Last night marked the 40th edition of the Brit Awards, the isle’s equivalent of the Grammy’s. For us British folk who genuinely thought the ceremony was canceled in 1996, it’s a surprise that not only is it still happening, but seemingly thriving.
The evening’s highlights included Billie Eilish performing “No Time To Die,” her track for the upcoming Bond movie, and Tyler, the Creator being recognized as Best International Male Artist, an amusing change in fortunes given he was literally banned from entering the UK in 2015. Appropriately, the IGOR star dedicated his award to former UK Prime Minister, Theresa May.
The biggest news on the night, however, came when Harry Styles wore a trio of outfits that whipped stans and fashion-heads alike into a frenzy. Styles’ name was soon trending on Twitter, not just because of his live performance, but his brazen suiting and schoolgirl-inspired footwear.
So what’s working here? The double-breasted chocolate brown suit is from Gucci’s Fall/Winter 2020 collection, which Styles wore with a lace “Peter Pan” collar, a pearl necklace, and lavender nail polish. A black ribbon was pinned to his lapel, reportedly as a tribute to his former girlfriend, the late Caroline Flack.
The fit of the pants, the doily-like material on the collar, and the unsuspecting brown/mauve color combination is pure Alessandro Michele, who has worked with Styles on a number of show-stopping red carpet looks that play into a softer and more feminine aesthetic. It’s evident that Styles has been trying to pivot away from the “Topman” vibe associated with his One Direction years, and good for him, although we wish he’d attended to the loose thread hanging off the front of his sweater. Maybe it got caught on one of his many, many rings?
It’s a strong arrival moment, but what takes it to another level is the low strap, cut-out mary jane shoes that have been paired with a cream sock. Given we’ve seen high heels, platforms, and other, more effeminate footwear crop up in men’s fashion as of late, perhaps these schoolgirl-inspired straps will inspire more guys to try on something less severe than say, a standardized Chelsea boot. Should they take off, let’s remember Tyler did it first!
On stage, Styles got even more experimental, performing his track “Falling” in a custom Gucci lace jumpsuit with flute cuffs, the aforementioned pearl necklace, and embellished gloves. It’s a bold, perhaps even bombastic look, with the billowing sleeves and suspenders bordering on slightly comical. Sorry!
Styles’ third and final fit was pulled from Marc Jacobs’ Spring/ Summer 2020 show, where it was originally worn on a female model. Styles (with credit to his stylist Harry Lambert) has outdone himself here with a ’70s silhouette, lavender scarf, a polka dot shirt to match his manicure, and white single monk strap shoes. It should be noted the singer is not the first to rock the banana Marc Jacobs suit, as Lady Gaga actually wore it on the December issue of Elle last year. Not that it matters, of course.
Did Styles nail all his fits? Perhaps not. But still, among the cavalcade of bland suits and, even worse, jeans and trainers, it’s refreshing to see young artists of his ilk at least putting in some effort. We’ll give him 7.5/10 — good, but with room for some refinement.
We’ve rounded up the key looks below along with some similar styles should you feel inspired to replicate the bold suiting yourself.