Suit yourself - are suits too predictable?

Fashion editor Phoebe Eyles writes about why men such as Billy Porter are leading the way for more fearless fashion in 2020

Phoebe Eyles
12th February 2020
When it comes to award shows and red carpet event fashion, the women are more often than not praised and scrutinised for their eye-catching numbers.

Fashion for women has often been more bold, experimental and daring, giving journalists and viewers more to take in. However, men such as Billy Porter are really changing the game for men to be more bold at star studded events and move away from wearing a simple suit.

Instagram: @theebillyporter

Porter, famous for winning a Tony award for his portrayal of Lola in Kinky Boots back in 2013, has been providing us with iconic red carpet fashion for years. His recent look at the 92nd Academy Awards was created by English designer Giles Deacon and featured a golden, feathered torso and a printed full length skirt. His 2020 Grammy's look featured a motorised hat, whilst his outfit at the 2019 Met Gala resembled an Egyptian sun God. Porter's fearless experimentation with fashion is something which should be celebrated, and more men should follow suit (pun intended).

"Men's fashion has fluctuated."

The modern lounge suit was first seen in the 19th century but it is thought to have found its inspiration from King Charles II 's love of a simple classic style of dress for society events. This marked a change from the extravagant dress of men seen before this time, which shows how men's fashion has fluctuated and our current society has conditioned us to see a suit as a sign of power and masculinity. Going into the new decade, men should use the choice they have to experiment with colour and styles for formal events as a true sign of power.

Instagram: @harrystyles

Porter's outfits are iconic, yet not so achievable for the general public. However, there are other celebrities that are paving the way for more experimental men's fashion. For example, Harry Styles' Met Gala 2019 look featured a flowing, mesh detailed top which demonstrates how men can easily pull off softer pieces for formal wear, instead of a traditional shirt. Styles has also worn bold pieces for photoshoots and performances. Similarly Shawn Mendes wore a suit embellished at the seams to the 2019 Met Gala, and the added detail showed the flair of Saint Laurent.

"It makes perfect sense that men should be able to experiment."

In a society where we are striving towards equality between men and women, as well as the blurring between masculinity and femininity, it makes perfect sense that men should be able to experiment with styles, garments and silhouettes in the same way that women have done for centuries. Fashion is a form of art and women do not always have to be the muse. This is an exciting time in our society where men can feel comfortable with changing up their look, so whilst wearing a full skirt and gold bodice may be a lot to take in for your end of year ball, trying out a suit with exceptional details could be a good place to start.

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