Men’s Fashion Ideas Learned from Women’s Haute Couture Shows

In fashion, there is a rather large difference between womenswear and menswear. Crossing the lines is usually called “androgyny” or “gender-bending” and it is not very often that men look at womenswear shows (especially the extravagant haute couture shows) for inspiration and that women look at men’s shows to find some ideas for their looks.

This is a waste in a way, as very often men can look at womenswear shows and take a little inspiration – not in the sense that they should wear women’s clothes, but that that the concepts and ideas that lie behind great women’s creations can be translated into men’s style as well.


Here is a series of ideas men can take for their outfits by going through the haute couture autumn 2017 shows:



Creating shape


Guo Pei Haute Couture Autumn 2017


One thing that men do not do very often is giving their bodies shape with the help of clothes. While it is correct that you should dress for your body, you can create shapes and proportions with the help of clothes.

For example, men who want to appear longer, can wear suits that fasten rather low, this way, the opening of the jacket will create the illusion of a longer chest. Men who have long hair or shorter necks can use open v-neck collars to draw attention to their face and elongate their neck and overall appearance. You can use narrow-cut jackets to emphasize your shoulders and even play with colors to create proportions. For example, contrasting colors will add structure and make you look a bit shorter, while wearing the same color or similar colors from head to toe (or creating smooth transitions, such as wearing a shirt that is bright in the upper half and becomes darker and then is complimented by dark pants) will make you look leaner.

At times, just a stitching line can help you look completely different, so always pay attention to details and be careful about the sartorial choices you make.



Show skin the right way


Giambattista Valli Haute Couture Autumn 2017


Generally, contrary to popular belief, men’s bodies are rather taboo in our society. This is why men are often frowned upon should they showcase too much skin. While you can dress up in short shorts and a tank top, to obtain a balanced and more appealing outfit, you should always try to keep a balance between the areas you show and the areas you cover. For example, shorts look dressier with a long-sleeve shirt and you go for long pants and a long sleeve and leave two of the top buttons of your shirt unfastened.

In short, it’s all about keeping it modest, creative and balanced: these are the traits of a great and modern look.



Glitz and glam


Jean Paul Gaultier Haute Couture Autumn 2017


Men are often reticent to wearing fabrics that shine brightly, shiny shoes and accessories. Of course, the main reason is that they are trying to avoid being too feminine or to have their masculinity questioned, but there are ways to wear shine and still keep it manly and strong. Designers have showed how over and over again.

For a safe bet, what you can do is make sure that the shiny pieces you wear are balanced out by matte pieces. Sometimes, neutrals such as beige, brown, khaki, black, white, ivory or gray and do the job even better. This way, you will stand out in a positive way and won’t look like a disco ball, unless, of course, this is what you want.


It can be said that generally the main thing guys can learn about fashion from womenswear shows is that they should be bolder in their choices. Colors, patterns and accessories are there to be used and while it might take a while and some unsuccessful experiments until you get the hang of putting a creative and stylish outfit together, you will eventually get there. As the old saying goes, each journey starts with one step.


The world of haute couture has always given grand creations to the world of fashion and culture at large. The inspired designs can serve as a starting ground or just as an idea for the modern man who finds elegance anywhere and knows how to adapt the things he sees around him to his own looks and style.


Fraquoh and Franchomme






Further reading:

The double meaning of androgyny in fashion

Should the meaning of menswear be redefined?

Men and feminine clothes: A dichotomy?

Men and the color Pink: A cultural history

Women wearing men’s clothes: What do you think?

The Politics Of Dressing Up: Masculinity Vs Femininity

Toys, body image and gender roles

A debate: children’s clothes, ads and roles

P.S. We want to hear from you! Have you ever taken ideas from women’s fashion and transformed them into menswear? How? How did it work? Share your feedback, questions or thoughts in the comments below! For more articles on style, fashion tips and cultural insights, you can subscribe to Attire Club via e-mail or follow us on FacebookTwitter or Instagram!



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