HTSI editor’s letter: the menswear special takes its style cues from Dad
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This menswear issue is the fourth for which we have collaborated with the stylist Julian Ganio, and as ever it has given me much joy. Julian works with many major houses at the cutting edge of fashion, but my favourite stories are those where he puts human relationships to the fore. When first talking about this issue, he sent me a moodboard that featured images of fathers and sons. Most were fairly candid, many of the figures were well-known. What they captured, however, was the odd formality of the father-son dynamic and how that relationship was projected in the clothes they chose to wear. There was Marlon Brando, looking nothing like a matinee idol, grinning at his baby son. And the Prince of Wales, sweetly formal in a suit with princes William and Harry, dressed in loafers, knee socks and adorably shouty crimson shorts. Winston Churchill smiling in a long coat with astrakhan cuffs and a shawl collar alongside his son – barely adolescent but already grinning with entitlement – in a suit of pale-grey tweed. The pictures, even in the most formal compositions, offered a moment of emotional availability, tenderness and pride.
Working alongside photographer James Harvey-Kelly and casting director Tiago Martins, Julian has captured that same spirit for “The Family Man”, this week’s cover story introducing the new season’s styles. It’s an endearing portrait of the modern patriarchy, whether we’re looking at the three-month-old son of Mitchell Belk and his partner, James Clark-Belk, or the cover portrait of Julian’s nephew George and his grandfather Robin Beal, wearing Balenciaga (naturally).
Although big sartorial shifts in menswear are rarely as dramatic, or as capricious, as in women’s, there is no denying that this past year has seen significant change. Images of financiers returning to Wall Street after a long period of working from home find even the most rigid of dress codes finally relaxing as chinos, jeans and sneakers have now become more uniform, and ties are barely worn. A similar irreverence for what was once considered mandatory workwear has also crept into the City, which is more likely to be flashed with cycling Lycra than the traditional pinstripes of the banker boys. Aleks Cvetkovic examines the new high-low attitude, to find out how tailoring and sportswear have combined.
For those looking for more explicit direction on what to wear this autumn, I have two pieces of advice. Buy a poloneck. As evidenced by Steve McQueen, Miles Davis and, more latterly, at Prada, there are few things as chic as a man who knows just how to roll. Robert Armstrong offers his verdict with a round-up. And secondly, buy burgundy: as our shoot by Leon Mark and Evens JP Mornay makes clear, this season should see you dressed in 50 shades of wine.
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