Fashion has long been distinctly separated by gender, with menswear and womenswear designers making their careers in creating beautiful fashion for specific bodies and genders. In recent years, however, there has been an emerging trend in womenswear and in certain circles of women’s fashion designers such as Yves Saint-Laurent who have begun to incorporate more masculine lines and styles into their clothes, as well as elements of androgyny, in order to challenge conventional gender norms and empower women to express their personal style in unique ways.
If you are looking to mix up your style with a more masculine edge, here are a few tips on how this can be done successfully.
It is important to start at the base of a more masculine-inspired look with some well-tailored womenswear pieces. A suit is perhaps the most obvious example of how fine tailoring and good-quality materials can invoke a more masculine style, but you should also look at stocking up on basic items such as button-up shirts, blazers and suit trousers which you can then build your outfit around. You’ll find excellent examples of these on the high street. Retailers like H&M offer many classic tailored pieces, and NHS workers can benefit from discount codes to create a look with a masculine edge for less.
Mix and match
Once you’ve found your key beginning pieces, it’s time to experiment. These versatile pieces can be mixed and matched with feminine elements to create a balanced and chic ensemble. For instance, you can pair a structured blazer with a flowy dress or a tailored suit jacket with a lace top. Experiment with various textures, patterns, and colours to create an intriguing contrast and add depth to your overall look. When you’re mixing and matching in this way, it’s crucial to find a pleasing contrast when it comes to colour and texture. Be bold, and experiment until a particular combination inspires you.
One classic feature of masculine fashion which can be successfully adopted by women is that of the oversized silhouette. Oversized blazers, shirts, or trousers create dramatic lines and focal points for your look, and these can be balanced by being paired with more fitted pieces, such as skinny jeans or a belt to cinch the waist. This in effect creates more balanced proportions and will result in a stylish and effortless look.
The right accessories can really finish off an outfit and tie everything together. Certain accessories, such as ties, bowties and neckerchiefs have been historically reserved for and associated with men. However, by experimenting with adding a chic set of suspenders or a patterned bowtie to your masculine-inspired ensemble, you can show off your sense of creativity and fun whilst still keeping your look coordinated.
Footwear is equally as important when it comes to completing a look, and feel free to eschew a stereotypical high heel in favour of a formal menswear style of shoe like Oxfords or brogues. You could even go one step further and incorporate a more dramatic style like combat boots, which can add a touch of punk rock-inspired masculinity to your ensemble.