The autumn winter season is on its way and we know it’s not just us gals getting excited for some new season threads. For Brisbane’s dapper gents, some new-wave trends are on their way and we’re pumped to see how locals plan to make them their own. While the thought of heavy knits and overcoats might make you a little sweaty right now, before we know it the cool change will be upon us and the tropical themed shirts shut away.
Although wardrobe planning may not be on every guys mind, it’s a chance to get a head of the pack. Fresh off the launch of their latest collection we had the opportunity to get the 411 on the latest men’s fashion from the man in the know, Paul Burden. As the Head of Design and Creative at menswear brand POLITIX, Paul has a wealth of experience and fashion know-how with close to 30 years in the industry. So in our books, basically what he says goes. We chatted to Paul about all things menswear as well as all the details on the brands upcoming AW collection launching this week! Check out all the deets below!
Tell us about your career – how did you come to be the Head of Production and Design at POLITIX?
My first role in the industry was working in a men’s tailoring factory, learning about all aspects of design and production of men’s formalwear.
I joined Ted Baker (London) in 1993 as a Product Manager. Heading up a small design team, I developed the brand over several years to become the international brand it is today.
In 1997, I was promoted to Product Director, where I oversaw the development of all menswear, womenswear, and childrenswear at Ted Baker, alongside the CEO / Founder Ray Kelvin.
I moved onto Next (UK) in 2001 as Head of Menswear Design. Managing a team of 25 designers, I was responsible for trend, creative, and design for all categories of menswear.
In 2012, I returned to Ted Baker as Product License Director where I looked after all partnerships and products for the brand. From there, I joined Reiss (London) in 2017 as Product License Director, where I was tasked with building a license partner program in similar categories to Ted Baker.
Then, in 2018, I was approached by the CEO of Country Road Group about a potential position within the group, which led to me to moving to Australia and joining POLITIX as Head of Design and Creative.
What are your top trend predictions for AW20?
Items from our new AW20 range that I think are going to be a hit this season include our tan grid check suit and black and white houndstooth three-piece suit. The Epsom coat, which we are featuring in five colours (tan, oatmeal, grey, burgundy, and navy) and using(our) knitwear as layering pieces.
What can we expect from the upcoming POLITIX collection?
We’ve focused the first half of AW20 on lighter-weight fabrics and more neutral colours, with a particular focus on the trend colour of the season, tan. For later in the season, we turn to more heritage references with graphic black and white houndstooth, Prince of Wales checks, and larger-scale grid checks. Highlight colours for both formal and casual include teal, wine, and rust.
What makes POLITIX clothing different from other products on the market?
We pride ourselves on developing a great range of fabrics and prints that are exclusive to POLITIX and then designing our ranges with an attention to detail that is unmatched by the competition. We spend a lot of time working on the fit, too, ensuring that when you try a POLITIX product on you feel the difference.
Any iconic fashionable men we should keep our eye on this season?
For timeless style and proof that age is no boundary, Pierce Brosnan and Jeff Goldblum. For on-point gentlemanly style in both formal and casualwear, David Beckham and Eddie Redmayne always hit the mark. For new age style and relevance, Rami Malik and Donald Glover are pushing the boundaries.
Trends seen on the runway can often look exaggerated and complicated, how can everyday Brissy blokes achieve these trends in their day-to-day life?
A runway is a showcase for brands to make a statement, often relying on the ‘shock factor’ to generate publicity. The truth is, all the menswear brands will rely on more classic shapes and colours to drive their business. I’d suggest using colour as a highlight piece in your outfit or dress up one of our slim fit suits with a floral shirt. As we head into autumn, dress the suit down a little with a knit and sneaker for a more relaxed style.
Unfortunately, we don’t get much of a winter here in Queensland. What’s your best advice for staying on trend this AW while staying cool?
Wearing tone on tone is a great way to look on point without needing to layer. Our (new) tan suit separates with our stone shirt is a great way to wear the seasons colour while remaining cool in warmer climates. Alternatively, invest in one of the seasons highlight colours to refresh your wardrobe: a burgundy or tan polo, teal or rust chino. And don’t forget a white sneaker, it’s essential!
What’s your go-to styling advice for those just dipping their toe into fashion?
Keep it simple and feel comfortable in what you wear. Our slim cut suits are a great fit and paired with a classic white shirt and loafer make for timeless style. Dressing down a suit with t-shirt and sneaker is another way to look on trend without trying too hard.
2020 brings in the decade. What trends are hoping to stay dead and what are you looking forward to seeing in this era of fashion?
I can’t think of anything that I hope ‘stay dead’, as nothing is ever entirely new but a re-interpretation of what’s gone before. Silhouettes, fits, and fabrics are updated but I enjoy looking back at fashion through the years and being challenged with updating them for today’s customer. I think the biggest and most exciting development is going to be how we, and other brands, rise to the challenge of sustainable fashion in a world that is starting to demand we do something – conscious fashion is the way forward.
Pocket Square or Lapel Pin
Linen or Cotton?
AW or SS?
Autumn winter – layers, three-piece suits, boots, and the roll neck (probably not in Brisbane though!)
Three-piece suit or blazer & chinos combo?
A slim cut, great quality, white shirt. You can dress it up under a suit or wear it with shorts throughout the summer!
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