Earlier this week I visited The Spring/Summer ’13 Capsule Men’s Show. Always a feast for the eyes, this season’s installment was full of proven heritage go-tos and refined delicacies for the discerning gentleman. There was an air of confidence among many brands- those whose images grace well-appointed tumblr feeds worldwide.
The influence of ye olde tumblr, and the internet’s available outlets for posting street wears from Rio De Janeiro to St. Petersburg showed, as many brands aim their sights on the ultimate street look.
Vintage surf culture is definitely on trend for SS13- one of my favorites examples was Reyn Spooner. Their hawaiin/polynesian print shirts use all original patterns from the company’s archive in Hawaii. Shirts are under $100 a pop available in slim and regular cuts and a vast array of colors and prints to choose. Their allure felt genuine and timeless, naturally appealing to old timey beach bums just as effortlessly as Wayfarer-wearing fashion dudes.
One more point that I want to graze briefly upon is the concept of “cerebral style”- Seen below on t-shirts from Via Spare and Sunspel. There is something intriguingly playful, ironic and self-defeating about these, like the “CREEPING” tee from Via Spare. Both feel odd, yet delightfully so. It is a funny place that fashion goes with items like these and a I saw more than a few examples walking around the show.
Orange Crush Exports
Capsule Men’s tradeshow hit New York earlier this week proclaiming loud and clear that menswear’s American heritage movement is alive and well. Brands like Hellers Cafe, Yuketen, Ovadia & Sons and Billy Reid being some of the bigger names, showcasing their latest goodies this time around.
As a veteran of the show (this was my 2nd), I couldn’t help but admire Capsule’s progress from six months ago. Of note this season was The Donut Shop greeting you upon entry and exit. This delightful pop-up shop gave attendees a chance for instant gratification from a number of vendors; a rare prospect at a trade show like this considering product is generally not available for purchase on the spot.
Last season, we honed in on the emerging trend of floral and effeminate prints and the implications of them infiltrating our macho wardrobes. This time around there were still a fair share, one in particular by Monitaly (featured below) that took first prize as my favorite piece of the show. But generally speaking for this season’s collections, designers appeared a bit less progressive in their offerings, choosing to build on what has been highly successful of late: American heritage inspiration.
Other top honors go to Ovadia & Sons, who’s collection truly captures the essence of the current menswear renaissance. Ovadia blends the perfect concoction of the old world gentleman mixed with what men today are looking for. The breadth of their assortment is also astonishing. It will take you from being the best dressed person in your office to being the best dressed person literally anywhere. Despite the fact that I have never tried anything of theirs on (a blunder that I will hopefully soon set right), I am truly sold.
An instant favorite and something a bit different was Lazy Oaf. A brand I know little about, but found refreshingly different from Capsule’s sea of distressed canvas, drab colors and work boots. Lazy Oaf felt young and vibrant and even a bit campy. I couldn’t help but gravitate towards their brightly colored 80’s new wave bold prints. You know… to add a bit of “pop” to my military drab inspired wardrobe.
Final thoughts: Nothing really knocked me out of my socks to be perfectly frank. I saw lots of incredible product and ideas, but nothing from the greater beyond. Disappointing, but also relieving to see that as the menswear renaissance heats up, labels appear to be wisely taking heed of the tortoises’s slow and steady result.
The one and only Mr. Delany of MyPantalones