How To Wear The Embroidery Trend
Make sure the others aren’t a patch on you by getting the finer – and finely stitched – details just right.
There’s a palpably nostalgic mood to the AW16 collections, in which designers are continuing a long-running love affair with 1970s kitsch and charity-shop style, led by Mr Alessandro Michele at Gucci. As part of this deepening commitment to clothes that look well-loved, personalised and thoroughly heirloom-like, we’re seeing a lot of embroidery, particularly of the floral variety. This not being a traditionally masculine form of embellishment, it’s not perhaps immediately obvious how to carry it off with style and discretion. So we’ve put together the following guide. Follow these three tips to make sure you have the look all stitched up.
THE STEALTH OPTION
Though much of the embroidery on offer this season is of the colourful, rather in-your-face variety, there is a subtler way to approach it. Opting for a piece such as the Gucci T-shirt here, which features a black-on-black embroidery design, is an easy way to wear the trend with less of the fuss. What’s more, with its monochromatic palette, it will go with anything – sling a denim jacket over it and you’re done.
PLAY WITH CONTRASTS
Sportswear is athletic, urban, modern. Floral embroidery is louche, nostalgic, opulent. The two, in fact, are polar opposites, which is why they work so well together in this sweatshirt from Alexander McQueen, an edgy British house that is always excellent at striking a balance between toughness and romanticism. Because this is a rather headily floral piece, we would suggest you continue to play up the sport element with a pair of drawstring wool trousers from LA’s John Elliott.
We can thank hipsterism for the general consensus that it’s perfectly acceptable to indulge in a certain amount of sartorial kitsch, as long as you do it knowingly. It’s in this spirit that this season’s Saint Laurent collection references the sort of clothes you find in thrift stores, such as this excellently rodeo-worthy zip-up jacket, embellished with a Western yoke and floral embroidery. What lifts this above historical curiosity is the fabrics (satiny cotton for the outer, silk for the lining) and cut (sharp, sleek and slim, as you might expect), both of which make this a perfectly wearable piece within a rock- or vintage-inspired look. The best way to bring out its to-hell-with-it cool is to pair it with some of brand’s distressed skinny jeans and some 1970s-style sneakers, such as the ones on offer from Raf Simons x Adidas Originals.