Fashion is full of different styles, trends, stereotypes and buzzwords. Here at Keep Fronting, we don’t feel that it’s our role to categorise our clothes or the people who wear them; we want to leave the versatility of style in your hands. However, there is no harm in knowing what these categories/definitions are to help you define your own style. Here is a quick fashion glossary giving an overview to some of the key styles you may hear about.
Formal dressing is the starting point of every man’s wardrobe whether you like it or not. Needed for special occasions, certain establishments and in some cases; a work dress code. In simple terms, wearing a good suit and tie combination would fit you into the formal clothes category. To try and inject some individualism into a formal look, accessories such as cufflinks, pocket squares all assist. Picking a good suit with a unique cut or material also help the formal dresser to stand out.
The hipster style or trend is a mixture of everything that is in fashion right now. It’s a bit preppy, a bit vintage, a bit indie – it can even be a bit urban. As a glossary term, a hipster is maybe a type of person rather than a style of dressing. They tend to be early and staunch adopters of fashion trends, such as black thick rimmed glasses and regular fit chinos. The sometimes negative connotation of hipsters can be due to the ‘too cool’ image that can be conveyed on occasion but there is no doubt that a hipster is a fashion conscious individual.
If being a hipster is about being an individual but remaining on trend, dressing the indie way is about being individual and not caring about trends. It’s a style favoured by Brit rockers such as the Arctic Monkeys. Worn and frayed jeans, fitted jackets & coats. Faded t-shirts and slightly scruffy, maybe even vintage styled clothing, the indie style is un-intentionally stylish and is the precursor to the hipster and vintage styles.
An American style categorised by college style sweaters, collars and chinos. Bold colours are often used but equally, preppy clothing can be in neutral colours. The preppy style is almost a ‘pre-professional’ style, so dressers will look almost formal in their appearance with a playful twist. At some stage in fashion history, the preppy look may have been considered slightly nerdy but now it takes the slightly ironic cool angle in the male fashion world.
Sometimes referred to as street style, urban clothing is normally ultra casual and heavily stylised. Its popularity is in wearing something that feels like good quality for every day use. Colours and logos are usually bigger and brighter and fits are usually relaxed. These days, urban clothes are bridging the gap between every day wear and smarter but still casual attire.
Some people may see retro and vintage as similar styles. In some senses, this isn’t a style but more of a description. Anything can be vintage; often this is to do with its origin. There are now plenty of used clothes shops calling themselves vintage boutiques. However, the vintage look could easily be a heavily faded t-shirt, a worn leather jacket or something that feels more like English heritage style clothing.
The overlap in categories and styles show just how versatile men’s fashion has become. Anything can be pigeon holed if you want it to be, but when it comes to something as personal as your style, why would you not allow yourself the choice to draw inspiration from wherever you find it? Are there any styles of clothing that we have left out that you draw your inspiration from?
Sixth photograph by Rocawear