Difference Between Style & Fashion?

dsc_0053

Everyone knows that fashion does not equate style but what is it exactly that makes these two terms different? Interestingly I came across this the other day “style is the characteristics or distinctive way a product (individual) looks” while “fashion is the currently accepted or popular style”. In other words, fashion reflects the inherently short timespan of trends while style displays the eternal traits of an individual.

Recently, I find myself being not offended but taken aback by “you are so fashionable!” comments. I think to myself “I am not fashionable, I don’t read up or even appreciate trends”. Considering my love for classical menswear, my style resonates with the idea of timelessness and versatility. The clothes I wear are hardly indicative of a trend or a particular individual. I am much more appreciative when someone tells me “nice jacket, that’s so you” as it defines you by exuding your individuality, that to me is style.

Now I am not implying that if you pick up on a trend, you are lacking in style. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with following trends, heck that’s even how I get some of my inspiration sometimes! But don’t be a full fetched trend follower, viewing every runway show or purchasing an item because a celebrity was seen with it. That doesn’t breed or exercise creativity, it just promotes herd mentality. Clothes have a great way of communicating a message without you speaking and by picking up on every trend, the message becomes clear for you: a conformer who lacks originality.

I urge you to be yourself, make mistakes, learn from it and eventually find your style. Because once you find your style, you will be able to establish your own identity through the usage of clothing/dressing.

Unstructured Jacket

I am aware that Summer is coming to a close and we are all experiencing the relatively slow but definite wardrobe transition. However, I wanted to take the opportunity of the final days of warmth to talk about a Summer piece that I had made when I was back home (Singapore).

I was (am) always immersed with the idea of unstructured tailoring. The term unstructured tailoring was popularized by Neapolitan tailoring. It’s mainly focus on soft structures, often involving little or no shoulder padding, a very light canvasing and Spalla Camicia (shirt sleeve shoulder). However, up to then, I have yet to own a completely unstructured jacket. I own several jackets with no shoulder padding but these jackets still possess a rather heavy canvas that fails to provide the nonchalance of unstructured tailoring.

The fabric for the jacket is a slubbly wool-linen medium blue.

dsc_7023

With the exception of a 1/4 lining (sleeves and shoulders), this jacket is truly unstructured. It does not possess a shoulder padding or canvas, making this jacket incredibly easy to pair casually. Due to its lack of shoulder padding I made the conscious decision to slightly reduce the shoulder width of this jacket, emulating a natural shoulder look.

dsc_6998

I also intended for this jacket to look like a shirt-jacket, resembling a cardigan or casual blazer. With that in mind, I opt for a fuller cut with this jacket – slightly lower (and bigger) armholes, fuller chest, arms and waist. Such a cut is foreign to me, especially considering my favouritism for a substantially slimmer jacket. Admittedly, I am starting to prefer a fuller cut. It looks cleaner when the jacket is buttoned and incredibly more comfortable, I can actually play tennis in this jacket.

I am usually wearing this jacket casually, like say a white scoop neck shirt with high waisted jeans and loafers. But I also wanted to show that an unstructured jacket can be paired formally.

dsc_7007

In this ensemble there’s a consistency of blue shades, light blue shirt as its less formal than white, unlined navy suede string loafers, blue butterfly pocket square, and a red and blue stripe tie. The beige linen trousers is a great finishing touch to the outfit. Instead of white trousers, which gets easily stained and occasionally ostentatious, the beige subdues the blue hues appropriately by creating a seamless colour contrast.

dsc_7037

dsc_7047

If you are getting a suit, it probably helps that it contains some form a structure to adhere to it’s formal purpose. However, for a sports coat, it definitely more beneficial to get an unstructured or one with little structure. This allows you to transition the jacket within both realms, casual and formal, smoothly.

dsc_6989

This jacket has become one of my favourite jackets for its ability to be worn casually and its notch lapels, as most of my suit jackets are in peaks. It’s just unfortunate that I would have to hang this jacket up soon to welcome the colder temperatures.