Everybody who knows me knows that Men’s Fashion Week is officially my favorite holiday. I can practically feel the butterflies fluttering in my stomach the minute I hear the familiar sound of trolley suitcases on the cobblestone streets of le Marais, and see all the cute international hipsters struggling to locate their Airbnb rentals. Overnight, every gallery space in the hood becomes a showroom, packed with identical men in big black bombers and cropped black pants worn with white socks and trainers, topped with black beanies and perfectly groomed black Jesus beards. This, my friends, is the uniform. Break it and you might not get into La Perle.
While the streets don’t offer much variety, the runways are a whole other story. With each season, designers get a wee bit craftier in their approach to the men’s collections, permitting themselves the most colorful little gender line-blurring experiments on their army of prepubescent man-children. And so, I present to you a review of some of the more interesting shows of the season, sprinkled with some commentary of a Straight Male Fashion Friend who happened to be hanging out with me while I was writing this post.
The New Gucci Man (Grandfather? Grandmother?)
He wears ribbons! And bows! And berets! And lace! He’s like your grandmother but in a boyfriend! This is fabulous. There is so much stuff you can do together, knitting definitely being one of them. I think Alessandro Michele is about to change men’s fashion in a way that even Hedi Slimane never managed to, not only removing any semblance of testosterone from men, but also Benjamin Buttoning them into newborn-geriatric hybrids. Bravo!
Straight Male Fashion Friend, lounging on his bed in a pair of fancy red socks, agreed that no man can actually wear these clothes, as they are “pussy clothes”. “There is a ¾ sleeve sweater and a blouse with a pussy bow underneath. A pussy bow.” And I’m talking about a guy who can pull off a lot of things, fancy red socks being one of them.
Saint Laurent by Hedi Slimane, aka Warhol’s Factory is Back in Business
Lets just say this: the Gucci man almost gave the Saint Laurent man balls. Almost, but not quite. Great stuff if your boyfriend is a Brooklyn-based musician who sustains himself entirely on a gluten-free-lactose-free-calorie-free diet comprised of one cucumber a day. Or if you have a Studio 54 fetish and want to do creepy Andy and Edie reenactment every day of your life. P.S. I’m getting a feeling that berets for boys are really in. I can get them in bulk in Montmartre for a bangin’ price of 2 euros a pop if you’re interested.
Straight Male Fashion Friend claims that Slimane is “f*cking cool” and that every time he tries on the jackets they look “brilliant” on him (humble, mate), however he cannot buy them because they cost roughly 3 times his rent. He’s never tried on the pants and I hope he never does because he may not fit into the sample for the first time in his life.
Givenchy aka Dawn of the Dead
This is great – it takes me straight back to the time I my mom enrolled me in a Yeshiva for a few months, where I discovered the magical world of payots. It also takes me back to the Istanbul Grand Bazaar, where a man in a patterned kurtis a made me sip tea with him for two hours while convincing me to become his second wife. Dating this man is like dating a businessman cross-dressed as Frankelstein cross-dressed as a Rabbi crossed-dressed as a Native American monk. Fashion globalization at its finest, if you ask me.
Straight Male Fashion Friend gives me a one-liner: “The devil wears Givenchy.” Am I sure he’s straight?
The (Very Posh) Valentino Man
The Valentino Man is sharp and polished and dauntingly intimidating, and much, much better dressed than you.. He’s the man who notices that your nails have gone sans manicure for weeks, and that you have gained 2 pounds, and that your favorite Zara cashemere sweater should be replaced this season. He is also probably an OCD freak who color-codes his shirts and twirls wine around in a glass for ten minutes before taking a sip and sending it back. He likes his women quite perfect, walking tha fine line between straight and gay that only models can survive. For the rest of us mere mortals, he is best admired from afar.
Boyfriend alert! Every guy here is deviantly delectable to me and my creepy, not-s0-closeted hipster fetish. (In fact, I would like my tombstone to say “Give me your dirty, your long-haired, your unshowered and hygiene-challenged….”) And, judging from the way this collection broke the Internet last week, my boyfriends are certainly trending. On a side note, the Style.com review started with a Rick Owens quote: “I built the company on me pissing in my mouth.” Since I like to think that I’m building the budding powerhouse of Dbag Dating by (figuratively) doing the same, the man is officially my hero.
Straight Male Fashion Friend immediately quips “Ds on Display”, after which he offers to show me his own D. I decline, as I generally don’t like to go near those. He calls me a D-hater, opening up a whole new debate.
Dior Homme aka le Gentillome
Finally, a man you can bring home to the family! Unless you happen to belong to a family of zoo animals such as my own (not you, Mom & Dad, just the rest of us), which would probably scare the kneesocks off this young gentleman. As usual, Kris van Assche presented us with a polished young intellectual who has sh*t together and doesn’t need to resort to cutting out peepholes in his briefs to feel cool. Also, something about the live string orchestra on the runway felt very Theory of Everything, and I’m currently very into Theory of Everything so I’m very into this.
Straight Male Fashion Friend likes the “combination of formality and informality” and wants to steal the checkered coat. I think about how convenient it would be to date him becuase my wardrobe would double. (My jean size is bigger though.)
And now, what did YOU think? Let’s talk about it!!
All images via Style.com