NUREYEV AND Baryshnikov were among the dance-themed references for Tomas Maier’s spring 2015 menswear collection for Bottega Veneta. The designer’s vision of those balletic gentlemen took form in slouchy baby-blue knit tights and shell-pink shorts suits. In other words, the kind of pieces that make magazine editors furiously take notes—dance would emerge as one of the season’s trends—but might be a tough sell to your average guy.
When Mr. Maier made his bow, however, it was a different story. The man with the razor-sharp design mind wore a perfectly rumpled, olive-drab Relwen cargo shirt, medium-fade Levi’s and simple black Nike running shoes.
Fashion insiders who push colorful, out-there trends but wear sober basics themselves? The idea isn’t new. But the clothes worn backstage or behind the camera seem more relevant than ever, given the phenomenon of Normcore and a general appreciation of less of-the-moment pieces. Especially when those discreet shirts and trousers are being chosen by people with an encyclopedic knowledge of clothing and an eye for perfection. Plenty of folks looking for style tips would be eager to note that Vogue Paris Editor in Chief Emmanuelle Alt wears Topshop’s skinny Baxter jeans or that Proenza Schouler’s Jack McCollough is partial to a certain denim shirt from Swedish label Acne Studios.
Model Caroline de Maigret —who often plays muse to Karl Lagerfeld—could probably wear head-to-toe Chanel every day of the week if she liked. Instead she adheres to a strict diet of vintage Levi’s, white Acne T-shirts, Blazé blazers and a black leather motorcycle jacket from BLK DNM or Schott NYC. “It’s not about trends,” said Ms. de Maigret, who recently co-wrote the book “How to Be Parisian Wherever You Are: Love, Style and Bad Habits” (Doubleday). “It’s more about finding the right pieces that you can carry with you through the years.” In fact, Ms. de Maigret makes an effort to avoid the popular look of the season. “If there’s a military trend, I’ll put all my military-feeling clothes in the cupboard and then let them out two years later,” she said.