Last summer we invited menswear bloggers Denny Balmaceda, Moti Ankari, Steven Onoja, Sam White, and Bobby Hicks to a tour the #JosephAbboud factory in New Bedford, MA, and observe the art of crafting a #JACustom suit. This season, they reunited to craft new custom suits in preparation for Joseph’s Fall/Winter 2017 runway show at #NYFWM, which was deeply inspired by the architecture of Gothic cathedrals and featured cinematic offerings of beautifully structured pieces and rich color palettes.
From corduroy to velvet, double-breasted to three-piece, each blogger was once again able to successfully express their unique style and personality through a #JACustom creation, which they wore to the premiere of Joseph’s Fall/Winter 2017 Collection at #NYFWM.
For a more in-depth look into each blogger’s #NYFWM experience, check out their individual blogs here:
The Joseph Abboud Fall/Winter 2017 Collection delves into new territory, taking a dark, mysterious turn. With a heady air that conjures the mood of an Edgar Allen Poe poem, this cinematic new collection draws upon the concept of the American Gothic, emphasizing dramatic silhouettes, saturated colors, and sumptuous textures. Oscar Wilde’s at once hedonistic and cautionary tale, The Picture of Dorian Gray, was also on my mind this season, leading me to ponder the immortal vanity of man.
This year marks the 30th anniversary of Joseph Abboud. With that in mind, designing my Fall range was a reflective and introspective process. We continue to celebrate the American man, American production, and the masculine individuality that is inherently Joseph Abboud. However, with each season, it is essential that I push and challenge myself to evolve the brand within its own DNA. This brooding, romantic collection does just that.
There is a ceremonious feel to this outing, hence our decision to hold the show in St. Stephen’s—a decommissioned church. In keeping with that theme, the palate begins with black, dark gray, aubergine, madder green, and stain glass blue, later evolving into a crisp crescendo of angelic ivory. I was deeply inspired by the striking architecture of Gothic cathedrals, which is reflected in the construction of the clothing—lapels are exaggerated, coats are sweeping, cape-like, and often lined with fur, and our signature Traced Fit™ is slightly relaxed to allow for ease of movement. A sense of grandeur carries over into the textiles, with rich jacquards, opulent brocades, knit herringbones, quilted leather, and water-stained velvet. Layering, too, is a focus, with a casual approach to cashmere turtlenecks and luxurious knits.
Fall upholds the tradition and caliber of Joseph Abboud, but also ushers in a dynamic new era. I invite you to lose yourself in this enchanting sartorial story, and to join me in relishing the darker side of beauty. —Joseph Abboud
On January 30th, Joseph Abboud will reveal his Gothic inspired Fall/Winter 2017 Collection at #NYFWM. As fate would have it, the premiere of this hauntingly beautiful collection will also mark the brand’s 30th Anniversary celebration.
In the days leading up to the big event, Joseph had the opportunity to discuss his newest collection with menswear blogger Moti Ankari. The two spoke in-depth about Joseph’s inspiration process, his favorite pieces and much more.
After our recent travels through Europe, it is evident that the more sophisticated menswear retailers have transformed their stores into theatre through creative merchandising and innovative displays. For most men, seeing is believing, and they are often attracted to displays and mannequins that are fully styled out. In many cases, they will buy the entire outfit as is, making it easy for the man who isn’t quite sure as to how he should be buying clothes or put himself together. Our goal is to wardrobe our customer from head to toe, help him solve his fashion needs, and have fun while doing it.
This can all be done with appealing color stories, interesting textural combinations, and well styled outfits. But it starts at the beginning when we as designers, merchants, and buyers decide what we will actually be showing our customers for the upcoming season, and then follow through on how we present it to them. That can often be the most challenging but most rewarding piece of the fashion puzzle.
Throughout my career, I’ve found that the best way to tell a style story and communicate with customers is through visual displays. They say that first impressions are lasting, and so it is when customers enter our stores for the first time and see how we present our collections. One picture may be worth ten thousand words, but when it comes to men’s fashion, if it’s not a good picture, they’ll never get past the first paragraph.” -JA
As we move through this era of the skinny suit, the logical progression in men’s fashion is to move in the opposite direction. While menswear never works well in the extreme, there is a definite movement toward easing up fits. This change is more gradual and gentle since “shape” remains important, but “tight” will soon be a thing of the past. In tailored clothing there is a relaxed and controlled fit giving a man more room and comfort in the chest, shoulders, and hip, while at the same time emphasizing shape at the waist.
Other benefits of this new, easier fit is the drape of beautiful fabric that traces the body and fluidly moves with you, which brings with it a studied ease to the attitude of a man’s outfit.
But this new direction isn’t just relegated to tailored clothing. Sportswear is also a little less restrictive with slightly more relaxed fits in soft jackets, sweaters, knits, wovens, and casual pants. The overall look is more comfortable, wearable, and ultimately the next big thing in menswear.
So, if we are loosening up, let’s do it gradually with logic, while also creating new, yet wearable fashion trends that men can live with. -JA
Euro Trad’ is one of the hottest new ideas coming out of Europe. Leading brands have recently transformed traditional menswear concepts so often associated with traditional American clothes, into richly textured and energized looks with global appeal.
Fabrics such as glen plaids, herringbones, and flannels are more aggressive and more exaggerated than their classic predecessors. These seasonal fabrics take the lead in creating an easy to understand, yet extremely fashionable direction for men.
This new Euro Trad’ idea permeates all other product categories as well. Tweed soft shoulder jackets with elbow patches, quilted vests, wool donegal ties, flannel shirts, and corduroy pants are paired together to bring a new heritage to the way men dress in perhaps one of the most fashion forward trends for the upcoming season.
Euro Trad’ has influenced how we define European fashion today. In the past, Europe gave us slick fabrics, hard looks, and clothes that didn’t appeal to the American man. Now, it is just the opposite. With a little creative courage, the trend clearly demonstrates that “traditional” doesn’t have to be boring. These new traditional looks with their trim silhouettes and exaggerated patterns are perfect for the American man who loves the heritage of traditional clothes and the innovation of design. -JA
Knit dressing has emerged as one of the fastest growth categories in menswear. Forever a perennial in womenswear, knitwear has now brought a new dimension to a man’s wardrobe in all product categories. While it may have started with sweaters, knit shirts, and the sweat pant, it can now be found in blazers, soft jackets, outerwear, vests, button front shirts, and even dressier casual trousers. With a mood toward loosening up, all these knitted pieces have rounder, softer silhouettes with high texture and greater comfortability for ease of movement and an overall relaxed look and feel.
Layering knits with wovens, as well as knits with knits, can add individuality and style points for men as they expand their sartorial horizons beyond their predictable (and often times, boring) outfit choices. And what truly makes knits so exciting for a man, especially with all of these richly colored yarns, innovative textured fabrics and the amazing comfort they offer…is not only the deconstruction of all those traditional clothes in his closet, but also his ability to break the rules while really looking good doing it. -JA
Men’s color is branching out to the new greens and the olive family is leading the way. These rich and intriguing tones are as varied as the clothing categories they color for Fall 2016. Starting with the exploding textural textiles permeating tailored clothing, olive has replaced many of the more traditional greens in herringbones, plaids, Donegals, flannels, and even clear finish worsteds. The effect is immediately more vintage and novel at the same time, giving the wearer a sense of heritage while adding a new color scheme to his wardrobe.
Of course, olive shades work beautifully in sportswear as well. Outerwear looks rugged and authentic in oil cloths and weather related fabrics…and washed sweater yarns and brushed cotton shirtings in olive inspired hues have a wonderful all American masculine sensibility. And the best part of this new color direction is that it’s easy to wear! What makes this beautiful olive palette so interesting in its recent iteration is the introduction of indigo blue. One of the most attractive (and perhaps one of the most unexpected), color combinations for men is olive and indigo. By adding denim and chambray to the mix, we create a new opportunity for them to expand their color horizons in a very understandable and stylish way.
For some unknown reason, olive is somehow a part of our genetic memory. Power, authority, and a little touch of the great outdoors is very appealing to most men even though many of them may never have worn olive before, and now they are ready to embrace it. -JA
Menswear changed dramatically in the mid sixties through the early seventies. In the fifties, men dressed with a dreary conformity in nebulous, shapeless suits with little or no personality. Then, seemingly out of nowhere, menswear is turned on its head and the Peacock Revolution begins on what are now some of London’s most recognized locations when it comes to men’s clothing…Savile Row, Kings Road and perhaps the most celebrated of all, Carnaby Street.
Nehru jackets, velvet suits, ruffled shirts and a gaudy helping of chains and medallions replaced those nondescript suits and airport coats almost overnight. Men’s fashion was wildly out of control yet never more exciting…that is, until now.
Today, men’s confidence is at an all time high when it comes to their sartorial sensibility and their appetite for all things fashionable. With this new freedom of self- expression, men are truly dressing up, adorning themselves with more aggressive, bolder patterned suits, paisley jackets, pocket squares, scarves boutonnières, tie bars, cufflinks, hats, and gloves. They now have a more liberated choice of clothes, prowess and stylistic individuality.
This redefined masculinity has energized menswear very much like the original Peacock Revolution did more than forty years ago, but this time around it is more controlled and infinitely more wearable. The new Dandyism we are experiencing is a testimony to the fact that more and more men have developed a truly sophisticated sense of style, and once again have the courage to step out and wear it. -JA