Often I have irritatingly found myself slightly ahead of curve with my fashion fetishes – by the time the majority have caught up, I’m already onto the next thing which has yet to become cool and my interest in it appears to just come out of left field (although my fascination with houndstooth evolved from Gwen Stefani’s use of the pattern, which I think is totally reasonable – the rest of the world was just inexplicably slow to pick up on it). Reading the London Evening Standard last night , I found an article heralding the excitement of leopard print in menswear. *FACEPALM*
For the last couple of years, I have scoured high street shops for some interesting animal prints (NB: this is vastly different to my hatred for animal motifs) to no avail. But now, as the Evening Standard suggests, they are infiltrating popular fashion (although not to a particularly flattering effect if you go by what’s emerged on the high street so far). It also irritatingly notes that it is “undoubtedly best saved for the youthful, [and] looks best combined with elements of streetwear” – well, I’m not getting any younger and I’d like to have a piece or two while I am still young! Of course, designers were incorporating animal prints into menswear a lot earlier (peep Givenchy’s leopard print trousers as worn by Garrett Hedlund on the cover of W above… 2 years ago), but budget-wise luxury fashion is sadly not really an option. Here are the current affordable choices:
While ASOS’ grey and blue sweatshirt mutes the bite of the print somewhat more than I would like, it is definitely wearable. Less so is this dip dye sweatshirt by Topman, which is fine until you scroll down. The blue is unwarranted and comes out of nowhere to ruin a perfectly good garment.
Cheesy as they might be, the leopard-print boxer briefs below make me smile and are something I would totally wear for a sense of mischief and fun. I also like the leopard print camo t-shirt, which combines two potentially audacious and clashing prints into something subtle, masculine and totally wearable. To be honest, I can’t understand how this t-shirt and the dip-dye sweatshirt could both come from the same brand in the same season.
I can’t find much more on offer from the UK high street at the moment (H&M’s website continues to MAKE INTRIGUING PROMISES THAT ITS STORES DON’T KEEP *ahem*), but I am certain that by the summer, the other major stores will all be stocking leopard-print. I am impressed with Topman’s efforts (it’s very rare that I compliment Topman!) and I hope that the other high-street chains will combine verve with sophistication (and I pray that I never lay eyes on a leopard-print onesie. But I’m pretty sure that at some point, that will happen too). Hey: I’m an optimist!
ADDENDUM 27/1/13 – http://fashionablymale.net/2013/01/26/cattish/
See? Zara and Accessorize are getting in on the act too! (This is good news, I think 🙂 )