' or 'boutique' shops for women, yet the only two that stocked menswear contained a few leather jackets and a selection of logo T-shirts. The other shops stocked handmade jewellery, upcycled outfits and a sartorial feast which ranged from wearable to bonkers - all exclusively for women. This was even more frustrating considering that the day began with a trip to Harvey Nichols which stocked some mouthwateringly brilliant pieces; Raf Simon's amazing holographic high-tops and Givenchy's eye-catching prints were proof that menswear clearly offers a wider range for those with a fat bank balance. This was further re-iterated by a trip to Vivienne Westwood and the opportunity to play dress-up in brilliantly charismatic clothes that I would love to wear but, alas, cannot afford. I began to think about the rapid evolution of the menswear industry and the progress being made; why is this progress not reflected on the high street?
With London Collections: Men gradually becoming one of fashion's most talked about events and menswear designers announcing bigger profit than ever, it is clear there is an enormous gap in the market for young men that aren't afraid to take sartorial risks. These men are important - fashion is a reflection of society, and today's technologically-minded society is driven by youth. A brief look at the most recent Fashion Weeks reveals that the most interesting names in menswear tend to be either unknown or underrated - whereas big brands like Prada and Dolce & Gabbana stick to their commercial codes, fresh faces are busy redefining the way that we dress. This post is a manifesto - a call to arms for these young designers to kickstart the new New Wave of Fashion. From now on, the focus of this blog will be shifted to new designers, and used as a platform to promote these innovators by looking at their working process and exploring the ideas behind their collections. It will also be a place to explore the styling elements of menswear, used to stifle the immediate fear that springs to mind whenever we hear words such as 'skort', 'PVC' or 'pastel' and show that the wearability of trends is defined by the individual, not the designer. It's an exploration of the finest minds in the industry, an advertisement for the commercial possibilities of left-field menswear and an endorsement of the young talent making a marriage between avant-garde sensibilities and commercial revenue a dream slowly becoming reality.