Gap X GQ: Best New Menswear Designers In America 2019
en years is a long time in menswear. In fact, history shows a decade’s more than enough time for a new brand on the block – no matter the heights it first reached – to slip through the cracks. Sure, emerging designers’ first headlines herald them as the new messiahs of men’s fashion, but more often than not it’s a matter of months before they’re languishing at the bottom of a bargain basement.
Not soGQ’s Best New Menswear Designers in America. Selected annually by the style bible’s bigwigs,GQ’s BNMDAs are anything but flash-in-the-pan – just look at last year’s crop, including David Hart and Stampd, whose limited-edition collections for Gap were near instant sell-outs.
This year, to mark ten years of ordaining America’s Best New Menswear Designers (and five years of Gap xGQBNMDA collections flying off the shelves) the BNMDA project has returned to its roots, for the first time welcoming back some of its previous winners. Breakout talent then, big names now, the decennial crop includes , , and – all of whom have partnered with all-American retailer Gap for what’s set to be another flyaway collection.
“We wanted to make the 10th anniversary of this program feel like its own declaration, a snapshot of the state of American fashion,” saidGQeditor-in-chief Jim Nelson of 2019’s collaboration. “We also wanted to make the clothes instantly wearable, easily attainable, and flat-out covetable. With these four exciting designers, and with Gap’s exceptional partnership, I think we hit the sweet spot.”
Meet the designers (still) making it big:
New York might’ve seen its fair share of menswear designers flounder, but king of prep Michael Bastian has stayed the course. The secret? Giving men clothes they can actually wear.
Starting out in 2006, Bastian never made bones about the fact that his clothes weren’t out-and-out revolutionary, but remixes of menswear classics instead: think Ivy League grad meets Wall Street stockbroker meets – and plays a game of baseball with – upstate dad. It’s proved a winning formula for legions of American men not served by streetwear, earning Bastian two BNMDA wins (and that’s not even including this one).
The suit: a mash-up of office-ready smart-casual staples and activewear that skews outdoorsy rather than athleisure. There’s a blazer and duffle bag, but distressed jeans, joggers and a flannel shirt too – the kind of stuff that might not buck trends, but is anything but boring.
Video: Introducing the Coolest Designers on the Planet Right Now | GQ
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