BY MARK, MENSWEAR, HOME & ELECTRICALS EDITOR ON 8 OCT 2012 17:25 AUTUMN/WINTERCOMMENTS
They are amongst the most unlikely fashion icons the world has ever seen – but fishermen have been named as the driving force behind a new trend hitting the British high streets this winter.
The popularity of exciting and macho fishing television programmes such as Deadliest Catch and Extreme Fishing with Robson Green have made fishing cool again and transformed the image of clothing traditionally associated with seafaring pursuits.
Demand for duffle coats, cream cable knit jumpers, chunky woollen socks, stripy t-shirts, and rugged boots has soared over the last month with further increases expected as the cold weather continues.
Currently up on the year are chunky boots – up 81 per cent, boat shoes – up 195 per cent, thick woollen socks – up 27 per cent, duffle coats – up 25 per cent, striped t-shirts – up 25 per cent, thermal underwear – up 67 per cent and heavy knits – up 55 per cent.
Inspired by the likes of One Direction, David Beckham, David Cameron and Noel Gallagher, it seems British men are falling hook, line and sinker for the look.
Lizzie Singleton, spokesperson for Debenhams, said: “No longer just the hobby of a solitary riverbank dweller, these TV shows have made ‘fisherman fashion’, the humble duffle coat, waterproof trousers and obligatory chunky socks and thermals, the must have look for autumn/winter 2011.
“Even Trawlermen, documenting the tough times of the Peterhead and Fraserburgh fishing fleets and arguably the most unlikely fashion icons, has shown the average British landlubber the masculine appeal of a hardy seaman”.
Influenced by designers such as Alexander McQueen, Burberry and Paul Smith parading the angling look on the autumn winter 2012 catwalks, the on trend way to wear fisherman fashion is in bold colours, with large pockets on duffles, teamed with boots and a beanie hat.
Debenhams has also seen the look start to translate into womenswear with bright duffle coats, cable knit jumpers and chunky cardigans worn by the likes of Alexa Chung leading the way.
Singleton added: “The tough, capable image of seafaring clothing seems to have chimed with the mood of the nation during the financial difficulties.
“Knowing that you are well equipped to cope with everything life can throw at you – no matter how hard the going becomes – is now seen as essential to weather the economic storm.
“Warm, hardwearing and now stylish, these items herald the return of practical fashion that will see you through the season and beyond”.