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Men and the subtle art of accessorising

Simplifying the uncomfortable relationship between masculinity and ornamentation. Rule of thumb: keep it simple!

brunch Updated: Dec 30, 2018 01:15 IST
Hindustan Times
men's fashion,men's accessories,fashion
Styling: Drishti Vij; Art Direction: Amit Malik; Make-up and hair: NEU Blush & Artistry by Anjali Jain; Model: Sadaat Salim (Thesaurus Talents)(Shivamm Paathak)

A well-groomed personality, a fit physique and good manners are perhaps the best accessories for any man. But, if you want to blur the lines between conservative and progressive, then a stand-out necklace, a quirky lapel pin or a simple bracelet can help you make a statement too. From Gucci’s leading man Alessandro Michele wearing rings that evoke Italian romanticism, David Beckham stacking beaded bracelets with Chinese coins to Ranveer Singh wearing as many necklaces as his beau for the year’s most sought-after wedding – men’s jewellery is certainly having a moment. And, here’s how you can be a part of it too. Just keep it practical, subtle and meaningful!

Necklaces around the nape

Only with made-up traditional wear

Wear the necklace with: “Traditional outfits like a sherwani or a kurta. Of course a man can wear jewellery on his D-day. Indian royalty has been doing it for decades,” says celebrity stylist Rishi Raj.

What works: “A statement piece with animal motifs or something that resonates with your personality. Ranveer Singh wore an Eagle pendant for his wedding, which looked great,” says fashion designer Jenjum Gadi.

Steer clear of: “A feminine neckpiece or a design that looks very busy,” Jenjum advises.

Jacket, shirt and trousers, Torani; jewellery, Birdhichand Ghanshyamdas ( Shivamm Paathak )

Tie clip for practicality

And to add a bit of fun

WEAR A TIE CLIP WITH: “Dapper looking suits in colours like violet, navy and even deep green. We’ve moved away from conventional colours like grey and blue,” says accessory and clothing designer of label Rara Avis, Sonal Verma.

What works: “There are so many kinds of tie-pins now. There are a whole lot of materials you can experiment with. From leather to a gold-plated finish – there’s a lot of design intervention with men’s accessories these days compared to five years ago,” she says.

Steer clear of: “Bright colours,” says Sonal.

Shirt, Gant; tie and tie clip, Lacquer Embassy ( Shivamm Paathak )

Rings for religion, relationship status...

But never more than one in each hand (if at all) please!

Wear a ring with: “A beautiful velvet suit to invoke the feeling of Italian renaissance or one can even wear a diamond if you’re planning to wear traditional Indian wear,” says fashion designer Nachiket Barve.

What works:“Other than the ubiquitous wedding ring, accessorising with a ring can invoke masculinity. Case in point: Game of Thrones. Plus, men’s jewellery has always been a part of Asian and African cultures and even if you look at runways, jewellery for men can look contemporary instead of feminine now. It all boils down to styling. You need to make the ring an emblem of your personality,” he says.

Steer clear of: “Stacking too many rings with clashing stones if you’re going for a formal occasion,” he says.

Blazer and shirt, Sunil Mehra; ring, Resa Fine Jewellery ( Shivamm Paathak )

Leather bands for style

To make up for the forearms that are still work-in-progress

Wear a leather cuff with: “Anything! A leather band is an accessory you can wear almost every day. One shouldn’t worry about taking it off. It pairs especially well with casual or semi-casual clothes like a pair of jeans or a T-shirt,” says Nachiket.

What works: “A leather band is the new wrist watch. Plus, you can also try experimenting with other materials and try brass or metal,” he says.

Steer clear of: “Wearing it to a pool or a place of worship if leather is not allowed,” he warns.

Cardigan, Berluti; leather cuff, The V Renaissance ( Shivamm Paathak )

Cufflinks can be fun

‘Coz they peek out, not stand out!

Wear cufflinks with: “One can either look very coordinated or try something quirky. For instance, when I’m wearing a kurta which has a bird print on it, I’ll wear cufflinks that’ll have a cat motif on it to poke humour with what I’m wearing,” says celebrity stylist Rishi Raj.

What works:“Fun shapes or motifs. But, simplicity and minimalism work as well,” says Rishi.

Steer clear of: “Something that’s flashy or loud. Accessories should be streamlined and functional,” he says.

Shirt, Postfold; cufflinks, Latique ( Shivamm Paathak )

Lapel pin for identity

To express yourself without saying so

Wear a lapel pin with: “Tone on tone suits. It’s nicer if it’s neutral,” says Sonal Verma

What works: “Lapel pins are the easiest way to start wearing jewellery. They’ve been around for a while and there are many conventional styles available. However, you can wear something quirky like a skull motif from Alexander McQueen. You can even try stacking two or three pins together. The more the merrier,” she explains.

Steer clear of: “Crystals. That’s the last piece of jewellery I’d like to see on a man,” she says.

Shirt, blazer and lapel pin, Lacquer Embassy ( Shivamm Paathak )

Bracelets are for boys

Only if your girlfriend thinks they’re cool!

Wear a bracelet with: “The possibilities are endless! Wear it as a single entity or mix multiple bracelets together for a chunky look. The idea is to balance the outfit and it’s colour,” says fashion designer Sanya Suri, founder of fashion label The Pot Plant.

What works: “From occasions to office, bracelets can be a great accessory to polish your look. Truth be told, men have always worn bracelets. Leather, beads, metal – pick something that complements your look,” she says.

Steer clear of: “Making the accessory into a statement! Try to create a balance. Make sure the colour, texture and material juxtaposes well with the outfit,” she concludes.

Shirt, Gant; bracelet, Resa Fine Jewellery ( Shivamm Paathak )

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From HT Brunch, December 30, 2018

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First Published: Dec 30, 2018 00:40 IST