The concept of androgyny isn’t alien to a woman’s wardrobe. It very well knows how to make a woman feel sophisticated, powerful and sexy. However, there is more to androgyny than a male tuxedo suit, a collared shirt or boyfriend jeans. It’s not even about a pixie haircut or wearing detachable collars around a flirty dress.
The association of androgyny is traditionally done with the aforementioned items of clothing, and women tend to only swim between the flags when it comes to dressing like a man. Even though the coming season will be injected with soft, feminine androgyny, there is capacity for severe risk-taking.
Androgyny in womenswear is born from men’s fashion trends, so it only makes sense if we, at Fashionising.com, highlight those trends for you and present more options for your moments of styling sessions.
We’ve put together inspiration from the recent men’s spring 2013 runway shows and come up with the top 10 androgynous looks that every woman can wear right now. Of course, you can’t wear the exact looks from the runway, for obvious fitting reasons, but this sure is your go-to checklist to master your favourite androgynous look for the coming season.
Send your white shirt and black pants on a holiday, and come on this androgynous journey with us.
Disclaimer: The looks below are to inspire women, however, if you’re a man and are reading this, do take notes on the spring / summer trends that are to follow for next year, i.e. 2013.
If you thought the colours at last spring were bold and strong, then wait till you see the hues from the menswear prints coming from the men’s collections for spring / summer 2013. Bright neon green, mustard yellow, cobalt blue, leafy green – the runway has seen them all. And for a double bonanza, some designers are even giving men the option to wear these colours all at once. The printed pants trend first emerged in the woman’s wardrobe, and after reaching its peak, it’s now moved on to the other demon’s closet.
This is for all the women who would like to hold on to their printed pants for a few more months; you can now claim it to be an androgynous piece in your wardrobe.
For round two of styling, keep the accessories to bare minimum and wear tops with a strict architectural line. Don’t let the pants dictate your outfit, rather have them play a secondary character.
On the runway: The full bloom in Gucci’s collection for spring / summer 2013 hiked optimism, while Versace took an even more daring step by adding a full-floral look in their collection.
We’ve spoken of the plaid trend making it big in the women’s wardrobe for spring and fall 2012. But this spring / summer 2013 runway shows welcomed checks and plaid fabric into the male territory – however, in a modern and quirky way, to say the least.
If you’re not wearing checks in the form of skirts and dresses, then get a check blazer or pants for this season. We’re predicting these will carry through for at least two more seasons, so make this purchase a good one.
On the runway: Christian Lacroix and John Galliano’s pants for their checked suits ended at knees, making these pieces a vital purchase for a cruise-ship holiday. Paul Smith stayed true to his English sophistication and put forward a satiny checked suit.
This shade is daring; it’s honest and it’s the colour that demands a whole lot of confidence. If a man can pull off an all-white suit, so can you.
With its dapper men charm, an all-white ensemble is one that’s hard to miss in a crowd. From the high-fashion reach of Georgio Armani to the king of high street fashion, Topman, this trend is scoring high points for men, along with challenging women in all its right.
For you to pull an white androgynous ensemble, ensure that each garment is well fitted. You don’t want to look like there’s a white tablecloth floating on your body. Have a clear white vision of what you ultimately want, for example, a white blazer, flared white pants or a white fitted dress with an architectural silhouette. Top the look with a statement accessory or bold-hued lips.
On the runway: Both Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo played with the idea of white suits, for their spring 2013 collections, but added tints of colour in the shape of coloured soles and a peeping blue collar.
Ditch the shirt
Contradictory to how we started this piece, we have to say, what’s an androgynous look without a crisp blazer and formal pants? This look can only be justified when you put waistcoats, tuxedo jackets and fitted pants in the picture.
But to keep things interesting, why don’t you try the traditional male tuxedo without a shirt. Get rid of the expected button-down formality and add a quirky waistcoat or just a double-breast blazer to the look. It’s sexy, seductive and screams for attention. Isn’t that what androgyny is about?
If these men can do it on the runway, you can do it off.
On the runway: The hunks at Giorgio Armani revealed their bare chests in a suit. All for a good cause!
Call them sporty trunks or just shorts; the days of below-the-knee shorts are over. The lads at Carven, Burberry and Emporio Armani had zilch problem in putting their quads on display, which gave us an insight into how the beach scene might be anticipated for 2013.
This one is a relatively easy one to style, as you can add girly elements to the look with a chiffon top or go for an all-out masculine ensemble; all depending on the situation of your pins.
On the runway: Dolce & Gabbana’s sultry Italian men walked the runway in their above-the-knee shorts, teamed either with a tucked in loose cotton jersey or six-pack abs. Burberry’s approach was a little more demure with printed shorts peeking from underneath a long, collared shirt.
The motorcycle jacket
Nothing feels more masculine than a stiff leather jacket and a shiny Harley Davidson for an accessory. These motorcycle jackets have been around for a while, but this season, they’ve got a rocker element to them rather than a sporty one.
Despite the wave of sportiness, invading women’s trend reports for 2012/13, men prefer the rockabilly disguise of a biker jacket. Whether you want to bring your inner Debbie Harry or Alanis Morisette to life, this spring / summer 2013 trend is worth a shot.
A winning androgynous tip is to style the jacket with quirky floor-grazing skirts or bootleg pants.
On the runway: Pringle of Scotland made their boys wear hazelnut leather jackets with short-shorts, a cardigan and a polo shirt. Talk about diverse styling!
Adding a new architectural layer to this classic, the tuxedo suit is now more structural and boxy with precision around the shoulders. It doesn’t cling to the body, neither does it shape the upper torso, but it does trick the silhouette to look broader than usual.
Women can either invest in a boxy shouldered dress, or a stern architectural jacket, to make this look a part of their wardrobe.
On the runway: the balloon-type boxy jackets from Lanvin and Valentino have the potential to add androgynous de-structuralism, if worn with a ‘60s style shift dress.
Experiment with shoes
Move over formal leather shoes; open sandals, flatforms and hip-hop converse have taken over men’s suit styling. The conventional pairing of plain black lace-ups with a three-piece suit is now only limited for weddings and graduation ceremonies.
If you steal your man’s suit for a formal affair, then ditch the boring court shoes and try something new. Perhaps ankle-strap stilettos or block-wedge heels?
On the runway: Viktor & Rolf styled their handsome and crisp suits with glittered high tops, while Dries Van Noten’s cheeky pairing of military pants with American-style floaters batted many eyelids.
Who says men can’t pull off shimmer and shine without risking their sexuality? The dudes of this generation sure can – especially if they’re affiliated to Burberry or Etro. The bright and (somewhat) colourful shades of metal seen on men’s runway shows proved that you don’t need to be a Lady Gaga disciple to love all things that glitter.
This trend is rather easy to translate, as metallic clothing usually resonates with women more than men. However, to keep this look less 12-year-oldish and more androgynous, choose matte shades of metallic. You can still pick bright colours, but don’t blind your onlookers.
On the runway: While Burberry Prorsum and Xander Zhou went all out with shine and colour, Thierry Mugler and Maison Martin Margiela took a subtle silver and grey approach.
Wide leg pants
Bidding adieu to the skinny half-sister, the wide-leg pant is finding its way into a man’s wardrobe. These are also way more dramatic than narrow trousers.
This look works superbly for a suited androgynous look, as evident from the past few seasons where women have embraced the wide-leg trouser trend. When taking the androgynous path, remember to keep the length of the trousers till the ankle only.
On the runway: Yohji Yamamoto gave a cultural oriental twist to his flared pants with the harem-style flare ending at the shins. Kenzo’s bright and wide pants also speak volume, literally.