pastel is the new black…in men’s clothing?

I love dressing in bright colors. In fact, I’ve been stopped on several occasions by men thanking me for bringing some color into New York City, where many of the most fashionable women sport black and grey most of the time. I like to stand out a little and so when others scan the racks for the “little black dress,” I’m scoping out the “little pink dress” or the “little red dress.” And rather than choose neutral colors for other items of clothing, I prefer my salmon colored trench coat, my lime green jacket, and my multi-colored pocketbooks. I make sure not to go overboard but, yes, I like to wear bright and colorful pieces because it puts me in a good mood and makes me feel special.

On the contrary, I don’t like it when a man’s attire stands out from the crowd. I’ve never really cared what my boyfriend wore. Most of the time, I barely noticed. As long as he didn’t look like he just rolled out of bed (unless he just rolled out of bed), it made no difference to me. My most recent boyfriend wore his Star Wars and Mellow Yellow T-shirts with jeans at least twice a week and, aside from teasing him on occasion, it didn’t bother me at all. If you asked me what a guy wore on our date, I probably wouldn’t remember, and “dressing well” has never been important to me when deciding whether to go out with a guy or not. That being said, whether a guy is wearing jeans and a t-shirt, a button-down shirt and jeans, cargo-pants and a sweater etc., my only preference is that the colors and prints be relatively non-distinct. I have no problem with a pink button down paired with a grey suit or a pastel sweater paired with blue jeans, but lately, the men in New York City look like a bowl of rainbow sherbet—reds, pinks, yellow, purples all mixed together.



I was sitting outside a restaurant with my friends on Saturday sharing a bottle of Prosecco and, of course, we were people watching and scoping out men. Every third guy who walked past was dressed in some combination of light blue and red, or pink and yellow and I felt like I was crashing a Hampton’s country club in the 1980s. I’m a huge fan of gingham on men, even pink gingham, but paired with blue jeans, not yellow or royal blue pants! To me, this new trend is not manly, nor is it “boyish” or fun. To the contrary, it suggests that the guy takes his fashion too seriously, something I do not find sexy or cute.  My friend Hilda works in retail and told me to just “live with it” because it’s very much in style.


Just because something is “in” doesn’t mean I have to like it!

What about you? How do you feel about this new fashion trend? Does it have the staying power of a Chanel bag or should it disappear forever, making an occasional appearance at Halloween parties, like M.C. Hammer parachute pants?


  1. susieqlaw on June 17, 2014 at 11:13 am

    I love colors and need to wear more pastels. I think mixing a bright pair of red jeans with a bright colored blue shirt (or even in pastels) will take time for me to become the new normal.

    PS. I love gingham too!!!

    • meredithgschorr on June 17, 2014 at 11:31 am

      Gingham is definitely my favorite print 🙂 But red jeans and bright shirts, especially on men, just doesn’t seem right!

  2. Bonnie Trachtenberg on June 17, 2014 at 11:20 am

    I agree. Just went to my stepson’s graduation and was shocked to see how the young men are dressing, especially in a preppy school. Pastel colored shorts with long sleeve button-down shirts and pink and orange ties. Really? Men used to shun looks like that growing up in my world where jeans ruled. Turns out these kids don’t even own a pair of jeans! Bizarre.

    • meredithgschorr on June 17, 2014 at 11:33 am

      Weird, right? I wonder if they are doing it because it is in style or because they truly like it. Or perhaps they are embracing their feminine side. I suppose everyone should have the freedom to wear whatever color he/she likes, but I really don’t like it!

  3. Isabella Louise Anderson on June 17, 2014 at 11:29 am

    Great post! I normally don’t have a problem with how a man dresses, but I don’t like pastel (or any colored) pants. Put a pair of black/charcoal slacks or jeans, give a guy a colored shirt (pink, purple, or whatever), then I’m all his…

  4. meredithgschorr on June 17, 2014 at 11:34 am

    Exactly – I have no problem with colored (or pastel) tops paired with blue or black or khaki on me. It’s the combination of bright pants AND tops that is just too much for me.

  5. Courtney on June 17, 2014 at 3:47 pm

    I could not have said it better myself!!! I personally cannot get into the colored pants on a man… although I have to admit I’ve seen white and red on some of my fave musicians, and maybe it’s because I find them so attractive it works on them lol. But walking down the street my first response is “no, just no”

    • meredithgschorr on June 17, 2014 at 4:00 pm

      I do love white jeans on a hot man. And, yes, musicians get a free pass (most of the time) 🙂

  6. Ruth Mancini on June 17, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    My older friends say that I still wear my school uniform – and before anyone gets the wrong idea about me, they are talking about the colours: navy blue, black and white. Although, I don’t wear white too much anymore since having kids as there is no chance of it staying that colour. I’ve never ‘got’ the whole designer thing and why you would pay thousands for a label or a name so I’m certainly not snobbish about what other people wear either. For me, it’s what’s inside that counts, although it’s nice if a man makes an effort for you, of course!

    • meredithgschorr on June 17, 2014 at 5:04 pm

      Haha, that was funny since at first I did think you meant you wore a school girl’s uniform 🙂 I hope my post didn’t come across that I am snobbish about what people wear – on the contrary – like I said, usually I don’t even notice and have never not dated a guy because of what he wore. What’s inside is certainly more important but it doesn’t mean I have to like what a guy wears on the outside- and I really don’t like this new trend!

  7. eileengoudge on June 17, 2014 at 5:43 pm

    You rocked that pink dress on Pizza Night! As for pink pants on men…? Hmmm. My husband would have to be tied down for me to get some pink pants on him. He’s traditional in his menswear.

    • meredithgschorr on June 17, 2014 at 5:45 pm

      Thank you, Eileen! I love that dress – Old Navy 🙂

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