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Item of the week: the singlet

By Rachel Douglass



(From left) Nudie Jeans, Madewell, O'Neill. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

What it is:

A singlet typically refers to a standard sleeveless top. Yet while simple, the silhouette was undoubtedly one of the most popular in menswear SS24 collections. While the look was initially linked to the underwear category, typically layered under workwear in the early 19th century, it eventually made its way into sportswear in the second half of the century, worn to enhance the movements of athletes. Later, the item seeped into the world of fashion, favoured by rock musicians and gay men of the 1970s and -80s. Now, the singlet is a staple wardrobe addition, genderless in its form and must-have to complete a wardrobe.

O'Neill. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

Why you’ll want it:

For SS24, the singlet was a standout item, seen in an array of prints, materials and colours, exhibiting the vast amount of variations it is now available in. The piece itself is popular among both men and women as an effortless outfit alternative for warm days, or as a piece that can be easily layered alongside other items. Being completely genderless in most cases also means that there are less boundaries placed on the top, allowing it to appeal to a broader audience and cross borders.

Original Penguin. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

Where we’ve seen it:

The singlet appeared in various styles in the collections of menswear for the upcoming season. Simple iterations of the vest could be seen at Givenchy, Rick Owens and Junya Watanabe, each of whom stuck to black and white colourways. Knitted singlets were particularly popular on the runways, however, either in fluffy, mohair-style looks like Wales Bonner, diamond knit at Lgn Louis Gabriel Nouchi or mesh techniques, as present at Fendi. Others took on more experimental forms. While Lazoschmidl offered up cut-out, swimwear-like pieces, Botter displayed a singlet that appeared to resemble the texture of a wicker construction.

Chimi. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

How to style it:

A singlet can be used as a standalone item, however layering the piece makes it a lot more interesting and brings some depth to an outfit. One example of such a technique is using a knit tank over the top of an oversized shirt, which can be further elevated by adding a scarf or necktie to finish the outfit off. A button-up in a more flowing material makes the perfect over-layer for the singlet, providing the wearer with a useful piece to bring on cooler spring/summer nights.

Hurley. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

The singlet, with all of its history, has become a modern-day staple, a must-have of the wardrobes for both men and women. Next to its prominence on the runway, the look provides customers with an effortless garment to cater to their summer needs.

HE. Credits: FashionUnited Marketplace.

Similar items available for (pre)order can be found in the FashionUnited Marketplace. You can find them by clicking on this link.

Item of the Week