Granted, it’s still spring and far cry from beer garden and BBQ season just yet. However, to ensure you bring your A-game when the sun finally returns, this is a good time to start giving your warm-weather wardrobe some careful thought.
As you’re probably already aware, blindly following fads is not an effective way to spice up your style. There are some seasonal style trends to be shopped and certain others that are better off dropped. Being able to tell the difference is what separates the boys from the men.
But it’s no easy feat. What you really need is some sort of handy guide – and luckily enough, we’ve made one. From retro sneakers to your next trim, here’s Ape’s official Spring/Summer 2019 Style Guide.
Key Trend: The Great Outdoors
A camping holiday in the Pennines may seem like an unlikely place to pick up fashion cues. That’s because it is. Nevertheless, outdoorsy staples are dominating menswear this summer with everything from hiking sandals to anoraks receiving stylish updates thanks to some of the world’s top designers.
Of course, we’re not suggesting you should start dressing like Bill Oddie. Far from it. Instead, make subtle mountain-friendly wardrobe tweaks: a few extra pockets here and there, from the likes of Engineered Garments; a fashion-tinged utility backpack courtesy of a Japanese luggage legend like Master-Piece; or a wind- and waterproof shell jacket from an outdoors specialist such as Patagonia or The North face.
Key Colour: Lime Green
Nobody is going to claim lime green is an easy colour to wear. It’s not. But that doesn’t change the fact that it’s everywhere. And we mean everywhere – the streets, the runways, the beaches. Even the slopes are awash with it.
Again, restraint is key when it comes to getting it right. Pick garments with subtle accents, as opposed to full head-to-toe outfits. If streetwear’s your thing, you could go bigger in the form of a statement hoodie or bomber jacket. Just make sure there’s only one piece per outfit so people don’t need to permanently wear their sunglasses around you.
Key Piece: Camp-Collar Shirt
The camp-collar shirt’s status as a warm-weather essential isn’t anything new. Still, year after year, it continues to hold its place as the one thing you need in your summer rotation above all else. It’s breezy, it’s timeless and you can go as stand-out or stripped back as you want with it. Perfect.
Key Fabric: Seersucker
Fleece and corduroy have stolen the show for the last half of the year. Now it’s time for something lighter to take over.
This puckered, all-cotton fabric is airy, breathable and lends itself nicely to anything from a camp-collar shirt to a full summer wedding suit. If you were worried about bursting into flames at a friend’s July nuptials, seersucker offers a stylish solution.
Key Cut: Double-Breasted
In what could be described as a surprising turn of events, double-breasted jackets are cool again. So if you’d been putting off getting one, now’s the time to invest.
It’s good news for bigger guys, too, because not only is this throwback tailoring gem striking and stylish, it’s also flattering if you have a larger midriff. Historic Italian tailoring houses Brunello Cucinelli and Boglioli have some great premium options. Or, if you’re on a tighter budget, Suitsupply and Oliver Spencer have some accessible versions in beautiful summer-ready fabrics. Whichever you opt for, remember to take it to your local tailor (or avail the brand’s in-house service) so it fits you like a glove.
Key Outerwear: Trench Coat
You may be thinking summer isn’t the best time to invest in a new coat, but in unfortunate places like the UK, rain can come at any time. A classic beige trench coat offers a perennially stylish way to keep yourself dry, all year round.
Key Accessory: Sac De Cou/Neck Pouch
If you’re a fan of how men’s luggage just keeps getting smaller and smaller then you are going to love this micro trend. The neck pouch – or sac de cou, if you want to be all French about it – is this summer’s must-have menswear accessory.
It may be small in size, but in style terms, it’s big enough to shift your entire outfit up a gear.
Key Hairstyle: Mid-Length Textured Waves
Short hairstyles have ruled the tonsorial roost for as long as we can remember. However, as everything in fashion continues to get bigger, something similar is taking place in the world of men’s haircuts.
Mid-length locks are the way to go this summer. Whether you have wavy or curly hair, the approach is the same: keep the styling relaxed and completely natural. Spritz a salt spray or leave-in conditioner into damp, freshly washed hair, then let it dry naturally and fall into place.
For inspiration, look to the likes of Timothee Chalamet, Dev Patel and Kit Harington.
Key Footwear Style: Colourful Retro Runners
Brightly coloured, retro track shoes are back and we couldn’t be happier about it. The re-release of the Nike Tailwind in several bold colourways pushed this style back into the spotlight late last year. Meanwhile, the Oregonian brand’s collaboration with Japanese luxury label Sacai in the shape of the Waffle Daybreak has been one of the most hotly anticipated sneaker drops in recent history. This summer is the time to get involved.
Key Swimwear Trend: Safety Orange
Pale guys rejoice. Finally, there’s a swimwear trend that will complement your skin tone. Carrying over from the wider 1990s trend, luminous swim shorts are going to be having a moment this summer. Safety orange is a bold and bright shade that has a wonderful way of making even the pastiest of us appear a little more bronzed. Whether you opt for patterned or solid block colour is up to you.
Key Fragrance: Byredo Unnamed
Originally launched in 2016 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Swedish luxury house, Byredo’s famous Unnamed scent is back again.
The lack of a name is meant to allow the customer to come up with their own interpretation of the perfume. And although it was released in January, it’s an earthy, green fragrance that perfectly chimes with the arrival of spring.
£160 for 100ml; Liberty London