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Is the workwear/prep trend dead?

spidercan

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I was super involved with styleforum and clothing in general from around 2009 to -2013. The last 6-7 years I had all the basics and stopped really caring about clothes. Back then it seemed like everybody was into Jcrew style prep stuff, flannel blazers, Barbour, checkered shirts, Red Wing or Alden boots, selvedge jeans etc.

I’m starting to buy clothes again and I’m really having trouble figuring out how to dress now. Seems like people are into loose relaxed semi-hippy Bode/kapital stuff or Tech-wear. And then a segment of the internet that got really into Rick Owens and Acronym. JCrew as a company is almost dead. I still like the workwear/ prep aesthetic, but maybe thats because my eyes and brain are still stuck in 2010. Is it still a thing or have people moved on?
 

Waldo Jeffers

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I think it depends how old you are

I don’t see many people in their early 20s dressing this way for example

past that, I think the style is fairly permanent- will never be apex style but never totally unstylish

it’s a pretty safe mode of dressing overall

I’m in an industry that is rapidly shifting from formal (suits daily) to biz casual

as a result I’m redoing my wardrobe to this style

I like it because if done well, you can transition from office to social life in the same clothes without looking like a dork
 

Waldo Jeffers

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I do think there’s a range in this style though

I’m not going to dress like a miner or lumberjack

anything you could throw a tweed jacket on top of I think gives you maximum range from a Dadcore perspective
 

Thin White Duke

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I was super involved with styleforum and clothing in general from around 2009 to -2013. The last 6-7 years I had all the basics and stopped really caring about clothes. Back then it seemed like everybody was into Jcrew style prep stuff, flannel blazers, Barbour, checkered shirts, Red Wing or Alden boots, selvedge jeans etc.

I’m starting to buy clothes again and I’m really having trouble figuring out how to dress now. Seems like people are into loose relaxed semi-hippy Bode/kapital stuff or Tech-wear. And then a segment of the internet that got really into Rick Owens and Acronym. JCrew as a company is almost dead. I still like the workwear/ prep aesthetic, but maybe thats because my eyes and brain are still stuck in 2010. Is it still a thing or have people moved on?
What is workwear/prep?
I’m no expert but in my own mind ‘workwear’ and ‘prep’ are almost opposites - blue collar vs white collar.
Anyway why do you have to jump on trends. Figure out a general style that you like and stick with it. There’s no need to be constantly playing catch up with whatever idiot is in charge of these things. Some of the items you mentioned don’t seem to be particularly ‘in’ or ‘out’ so keep wearing ‘em.
 

Waldo Jeffers

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I think there’s overlap between workwear and prep

flannel shirts, jeans and boots, for example

If you take the most rustic versions of flannel shirts you’ll end up more on the miner / lumberjack end of the workwear spectrum

but slightly more refined and you end up on the prep end
 

Hellbent

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The stuff from Kapital looks like fashion to me, not really like an established style. Nothing wrong with that. But in just 5-10 years you might feel completely outdated wearing stuff like that. I prefer the trad/ivy/classic style partially because it is more sustainable. Lapel width etc. change a bit over time. But If you never seek the extremes, the same clothes can be worn for many many years.
 

Peter1

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The workwear and Ivy Style stuff from 2009 has evolved into lots of subgenres. I personally like some of the Italian "workwear" brands like 1st Pat-Rn ("first pattern) and Arpenteur (France), I'm a huge fan of Orslow, I still like some raw denim, especially TCB; and if you go through Engineered Garments' stuff on a well-stocked webstore like Bureau Belfast you can see where it all comes together.

Trad is never really out of style, because it was never really in style....that's the point.
 

manowar

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When I'm not in a suit or exercising, I'm usually in this style. Simple and clean, but with some rugged pieces. It works well for me. I'm not about to buy a whole new wardrobe every few years to keep up with some ridiculous new fashion. Maybe I am stuck in the last decade, but so be it.
 

FlyingMonkey

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The thing that in Japan got called 'rugged ivy' is definitely over - the closure of Free & Easy magazine, which had done more than most to promote the combination of ivy + workwear, tweed + denim, etc., marked the symbolic final end in 2016. There was a really good piece on that on Heddels that tells you everything you need to know: https://www.heddels.com/2016/02/ruggedmen-and-the-end-of-free-easy-white-oak-economy/

But one of the reasons it's 'over' is that it's everywhere. There's even a Sportscoat and Jeans thread in Classic Menswear now. There are so many variants, offshoots and elements incorporated into other looks in interesting ways. And if you still want to dress the rugged ivy way, no-one's stopping you; it's still a coherent look.
 
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robinsongreen68

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i wear different things but my 'degree zero' on days when i don't want to think about my outfit is often something like MHL in winter, or in summer well worn apcs and a bleu de travail. not fashion at all, but i think it looks fine.
as others have said, this kind of look is a firm middle ground now, in Europe at least: H&M's latest iteration, arket, is exactly this.
 
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dieworkwear

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Nothing is fully in or out at this point because the internet has allowed people to dress however they want. And the fashion cycle is moving so quickly, almost everything is "in."

The stuff from Kapital looks like fashion to me, not really like an established style. Nothing wrong with that. But in just 5-10 years you might feel completely outdated wearing stuff like that. I prefer the trad/ivy/classic style partially because it is more sustainable. Lapel width etc. change a bit over time. But If you never seek the extremes, the same clothes can be worn for many many years.

Kapital is too weird to date easily. Same with other aggressive looks, such as Rick Owens, Yamamoto, etc. Stuff dates when it's adopted by certain people, not because it's too avant garde.
 
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London

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Brands like EG (The basic non-fashions stuff), Orslow, De Bonne Facture, Evan Kinori look good now or 10 years from now. A lot of these types of brands are post-trend.
 

FlyingMonkey

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And yet, OrSlow began as a straight-up Japanese workwear revival brand and most of what it does you'd still put in that category. Even EG emerged from that and a lot of its basic stuff still fits that bill. Evan Kinori is essentially making a more expensive and high-quality version of traditional Euro-American working class clothing rather than workwear per se, much like SEH Kelly or Old Town in the UK. Is this really 'post-trend' or just a niche?
 

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