The first ever South African Menswear Week was held Cape Town this past weekend and the Men’s Health fashion team were there to see the Autumn/Winter 2015 collections. Have no idea what stylish items to stock up on when the chilly season sets in? Here are the trends you need to watch out for.

The classic essential: the leather bag

No longer saved for balding university professors, brown leather bags were a fashionable staple on the runway. They took the form of structured backpacks, briefcases in Rich Mnisi’s show for his clothing line Oath, or tube- and triangular-shaped weekender bags in the Shirt & Co collection. Bastion splashed some colour on the classic, showcasing messenger bags in green and mustard.

15a_SAMW_SDR__8863_KORBLA_w387_h580

The other classic essential: the trench coat

Camel is one of the most luxurious and winter-appropriate colours ever – so it was no surprise that one of the most anticipated designers of the weekend, Ruald Rheeder, incorporated it into his collection with trench and overcoats. Gents, if you want to not only brave the rain and wind and look like a million bucks, invest in a good trench coat. Traditionally they’re supposed to be knee-length, but if you want to break the rules, go for a shorter cut.

15a_SAMW_SDR__0159_RUALD_w386_h580

Jackets

If coats aren’t your thing (or if you live in KZN where you wouldn’t need one for most of winter), jackets are a great substitute and will never go out of style. Lukhanyo Mdingi incorporated bomber and utility jackets into his collection. In black and different shades of grey, they’re winter appropriate and perfect for any setting – whether you’re hiking or having dinner, wear them with the right clothes and you’ll look like a rock star.

15b_SAMW_1081_UkhanyoMdingi_w387_h580

50 Shades of Autumn

If you thought grey and black were boring colours, think again. They were big in the Naked Ape collection, which made use of textures and layering – sweaters and T-shirts under coats and jackets, and suits. The collection was in shades of purple, brown, deep blues, burnt orange and mustard – all trendy and perfect for the chilly season.

15b_SAMW_2264_NakedApe_w387_h580

Sports Luxe

The Augustine collection brought some street cred to Thursday evening with their black and white line. Featuring cuffed sweatpants, varsity jackets, shorts and kicks that would make even the biggest sneakerhead scream, it showed that the sports luxe trend isn’t going anywhere. Consider your post-gym outfit sorted.

15a_SAMW_0316_Augustine_w387_h580

The Suit: Reinvented

Craig Port went for an all black (with bits of white) collection, playing around with textures and materials (there was a crocodile skin jacket), giving lovers of the head-to-toe black look immeasurable amounts of pleasure. If you enjoy playing it safe with your smart casual and formal wear, check the collection out for inspiration. CSquared, on the other hand, opted for a more experimental approach. Jackets with contrast lapels and pockets and different kinds of prints, suits in lighter and brighter shades, collared- and T-shirts matched with formal pants were the trend here. Our very own prince of prints, Chu Suwannapha showed his debut clothing line, Chulaap, at SAMW and his collection of suits were colourful, bold and anything but wintery. Try one of these pieces with a plain shirt and jacket for laid back events like weddings or cocktail parties to really make an impression.

15a_SAMW_SDR__4281_CraigPort_w387_h580

 

If you don’t like black on black on black, then do for a white suit. The XO collection was more upbeat, with polka dot, light grey and white pieces – any of which are ideal for those warmer days or for mixing and matching with other dark pieces.

15a_SAMW_SDR__5345_XO_w387_h580

Photographer: SDR Photo