Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Would you wear tweed and crochet tops in summer?

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From the runway to the store rack, brands are finding unique ways to make the two fabrics seasonless



Tweed is a textile one usually associates with chic dressers at country clubs, and crochet has always been a holiday essential worn on beaches when one wants to flash a bit of skin and enjoy a good tan. 

This season, both the fabrics are going mainstream with luxury as well as high street labels using them in their latest offerings. For Spring-summer 2024, for instance, tweed made its presence felt on the runway, with labels like Amiri, Dior, and Fendi showcasing the heritage textile in two-piece suits, supersized topcoats and shirts. At the Dior men’s show, designer Kim Jones went on to experiment with tweed in not just ready-to-wear but also trainers and saddle bags. Yes, agreed, for the harsh Indian summer, tweed may be a challenging fabric. Hence, it’s best to invest in a super lightweight tweed so that one looks on trend without compromising on comfort. 

Besides tweed, crochet is also appearing prominently in menswear offerings of brands like Fendi, Marine Serre and Dsquared2.

Designer Prreeti Jaiin Nainutia of label Nirmooha notes that the current spring-summer season has seen a delightful fusion of tweed and crochet in menswear, showcasing a broader acceptance of gender-neutral fashion. 

“These traditionally feminine textiles have found a new home in men’s wardrobes, offering a blend of versatility and style influenced by the raw energy of streetwear,” Nainutia says. “To adapt these exquisite trends to India’s sweltering summers, seek out lightweight tweed or crochet blends crafted from breathable materials like cotton or linen. Opt for relaxed fits and incorporate airy, sheer fabrics or open-weave designs to invite a refreshing breeze.” 

You can also embrace a palette of soft pastels and playful summery prints. “Complete the look with delicate accessories such as straw hats or canvas sneakers, adding a touch of effortless elegance to your ensemble,” she adds.

The popularity of the crochet textile is an offshoot of the larger sheercore trend, which has impacted menswear dressing over the past few years. Designer Karrtik D observes that the inclusion of crochet in menswear speaks of the evolving notions of masculinity and individual expression. 

Tweed, which was originally a preferred workwear fabric for farmers in Scotland and Ireland, meanwhile, is becoming a regular sight on the racks of Zara and H&M as well as brands like Bottega Veneta. 

The first designer to make it truly fashionable and acceptable was Coco Chanel. Today, the lightweight tweed is being mixed with sequins, pearls and leather to suit every sartorial fantasy.

This fabric has long been associated with old money aesthetic, which is trending on social media, notes designer Masumi Mewawalla. “Gen Z creators and influencers are warming up to vintage trends, and ‘granny chic’ is having a moment. And menswear designers have reinterpreted them in their own handwriting,” she says.

Manish Mishra is a Delhi-based writer and content creator.

 


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