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Ex-Oxford University student Anusha Couttigane is a London-based fashion consultant regularly featured in the national press and an ever-present profile at Oxford Fashion Weeks.

Fashion for Men: New Season Styles for the Oxford Shopper

Anusha Couttigane

So not every bloke is a Colin Firth or an Idris Elba, but that doesn’t mean one can’t dress like them, especially when British men’s fashion is reaching a peak of slick, suave creativity. This year’s trends are easy to replicate and, with historical influences and quintessential British features, some of them are just begging to be worn in Oxford.

Take the white trouser trend that will be sweeping the nation come spring: as the old American adage goes, “nobody wears white after Labor Day”. Well, apparently no one informed our Yankee cousins that white trousers are set to be one of the biggest menswear trends over summer ’16. What’s more, white wash styles like jeans and chinos are perfect for those “English gentleman abroad” outfits. For instance, cream jeans from Next are easy to team with t-shirts, shirts or even a cheeky chambray blazer. They also go perfectly with chocolate brown brogues that Men’s at Dune calls “Rower”. I mean, how could you not? White shorts from River Island are straight out of an Evelyn Waugh novel, clinching the ‘casual cricketer’ look. Just pair with a pair of Dune “Idris” sandals.

Now, if white isn’t your colour, or is simply too impractical for you, go for green instead. Olive shades suit most skin tones and work well for all kinds of products, from coats to sunglasses. D&G’s aviator-style sunglasses always add a subtle splash of colour and are a good springthrough- to-summer investment, while an olive Barbour Bedale waxed jacket will help you blend in while capering in the Cotswolds. So far we’ve played it cool and casual, but there are definitely a few more flamboyant trends pervading the menswear industry this year.

In particular, we dare to suggest that florals have a big (bright) role to play in men’s fashion. Everyone from D&G to Gucci says so. Yet this dandy trend is so much more at home in Oxford, where George Brummel was credited with making ‘dandy’ the dernier cri during his days at Oriel College.

What’s more, it’s an opportunity to nail two trends – Florals and Androgyny - with one stone. New brand TRNDSXL promotes gender neutrality by producing unisex garments. While most of its lines are more muted, its dark fruit prints also embrace a bit of retro flare. Definitely one of the sassier styles to pull off, but perfect for both the avant-garde androgynist and the mod-loving lad.

Oxford’s historical architecture provides the perfect excuse to dress like a quintessential Victorian gentleman all year round, so we reckon it’s OK to mention the turn-of-the-century printed suits from Joshua Kane Bespoke coming out for AW16. Newcomer Kane has worked for pioneering brands like Paul Smith and Burberry Prorsum – and he’s clearly picked up a few tailoring tricks along the way. So, if you add just one thing to your wardrobe this year, make it a snappy printed suit.

 

- Anusha Couttigane