Fashion moves at a breakneck clip — blink too slowly and you might miss it. Increasingly rapid trend cycles and microcosmic fads that burn out as quickly as they erupt have all but decimated the meat and potatoes of menswear, and as such have made it immensely difficult to get a handle on what exactly is going on with fall style and what rules you should still be paying attention to.
Not to fear — InsideHook is here to hold your hand through the difficult process of fall fashion. From respecting the classics to ignoring age-old adages about the viability of browns and blacks, we’ve updated the old-school canon of fall-style rules for the year of our lord 2022. Below, 10 style dos and don’ts for the upcoming autumnal season.
Do: Mix Black and Brown (Or Any Color, Really)
The biggest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world of men’s style that black isn’t a universal color. Much like its white antithesis, the blank slate that a true black provides isn’t just invaluable, but an appropriate base for virtually any color. The combo of black and brown is especially thrilling for fall, and labels like Todd Snyder and Corridor are leading the charge in undoing the taboo, combining the two shades across their roomy autumnal offerings.
Don’t: Ditch the Classics
Corduroy, comfy knits, hefty work boots: fall is full of fun styles that we’ve missed all summer long. Why deprive yourself of the joys of fall dressing by trying to chase the latest trend? Tried and true styles that lean into the core of fall dressing — workwear, prep etc. — are the way to go.
Do: Push Pleats
Say it with me: pleats are cool. We don’t know how, we don’t know why, but somewhere along the line, those excess pilings of fabric feel out of fashion…and that’s okay, because everyone makes mistakes. Thankfully, they’re now back in a big way, and we are downright bullish on a massive pair of pleated trousers. You should be, too — Alex Mill’s relatively inexpensive take is at a great entry point for anyone still getting comfortable (or reacquainted).
Don’t: Be a “Sneaker Guy”
There are many, many great sneaker options, which I will routinely discuss the best ones with anyone who will listen at great length. That being said, do not ignore the variety of stellar footwear at your disposal. Lugged boat shoes, chunky loafers, devilishly durable work boots; they’re all there, ripe for the wearing. Don’t miss out.
Do: Wear Shorts (Sensibly)
Shorts are okay. Really. Reject the idea that your cutoffs are cut off come September. In fact, I’ll postulate that fall proves one of the best times to rock 7″ inches, its ever-cooling temps making the hoodie-shorts dream a blissful reality. This is not to say that you shouldn’t still consider what type of thigh huggers you’re tossing on. Corduroy? Great. Cargo? Not so much. But in general, get out there and show the world what you and your legs are made of this fall.
Don’t: Ignore the Weather
That being said, don’t be that guy in a short sleeve shirt when the weather dips from cool to freezing. Fall brings its owe set of challenges, chief among the inclement weather, and to discount that would be foolish. Be prepared with the appropriate wardrobe or risk looking like an idiot (and maybe catching a nasty cold, too).
Do: Lean Into Suiting
Tailoring is back, baby! From the funky European menswear of Séfr and Husbands Paris to the relaxed tailoring of Brooklyn-based Stòffa to the nuevo-prep offerings at Brendan Babenzian’s J.Crew, there is an abundance of tasteful fall-ready suiting just waiting to be worn. With a return to office on the horizon and fall weddings galore, there should be ample opportunity to bust out your new digs, too.
Don’t: Bet the House on GORP
Conversely, while GORP has been a driving theme in menswear for the past few years, the hype surrounding technical outdoor gear seems to be cooling down a touch. A good, weatherproof jacket — Arcteryx or Japanese label And Wander are the prime culprits for best shells — is still essential, but think twice before you pull the trigger on that $400 teched-out gilet.
Do: Have Fun With It
Now we’re getting down to the real brass tacks. When it comes to menswear, fall is the most versatile season, and you should treat it as such. Whether you count yourself as a staunch uniformist or an experimental extremist, wear clothes that you like this fall — it’s that simple.
Don’t: Neglect Fit
It should go without saying, that above all, fit is king. You could follow every single do and don’t on this list to a t, and it still won’t matter if your wardrobe doesn’t fit you. Invest time into taking your measurements (there are guides to this literally everywhere) and if you don’t believe you’re up for the task, hit up your local tailors, instead.
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