If you frequent the widely popular blogs such as The Satorialist and Jak & Jil or love browsing through the street-style section of fashion magazines, there is a high chance that you have seen shots of a particular gentleman who is usually decked out in bright, bold and colorful ensemble. No biggie if you haven’t, because today we will together savor the style awesomeness that is Simone Marchetti, the fashion editor for La Repubblica and Affari & Finanza in Italy and, in my opinion, one of the most fashionable men out there. Someone once said something along the line of “he’s the male version of Anna Dello Russo”, and I have to say that he/she really hit the nail on the head. Unlike David Beckham who showcases a consistently casual, approachable yet dashing style, Simon Marchetti displays a penchant for vibrant colors and bold prints as well as a knack for impeccable color coordination. To me, however, his style goes a whole mile further than just being visually captivating. Looking at the way he is unapologetically himself when it comes to dressing and seems to be having a lot of fun with fashion, it reminds me of why I love fashion in the first place. Fashion has a lot more to do with self-expression and individuality. Coming from a third world country in South East Asia where conformity is ingrained ever since we are still in our mother’s womb, it is an almost daily struggle to just be able to voice your opinions that slightly deviate from the purported “norm”. So, the idea of expressing your style and yourself through what you wear is more peculiar than novel, and one surefire way to be bullied and ridiculed. Even in the West where the surge of well-dressed men is well-documented in this article by Guy Trebay on T Magazine, let’s not deny that well-dressed men still do not earn the same kind of recognition that women do. Anyway, I seem to digress. Let’s move on to the sartorial lessons that Mr. Marchetti can school the populace.
1. When you go bold, you go simple: If there is a man whom I have seen in my short 24-years of existence who truly masters the art of colors and prints, it’s undoubtedly Simone Marchetti. Be it shirts, pants, jackets or coats, he never seems to shy away from the brightest colors and prints imaginable. But when you decide to go all daring like that, how to not let the colors or prints get the better of the outfit? In other words, how to keep yourself from looking like a walking fashion clown? As Mr. Marchetti shows us, the key is to keep the rest of the outfit light and simple, or at least coordinated with the bold part. Black is the easiest route to go obviously, because almost any color goes well with black.
2. Pajama-inspired pants: I have to admit this is the look that certainly warrants the “don’t try it at home kids” warning because it is extremely difficult to pull off without first and foremost, growing another pair of balls, and then finding the appropriate (and expensive-looking) pants. I have no clue which brands those pajama-inspired pants he has on in the pictures are from, but my guess is by some Italian high-end designers. This type of pants was never a staple in the wardrobe of an ordinary man, but if you are fashion-conscious, give these a shot because Marc Jacobs, Raf Simons, Louis Vuitton and Dries Van Noten just to name a few, all incorporated this luxurious and silky slouchiness in their collections this season. The key to keep yourselves from looking like you have just rolled out of bed is: keep whatever on the upper part of your body manly and sharp. It can be a crisp white shirt, a simple blazer or a double-breasted coat. 3. Pay attention to details, or accessories: Simone Marchetti really hammers the point of accessories home to me. I am so horrible at it that I am completely guilt-stricken on saying it again on my blog, but accessories or some quirky details can amp up and bring your outfit to the next level. When Mr. Marchetti goes dapper or understated with his outfit, he makes sure that it is not boring by adding details that end up elevating the outfit altogether. Do you see how the bulky and long scarf complements the suit, and makes the whole look much more interesting? Or how the electric blue bag pops up the neutral-tone outfit? It all lies in the details. 4. When in doubt, go color-coordinated: Is it just me or the madness over the colors-clashing or crazy-prints mixing need to recede and we re-appreciate the ton-sur-ton look? People might say that it is playing safe or boring, but I personally find it truly sophisticated and stylish even though I love me some color-blocking in the way. Proof below.
5. Take some sartorial risks and have fun with fashion: That is the ultimate purpose of fashion, really. Whether it being a cape, a camo jacket, a suit paired with sneakers or studded shoes, do not be afraid to dress in something that is a little bit out of your comfort zone or out of the ordinary. You might not land a spot on the best-dressed list, and quite likely receive some head-shaking on the streets, but if you are having fun and feeling good about it, why care? Everyday life is mundane enough, so let what you wear throw some of the banality away.