Finally! May’s meetup focused on menswear in Indy. I am not sure if it was the a good or bad decision, but Pattern asked me to moderate the panel of local brands meeting the style needs of Indy’s men. I have been a Pattern contributor for over two years, and I still remember the overzealous first post about Indy’s Fashion Revolution. In the fashion world, women’s wear gets all the attention. The past few years menswear has really stepped up to offer fashion pieces, as opposed to just functional pieces for men. The uniform for Indy’s men has long been Affliction shirts and carpenter jeans, maybe a fancy Express shirt if going out. I am not sure when it started, but men have started really embracing a personal style. It is still hard to identify what Indy’s menswear style is, but at least the men in Indy are stepping up their game.
Pattern invited a mix of some of the local menswear and men’s accessory brands. Catou, J. Benzal, 12 Fold, ToolBox, and No Bad Ideas were invited to share information from their perspective. There was too much to talk about in the short time span, but it felt great to have that conversation in Indianapolis. It was exciting to hear about veteran clothing designer Berny Martin share about his brand starting local and recently showeing on other side of the world. J. Benzal shared about his boutique on Mass Ave that has become a favorite among Indy Car drivers. 12 Fold and Toolbox are new to Indy, offering men unique options like specialty underwear and pocket squares. Andy Moss from No Bad Ideas shared a little about being a streetwear brand that has grown to being sold in national Lids and other specialty stores.
Indy might not have the daily dapper look like some cities, but Indy is still forming its own style among men. You know I love me some social media, and I have seen local professionals starting to get more on trend. It can be done. I would identify it as more of an understated approach to style, but it is there.
5 points to take away from Meetup:
 Men are shopping. They like to shop someplace besides the expected mall stores.
 Indianapolis men need to be better informed of trends and styling.
 Indy brands have to start thinking creatively to get their messages out beyond the “fashion circle”
 Indy might not be the most trendy place for menswear, but that is not to say that Indy doesn’t have its own relevant style.
 There is interest in discussing deeper talking points about menswear in Indy. Feel free to leave a comment with topics about menswear that interest you.