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  Suit down with Applecore

Suit down with Applecore

Published : Sep 15, 2015, 11:18 pm IST
Updated : Sep 15, 2015, 11:18 pm IST

Move over normcore, Applecore has usurped your place as the unexpected male fashion trend of the season

Apple CEO Tim Cook
 Apple CEO Tim Cook

Move over normcore, Applecore has usurped your place as the unexpected male fashion trend of the season

If you thought the debut of a gigantic new iPad was the most important development to be gleaned from the recent Apple event held in San Francisco, you might just be in for a surprise. Aside from the slew of shiny new iPhones with snazzy new features to boot, the tech giant’s senior staff — CEO Tim Cook, Senior VP Jeff Williams, Phil Schiller, Eddy Cue and Craig Federighi — also ended up setting the stage for an unexpected new male fashion trend: Applecore. Initially coined fairly literally, in terms of the tribe sporting the look (‘Apple Dad’), Applecore is now a global catchphrase and defines a casual-yet-carefully-considered look for men in the upper echelons of power.

 

Fashion designer Komal Sood shares, “I find Applecore an interesting phrase, given the gigantic exposure of Apple in most of our lives. However, I also believe that IT honchos everywhere have been dressing this way since they left college, so as a trend it’s not exactly new — it’s just being used by some very successful men.” Talking about the trend vis a vis power dressing she adds, “You still need to power dress when you play down.

She goes on, “The concept of power dressing is not going to go. When you see the Applecore dressing style, be assured that all those shirts and jeans and casual trousers are extremely expensive, probably branded and of the best fabrics possible. Anyway, I believe that Americans will always be dressed down while the Europeans will be power dressed. This has been on for years. It’s a status quo. Now it’s up to the rest of the world to make their choice. In India, there is a significant move towards dressing down. We have most brands doing dressing down corporate wear and companies are also getting used to this.”

 

How to nail the look Komal reveals, “For me it has to be dressed down but tailored. So casual wear is fine but it’s important to get the fit right. No loose baggy clothing, instead go for a smart slim-fitted dressed down look. With a strong bias towards comfort, wear sharp shirts in bright colours with some styling everywhere. It should look like you’ve been styled to dress down and not just picked up anything randomly from your cupboard.”

Fashion designer Pallavi Mohan, on the other hand, feels that power dressing is on its way out. She says, “Fashion is now being demarcated into one’s own personal style sensibilities rather than just following trends. Power dressing as a trend will soon become passé as everyone likes to keep it simple and relaxed, especially in the hustle bustle of the corporate world. Applecore not only appeals to the eye but also sets a mood that’s tranquil and yet not too laid back. Simplicity is what it all ultimately comes down to and that can never go out of fashion. Till the time you’re comfortable with what you wear, comfort styling or dressing a tad more at ease works very well.”

 

Stylist Rishabh Kapoor cautions that when it comes to variations of power dressing, the line between casual and inappropriate is a thin one and should be straddled with tremendous care. He avers, “With Applecore, the concept is to be relaxed while at the same time being appropriately formal. You dress down just enough to still look dressed up for taking to a stage with a billion eyes on you. So, you need clean lines: a pair of well-fitted, straight-cut denims in a suitably dull shade of blue and a well-ironed formal collared shirt that you can tuck in or leave out neatly. What you can play around with a little bit is the colour of your shirt and your footwear, the way Eddy Cue wore a fantastic red shirt with red sneakers at the Apple event. Be careful about your choice of sneakers, though. They’ll need to be a classic enough pair by a good enough brand. Don’t go crazy trying on neons there.

 

Also for the shirt, pick a plain one or at the most one with generously spread out checks or stripes in the same colour as the base. No ostentatious or quirky prints, please. You’re headed for the boardroom, not the beach.”

He also explains how Applecore differs fundamentally from Normcore, whose evolution it is being touted as. “Normcore is about blending in instead of standing out. Applecore, on the other hand, is still about standing out. You can’t have top tech honchos looking like the cast of Seinfeld, na To me personally, Applecore would be more adequately described as a laid back version of power dressing. Different from the latter in that it is much more relaxed and easy, but similar to it in that it still packs a formal and sophisticated punch intended specifically for the high-end boardroom,” he affirms.

 

IT professional Ankit Mehra agrees and adds, “Dress code differs from industry to industry. While Normcore is a unisex trend and applicable across all age groups, Applecore appears to be restricted to men in their 40s and 50s. However, it doesn’t mean that the younger generation can’t emulate this trend. I belong to the IT industry where smart casuals is the standard dress code. Although Normcore endorsed by Steve Jobs was iconic, that dressing sense was discouraged at many organisations, but this new trend is smarter and brings sharpness to casuals. So, I feel this trend will catch on at the higher levels of organisations and percolate down to all levels. It is quintessentially for people in IT - it is like a brand that represents the geeks these days. On the other hand, I also feel that on occasions like networking interviews, etc. people will still follow power dressing, which is majorly enforced in conservative and traditional industries like banking, consulting, law investment, etc.”