Men's style to the fore

With the men of Melbourne knowing more than a thing or two about dressing well, Melbourne Spring Fashion Week has decided to pay heed with its first evening dedicated to male fashion. For tonight only, the high heels will be put back in the rack as the best of Melbourne menswear takes over the MSFW: Hub at the City Square.

The free MSFW: Mr event will showcase the best of Melbourne's designers and allow the city's men to preview the looks that will be seen this season from home-grown labels such as Autonomy, Jack London, Calibre and Kings of Carnaby.

As fashion savvy as Melbourne's men are, organisers know that a runway show isn't everyone's cup of tea so tonight will also include displays and free style workshops. Here guys can seek inspiration and guidance on how to achieve the season's latest looks, or resolve nagging sartorial quandaries with the good folk from shoe store Beggar Man Thief, made-to-measure tailors Oscar Hunt and footwear label Aquila.

Being the fashion capital of Australia, MSFW organisers know that it's not just Melbourne's women who tend to take a style and make it their own.

"Think of how the looks we see on Collins Street differ from say, Flinders Lane. It's more than just dressing corporate or casual, indie or tailored. The men of this city have a good handle on what the trends are and how to inject it into their own personal style," says Valentina Jovanoska, producer of the MSFW: Mr event.

According to Jules Lichtenstein, head tailor at made-to-measure tailors Oscar Hunt, men's fashion in Melbourne is surging ahead.

“You can definitely notice that guys in general are paying more attention to the way they dress.”

For Lichtenstein this is being fuelled not only by men wanting to look good, but by men taking a greater interest in the fundamentals of dressing well.

“Other businesses in a similar vein to ours have been popping up more frequently over the last three to five years. And with the influence of the internet, not only on shopping but in viewing clothes and reading about fashion through blogs, it's never been easier to get inspiration or simply gain a greater understanding of what classic menswear is,” Lichtenstein says.

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Of course as timeless as the fundamentals are, there are always the trends of the season that need to be taken into account.

And here is where guys who aren't frequent or overly enthusiastic shoppers get a little break. Unlike the task set for women where the purchase of one item can often necessitate the purchase of many more, men can get away with refreshing a versatile wardrobe with just a few savvy buys.

So the stage is set for both fashion forward types and those just wanting to look a bit fashionable. And if matching shirts, suits and shoes starts to get a bit overwhelming, there is the Kopparberg Cider Bar in which to grab a drink, the true must-have accessory for any male shopping trip.

The MSFW:Mr event will be hosted at Melbourne's City Square tonight, with shows at 6.30 and 8.30pm and displays and style workshops throughout the evening. For more information visit melbourne.vis.gov.au/msfw. is the official media partner of Melbourne Spring Fashion Week.