Fashion changes all the time and when we look at different times in history we can see that change. We look to the 70s, we have flares, to the 50s, suits. Even down to things like hair style we can see this change. But with any sector of fashion, we borrow from that history – aspects of the clothes once made and sold are now populating our stores. Patterned clothes are not new. They’ve been used for years. They’ve been hiding away. Their style has been lurking and here at MFM style is what we love.
The thing to understand about patterns is they’re bold. They catch people’s eye. Simon Chilvers wrote an article in The Guardian called ‘Are British men ready to wear prints?’ where he discussed the possibility of prints/patterns being the next big thing in Britain. Our society today is that answer. We go into clothing stores and see jumpers with foxes or wolves on them. We go to the sock department and finding a plain black sock seems quite difficult. There’s a certain embracing attitude towards wearing patterned clothes, a way of allowing the jumper to speak for you.
Our culture is becoming obsessed with all things patterned. Things that you can barely see – such as socks, covered by our shoes – are not decorated in dots, strips, tiger prints, even looking like piano keys. Why? Could patterns possibly be the motif of our time? When we people look back to the 21st century will they see patterns? Much like when we look to the 70s we see flares? If the answer is yes, with swallows and wolves made as a pattern on our clothes, we should embrace it. Rolling up the sleeves of a jumper and showing off accessories such as watches or wristbands adds to that style.
When going out for dinner or for drinks with friends look to shirts. Shirts are perfect for smart or smart-casual occasions. With a long sleeve shirt you have the choice to roll the sleeves up or keep them down. With shirt sleeves, you roll them up even further – perfect for summer. And of course, with any shirt, you can use accessories – ties, dicky-bows and more.
At MFM, we like our suits and the best accessory to go with a suit – if not an essential thing to wear – is a tie. A patterned tie can really bring a suit to life. What was once a plain, boring black suit could become something much more exciting. At my graduation, I wore a tie with flowers on it, as I did work experience at The Times, I wore another flowery tie on my first day – it got many compliments. Wearing these clothes with an acknowledgment of its bold statement – a flowery tie against a white shirt – adds to this style, it says something about you as the wearer, as a person, your own distinctive style. Patterns are not just one umbrella; there are many other umbrellas under. When one person’s style may be floral patterns, the other might be animals and it goes on.
With winter creeping in, what way to keep warm than wearing a patterned jumper? With Harrods’ great collection of jumpers, choice is everywhere. They show that adding a pair of trousers and smart boots can make a patterned jumper serious and affective.
Patterned clothes are not just in our stores but also on the runway. Designers are all about pushing the boundaries, seeing what’s new, just like we are at MFM. It’s been a debate going round for years, whether we, as British, will become used to this almost flamboyant way of dressing but it’s not flamboyant, it’s fashionable, it’s exciting, it’s stylish. And, if going into any of our favourite stores – Selfridges, Topman, House of Fraser, French Connection, just to name a few – and seeing the clothes with their many wonderful patterns, I think we can say that we’re used to it and we love it.