Pitti Uomo closes another successful edition. According to the show’s organization, the four-day-show was attended by more than 36,000 visitors of which almost 25,000 were buyers - a plus of 2.5% when compared to the January 2017 edition (which was already a very successful edition).
The general impression was that attendance reached its peak on Wednesday, the second day. A very positive and busy atmosphere pervaded the show. Whilst the styling and fashion level on the show grounds was high as usual, the whole Pitti peacocking seemed to have decreased. Was it due to the mostly uniform and dark-colored outerwear that winter season brings naturally or do we really see a decline in eccentric and daring outfits here? We can’t really tell before summer.
Many upcoming designers and new talents – including interesting Finnish, Korean and Japanese designers, were in the spotlight during this Pitti’s fashion shows and special events. Amongst the most hyped ones were clearly two events on Thursday: The Undercover by Jun Takahashi show at Stazione Leopolda and the three (!) showcases presenting the first full ready-to-wear collection by culture magazine 032c at Palazzo Medici Riccardi, including a Gin Bar personally run by ex-Mytheresa/Brioni, now SSS World Corp maker Justin O’Shea.
Back to the ‘80s
Definitely the ‘80s are everywhere. M1992, renamed from ‘Malibu’ and designed by creative director Dorian Stefano Tarantini, redesigned icons from the past including pieces from El Charro, Meltin’Pot and College loafers in a modern-meets-‘80s attitude. The streetwear and skater apparel brand Element also bets on a relaunch, strongly focusing on iconic ‘80s elements like reinterpreted Keith Haring prints, a capsule collection with Polaroid print pattern and a selection of oversize puffa jackets designed in collaboration with sportswear guru Jeff Griffin.
Oversize is a must
Oversize is everywhere – from comfy Roy Roger's jeans and jackets (also padded with down inners), to the special oversize Woolrich capsule collection of down jackets designed by Jeff Griffin. Also footwear is rich of bulky and thick models. Amongst them there are outdoor boots by Lumberjack, rain boots by Tretorn, a new footwear line by Birkenstock or lots and lots of dad-style “ugly sneakers”.
Sundek, launching its first winter collection, presented a selection of synthetic sheepskin sweats and reversible jackets. Blauer opted for innovative multi-material pieces incorporating, for instance, nylon details, neoprene and sheepskin elements in the same style.
More and more brands put a focus on sustainability. Geospirit, reborn and relaunched for this edition, takes a fur-free direction and presented models carrying zero animal fur, or simply being decorated with artistic interpretations of animal prints and feather reproductions. Blauer launched a selection of pieces made by recycling old high-quality down previously used in blankets, now washed, sterilized and re-employed for padding new jackets. Mackage, the Canadian luxury jacket brand, opts for new models employing less fur than in the past.
Also Pepe Jeans is betting strong on eco-friendliness: they aim to increase their share of pieces treated by their patented Wiser Wash technology (employing no chemicals, one cup of water and 70% less energy) from 25% to 100% of their collection.
North Sails also presented a selection of pieces produced by re-employing recycled PET fibers.
Research & Innovation
Matching the season, outerwear was a big topic. Coats and jackets are generally a great product group for demonstrating your knowledge and research skills about new materials, finishes etc. Functional fabrics gain more and more importance and features such as seamless fusing, light-weightiness or water-repellency are dominating the offers of brands such as Nanamica, Snow Peak, Arc’teryx, RRD, Belstaff or Peak Performance.
Also Canadian outdoor jacket brand Nobis is offering more pieces characterized by urban and more sober silhouettes with seamless and bonded components. Ten C, Italian outerwear apparel brand, offers jackets made from a special OJJ Japanese high-density jersey. These impressive smart-sporty jackets are entirely laser cut and bonded.
Fabrics innovation was especially impressively demonstrated in the ‘Athlovers’ area. Here, upcoming designer brands 42.54, Aeance, Dyne, Gr1ps, Isaora were showcasing their beautiful athleisure collections, each featuring a garment made using fabrics from the ‘Active Line’ of Reda, the historic Italian textile firm.
Knitwear and wool are also playing a key role in modern wardrobes. The Alpha Studio knitwear collection presented a variety of 100% wool pieces employing new mélange effects and changing optics. Hommard, a Dutch cashmere knitwear brand only employing true Mongolia high-quality yarns, has developed new cuts and pieces also inspired by sportswear, such as western style cut jackets and sporty bombers.
Debuting for this season was the French brand Fleurs de Bagne. It is entirely made in France and offers vintage-inspired French workwear such as wool jackets and knitwear, waxed cotton jackets and workwear cotton trousers.
Here's our compilation of the best/most striking brands, trends and happenings on and around the showgrounds:
Newcomers to watch:
LYPH from Manchester, employing Japanese fabrics, but offering reasonable prices; their signature: de- and retachable pockets
Giacomo Morelli, who makes all parts of his sportswear-meet-tailoring debut menswear collection, Giacomo Morelli MRLGCM, in his homeland, the Marche region in Central Italy
Best relaunch: Best Company is back with revamped sweatshirts carrying the renowned embroidered logo but also with new material mixes bearing a new logo characterized by geometric initials and new texture macro prints of the brand’s sweatshirt weave.
Best team-up: Peak Performance x Nigel Cabourn’s second joint collection
The fabric: Corduroy
The look: Dad style - especially in accessories and shoes!
The shoes: Rubber-loaded hybrid shoes
The topseller: Colorful puffa jackets (Schott)
The most-worn footwear around: The 10 by Virgil Abloh for Nike (eeeeverywhere!)
Most in-demand jacket: Heavyweight lambskin biker jackets (Cockpit USA)
New denim: Italia Independent has debuted its new, all made-in-Italy denim pieces
Most creative denim: Gas presented its newest collection, celebrating young Tuscan artisans who employed denim and jeans details most creatively - for instance, for ceramic vases equipped with zippers and buttons, hand-decorated and hand-painted denim pieces or other unique uses.
Most impressive booth: Covered in palm trees and other plants, Birkenstock build a massive container that was filled with a home-like interior and footwear workshop exuding a warm and natural atmosphere
Best party: A cool party at Ex Manifattura Tabacchi filled with celebrities (Adrien Brody!) and insiders celebrated Replay‘s newest 3D stretch jeans Hyperflex+
Happiest birthday: Denham and Candiani celebrated their 10th and 80th anniversary respectively in a joint event visited by denim aficionados and fans of these two leaders of the denim market.