Evolution of Menswear Fashion in Pakistan

Being in a society like Pakistan where the things have been tumultuous since decades, there have been countless occasions where our society has been carried away, polarized with an ideology and unaccepting welcoming values of others. This is to say, the attitude of manifesting grandiosity and looking down on others became a common notion. For instance, religious differences, people were being sternly stemmed to the traditional values and customs. Life seemed mundane and oppressive with a miniscule segment of society following the fashion trends and fads in last couple of decades.

Last Few of Fashion Decades:

Fashion in the 80’s saw dad jeans in full force, often with a matching denim jacket. T-shirts and loose shirts were also popular during the time while bomber jackets, leather jackets, windbreakers, and sweaters acted as the outerwear of choice. When it came to footwear, white sneakers were the ultimate casual shoe that’s perfect for a range of looks. Hip-hop as well punk rock was another popular fashion trend in the80’s, inspired and influenced by music rockstars and rappers. During the 80’s, suits were worn oversized with broad shoulders. For those in business, pinstripe suits were a favorite and men would often pair them with a shirt, tie, and suspenders. Outside the office, pastel-colored suits were on high rotation and were regularly partnered with crew-neck T-shirts instead of button-ups. However, the 90’s fashion was a total contrast of 80’s. That is to say, fashion became simpler as compared to flashy, exaggerated trends of 80’s. Moreover, the 90’s fashion was bombarded with the grunge and alternative rock that continued till 2000’s. Although, in Pakistan these trends were followed sporadically, this is because there was no internet access and people did not have awareness about the global fashion trends and fads. It can be said that those who were in a constant relation with west were more informed of these occurrences and major chunk of society was oblivious.

Progression of Retail:

In the 90’s and early 2000’s the fashion retail business operated vaguely. In other words, the retailers did not function on how a fashion brand works. The operational procedure instigated when the buyers visited international grounds and buying merchandise, that was available containing the elements of latest global trends. Furthermore, the merchandise was imported in the country and then displayed on the stores. That is to say, what we call gray market in the modern day, in addition, there were branded merchandise stores in that era which were renowned to sell clothing inspired from global trends, for example Pace, Raja Sahib, Liberty market, J rocks and many more.

However, the whole situation changed in the later part of 2000’s when the sources of information became overwhelming, the dynamics of retail also shifted. Many buyers who were operating under gray market and supplying stocks to branded merchandise stores realized a market gap, and instigated to manufacture their own product line under their own name. In other words, the concept of branding and exclusivity started which was a remarkable development. Some of the earliest examples are Stoneage, Crossroads, Outfitters, Royal Tag and many others.

Moreover, this change was not only observed in the development of brands but it was an overall transition in the country that faced repercussions of 9-11. Therefore, in a last decade or so the situation has totally transformed. As, the industry which provided fashion in ambivalent forms transformed in a brand that invested on R&D, created merchandising departments, started making products that were globally in fashion and with whom the buyers could relate themselves with.

Modern Day Retail & Preeminent Brands:

The wave and evolution of retail which started in early 2000’s through standalone stores shifted to operate in mega malls such as Packages, Emporium and others. This breakthrough came in 2016-2017 that created a new wave of fashion dynamic. Moreover, with the introduction of brands like Monark menswear which introduced the idea of theme-based clothing line associating and targeting youth who yearned for smart causal clothing, the whole industry elicited a new transition. To cope with changing trends and fashion other brands also revamped themselves as people became fashion savvy, it became tough to deceive with traditional maneuvers and manipulations which many have done in the past. In recent days, we have a saturated market of menswear brands that primarily focus on demographics and psychographics of a targeted segment.

To conclude, it can be said that this is the best time for menswear fashion in Pakistan because the amount of information is awe-inspiring which is convenient if you are a smart person, furthermore the desire to wear the latest global trends and flaunt it is no longer an insatiable thing. We can be grateful to the world becoming a global village. It is impossible that a trend manifested at a New York fashion week will stay elusive. It will immediately become an ornament of fast fashion and will be in your wardrobe in no time.

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