Frost Birgens A/W 2010

Frost Birgens’ Fall/Winter collection gives the term “cozy” a bit more credibility this season, with focus on trending sweats, billowy shirting and tailored jackets. The collection boasts the idea of “ease of wear” without being cliche – there are no full sweat suits, Christmas sweaters or why-do-they-keep-coming-back corduroy pants. Instead, there are tweaks to the details that traditionally define a menswear wardrobe, which is the first step toward reformatting the norms of our endlessly repetitious menswear domain. Subtlety is key, because most men won’t take enormous leaps.

First of all, I would like to editorialize a bit and say that this pair of red sweats is probably one of the best pieces I have seen this season. I say this because the button closure detailing and the tapered leg mimic a long john or union suit for those who aren’t willing to jump into underwear-as-outerwear as a seasonal trend. They also look so comfortable that I could probably live in them all season long, cozying up next to a fireplace with a warm cider. Please, join me as I romanticize.

The details continue in the cut of the cardigan, noticing the rounded off hem creating the “shrunken” or “heirloom” aesthetic that is always popular. And nothing could complete this look better than a plaid shirt – but in this instance, there is no strictly-business tailoring, because it would not help accent the head to toe look. Instead, the fit is normalized, with less emphasis on a “slim fit” and more focus on the necessity of “casual” fits for layering. When layering, it is essential to pick pieces that follow or accent the proportions you choose to work with. In this case, the cardigan brings everything together with its will-it-or-won’t-it fit, while the remaining pieces serve to add dimension from the slouch in the pant and freedom of the shirting.

Frost Birgens certainly has a knack for playful details, including patches over knees and oversized buttons on what would otherwise be a traditional henley. These details are what set Frost Birgens apart from other contemporary menswear labels. While some opt to define masculinity, Frost Birgens translates what may already be known about menswear by subtly re-evaluating conventions.

But these subtleties do not translate to costume or novelty. Each piece is something that could add interest to a run of the mill or perfected mens wardrobe – they are statement pieces without being garish. And isn’t that what we’re all looking for? For fashion to be fun? Not this endless montage of costume changes with one outfit proving more uncomfortable than the next.

If you had the choice between suffering for fashion and enjoying stylish comfort (with a touch of dandy) , I’d think it’d be a no-brainer, but you tell me.

The jackets, practically Sgt. Pepper-inspired nod to the trend of military, without being as rigid, or form fitting. The jacket itself provides a flattering silhouette, but like most of the collection, there is the sense that it wouldn’t be as troubling to wear as other seasonal options. In fact, apart from the fastenings, details are kept minimal, continuing with the rounded hem, which emphasizes any base layers, like a boat neck sweater and a collar-less shirt (seen below).

Whether it is the two-toned pants, double-buttoned necks, geometric pockets or even the tapered sweat, it is hard to not find something appealing in this season’s Frost Birgen collection. It has dandy elements without being too flouncy and the looser fits illustrate an adaption of work wear silhouettes, making Frost Birgens A/W 2010 accessible to those men seeking comfort and style. So, all of us.

Images courtesy of Frost Birgens

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