You probably think of Valentine’s Day hearts first when it comes to imagery associated with the month of February, but it’s really the month that the stars come out. The year’s shortest month brings award shows, All-Star games, the Super Bowl and various events which are the proverbial Super Bowl for specific demographics.
All throughout the year’s second month America live-tweets a host of star-studded events which dominate water cooler discussion during the work week.
With the Golden Globes completed, our next big awards gala is the Grammys on Monday February 15th. From a fashion standpoint, these two events are the preliminary rounds of the style season; heading into the fashionista Super Bowl known as the Oscars, on Sunday February 28th.
At the 58th annual Grammy awards, some men will wear tuxedos, others will sport a suit, or something smart casual or “cas” (pronounced “cazh”) as Millenials like to say. The biggest night in music will once again take place in Los Angeles; live from the Staples Center. Fitting, as the city of Angels is indeed the capital of the American music industry.
Hollywood hasn’t previously been regarded a fashion capital, on par with New York City, London, Paris or Milan. However, as a recent Wall Street Journal article points out, the La-la land reputation is changing.
If the idea of smart casual has a hometown, it’s L.A, and SoCal’s local style will permeate the looks we see that night.
We start at the top with host L.L. Cool J, who rocked a black Armani velvet suit, classic bowtie, and leather shoes when he hosted the event in 2012. I couldn’t agree more with the assessment of his outfit by Men’s Health.
Black will once again be the new black this year, just like it was in 2015. Actor Donald Glover was named one of GQ’s top best dressed men at last year’s edition, and you can see the similarities between his outfit and LL Cool J’s.
The Grammys’ most memorable outfits through the years have been over-the-top, flesh fests (and whatever outrageous ensemble Lady Gaga brought to the table), but I would expect the men to play it safe with classic looks. Expect most gentlemen to wear monochromatic fitted suits, with blue being the color of choice for those who don’t want to wear black.
Everything 1990s nostalgic is really hot now across the board, so expect a homage to early ’90s here and there. The commercial and critical success of the musician biopic “Straight Outta Compton” perfectly illustrates what era mainstream pop culture is throwing back to right now. N.W.A. are a big reason black is such a popular color to wear again in 2016.
This trend keeps with the L.A. theme, as will the analysis of the sunglasses we see on the red carpet come Grammy night. In Los Angeles, sunglasses are just as important as any other article of clothing, so it will be fascinating to see which men can pull off the shades and black tie combination.
It’s very difficult, but there is a rare breed of man who truly can.
Paul M. Banks is a regular contributor to RedEye, the Chicago Tribune's youth-oriented daily newspaper. He appears regularly on WGN's CLTV (usually wearing a sport coat with skinny jeans) and KOZN 1620 The Zone. Banks previously contributed to the NBC Chicago and Washington Times websites. He currently owns and manages The Sports Bank.net, partnered with FOX Sports Engage Network and News Now. Growing up with three older sisters and no brothers, he inevitably ended up a member of #TeamOverDressed