Early in the 20th century, there was a period of considerable development and advancement known as the Edwardian era, or Belle Epoque. Between 1901 and 1910, both men’s and women’s fashion patterns underwent a change. Men’s fashion during the Edwardian era was more refined and elegant, with an emphasis on tailored clothing and high-end accessories. In addition to top hats, waistcoats, and shirts with high collars, ties and morning coats were among the clothing items mentioned. The Edwardian man had impeccable grooming and was dressed to the nines, with a focus on quality and care for detail. The Edwardian era was a crucial time in fashion history, and modern men’s design today still bears the effects of this period.
Characteristics of Edwardian Menswear
Opulence, elegance, and refinement defined Edwardian menswear. This period of fashion was characterised by the use of fine fabrics and meticulous attention to detail. Examples of specific clothing pieces and fashions that exhibit these traits include,
With a concentration on tailored clothing and attractive accessories, Edwardian menswear was known for its polished and elegant design. Some essential traits of this fashion are as follows:
- Tailored clothing:
The Edwardian man was well-dressed, with an emphasis on precisely fitted suits and jackets that fit him properly.
- High collars:
Shirts with high collars, frequently with a wing collar or a detachable collar, were fashionable.
Ties were often made of silk and worn with suits. During this time, the “four-in-hand” knot was widely used.
- Top hats:
Top hats, which might be fashioned of various materials like silk or beaver, were a necessary item for formal events.
- Morning coats:
Morning coats were often made of wool or tweed and were used for formal events.
Waistcoats are often composed of silk or wool and are worn with suits.
Pocket watches, canes, and gloves were common among men in the Edwardian era.
Edwardian men devoted close attention to their appearance, shaving their faces, combing their hair, and polishing their shoes, among other aspects.
Dark and dismal hues like black, navy blue, and grey were common in Edwardian men’s clothing.
Popular Trends of the Era
Menswear saw the emergence of a number of prominent trends throughout the Edwardian era, including:
- The dandy look:
The dandy look was typified by a flamboyant and stylish look that frequently used bright colours and patterns. Young, upper-class males were particularly fond of this tendency, which was frequently connected to intellectual and artistic communities. Dandies frequently wore dazzling jewellery, cravats, and flamboyant waistcoats.
- The lounge suit:
The lounge suit, commonly referred to as the “sack suit,” was a less formal occasion-appropriate, more laid-back style of suit. This look included loose-fitting jacket and pants, which were frequently made of tweed or flannel. Middle-class men preferred the lounge suit over the more formal morning coat because it was more comfortable.
- The Norfolk jacket:
The Norfolk jacket was a well-liked design of garment worn for outdoor sports like hunting and shooting. This design had a vent in the back for ease of movement, huge patch pockets, and a belted waist. Men of all classes wore the Norfolk jacket, which was frequently constructed of tweed or other durable materials.
- The Boater hat:
The boater hat, commonly referred to as the skimmer, was a common hat worn in the summertime. It featured a flat top and brim made of straw. Both men and women wore it, and it was frequently worn with linen suits, white trousers, and boat shoes.
- The Oxford Bags:
The Oxford Bags were a kind of very wide-leg, high-waisted pants popular among young men in the 1920s. To attain a suave look, they were frequently worn with button-down shirts and leather belts.
To reflect the luxury and elegance that characterized the Edwardian era, all of these outfits and fashion trends were worn. Men of various socioeconomic classes wore them, but different styles were more preferred by particular social circles.
The Evolution of Edwardian Menswear
Over the course of the decade, Edwardian menswear transformed as a result of shifting fashion trends and styles brought on by historical social and cultural shifts. The following are some significant ways that Edwardian menswear changed during this time:
- The trend toward a more laid-back and cosy appearance:
The majority of occasions were still attended in formal attire like morning coats and top hats during the start of the Edwardian era. But as the decade went on, a trend toward a more laid-back and cosy look evolved. The lounge suit, commonly referred to as the “sack suit,” gained popularity as a less formal option to formal dress.
- The impact of sports and leisure:
The impact of sports and leisure: With the emergence of new clothing trends made especially for these activities, this had a big effect on fashion. For instance, the Norfolk jacket was a well-liked design of garment worn for outdoor activities like hunting and shooting.
- The rise of youth culture:
Young men and women began to reject the traditional ideals and fashions of their parents toward the end of the Edwardian era, ushering in a new youth culture. This was reflected in fashion, which saw the emergence of new trends like the Oxford bags that young men wore in the 1920s.
- The influence of new technologies:
The Edwardian era saw the development of numerous new technology, notably the vehicle and the aeroplane, which had a profound effect on fashion. The invention of the vehicle sparked the development of new clothing trends, such as the dustcoat, which was worn while driving to shield garments from dirt and dust.
Overall, the social and cultural developments of the century had a significant impact on Edwardian menswear, with new fashions, fads, and apparel items being developed in response to the society’s shifting interests and activities.
In the Edwardian era, the tailored suit served as the cornerstone of a man’s clothing. These suits had a fitting jacket with a wide lapel, long, tapering pants, and were constructed of fine wool or tweed. The pants were worn high on the waist and had a crisp crease, while the jacket was normally designed with a natural shoulder and a single button closure.
The Edwardian suit:
The waistcoat, sometimes known as a vest, was frequently worn with the Edwardian suit, adding an additional level of formality and sophistication. The waistcoat often had a low-cut front and a back made of a contrasting fabric, and it was typically made of the same material as the suit.
An integral component of the Edwardian man’s clothing was the formal shirt. These shirts had a high, stiff collar, a front button placket, and were constructed of premium cotton or linen. The collar was worn with a tie or cravat and frequently starched to keep its shape. Long, often buttoned cuff links were worn with the sleeves.
A wing collar, which is a small, erect collar that stands up around the neck, was frequently used with the formal shirt. This kind of collar was thought to be exceedingly formal and was generally worn with a bow tie.
Edwardian Pocket Watch
A hat, a cane, and gloves were among more common accessories. Typically, the hat was a felt top hat or a bowler hat, both of which were worn with formal clothes. The cane was a prestige and wealth symbol that was frequently fashioned of wood or ivory. The gloves were worn to provide an extra layer of refinement to an ensemble and were often made of leather or suede.
How to Incorporate Edwardian Menswear into Your Wardrobe
Men’s Edwardian clothing can be a wonderful addition to your wardrobe if you want to make it more refined and elegant. The following are some methods to add Edwardian-inspired clothing to your wardrobe:
- Tailored clothing:
Put money on a well-tailored suit, such as a morning coat or a lounge suit, for a classy and sophisticated appearance.
- High collars:
Shirts with high collars, such wing collars or detachable collars, can give your ensemble a more refined look.
Silk ties in plain or solid hues can give a touch of class to any ensemble.
- Top hats:
Top hats are appropriate for wearing on special occasions and can give a sense of formality to an ensemble.
- Morning coats:
Wearing a morning coat with a waistcoat and pants will give you a fully-fledged Edwardian appearance and is a terrific alternative for formal occasions.
When paired with a high-collared shirt and tie, a waistcoat can give a dash of class to a suit.
Pocket watches, canes, and gloves are examples of accessories that can give an ensemble a bit of refinement.
The Edwardian style can be achieved by paying attention to grooming, such as maintaining a clean-shaven face, brushing your hair, and polishing your shoes.
In this blog post, we’ve covered the essential traits of Edwardian menswear in this blog post, including the usage of grandeur, elegance, and refinement. We have also looked at some of the era’s most well-liked fashions, including the dandy style, the lounge suit, and the Norfolk jacket. In addition, we looked at how the social and cultural shifts of the era affected Edwardian menswear and how it changed throughout the course of the decade. We concluded by offering some advice on how to add Edwardian-inspired clothing to your closet.
The fascinating and significant Edwardian era in fashion history continues to have an impact on contemporary men’s design. There are a variety of online sources, such as fashion blogs, historical websites, and museums that you may utilize to learn more about Edwardian menswear. You may learn more about the history of fashion and how it has changed through time by researching the styles and trends of the Edwardian era. Therefore, try exploring and experimenting with adding items with Edwardian influences to your wardrobe; you might be surprised by how it can improve your whole appearance and sense of style.