A relaxed attitude with influences from the sports and workwear worlds mixed with a 60s-meet-70s attitude are the dominant menswear highlights for fall/winter 2014-15. That is what emerged at the Milan Menswear Week that just recently came to end.
The Milanese catwalk selection presented many shades of gray, as well as low-key blues and blacks, plus some new entries – bordeaux outfits (Costume National, Emporio Armani) and touches of color including dusty light blues (Gucci) and vibrant orange elements (Z Zegna) to as the perfect addition to wardrobes.

Short and clean
Jackets are getting slightly shorter and so are trousers (Marni) - often disclosing white socks,  a big mistake for those in the know. But – especially in fashion – rules are made to be broken with some irony. Trousers often come in knitted materials or jerseys and often include an elastic waistband (Marni, Julian Zigerli, Andrea Ompilio), showing how fashion has recently been taking a more relaxed and cozy approach to everyday life. Coats are often belted and completed with huge revers (in some cases as for the new Ermenegildo Zegna designed by Stefano Pilati they can be wrapped around the neck). Ties were only rarely showing up – apart from Prada which had their models wear them knotted as a scarf. The white shirt is another must – even better if completed with a huge print as presented by Antonio Marras. Knitwear is often interpreted in the guise of ethnic jacquard tops (Antonio Marras, Guglielmo Capone) or in longer variants to be worn as coats (Canali, Ermanno Scervino).

Materials matter
Neoprene was employed by many designers. Of these, Antonio Marras offered bordeaux blazers and Armani reinvented its asymmetric closed biker jackets. Gucci built a whole wardrobe out of neoprene by designing a black pea coat with huge buttons, a vest reminiscent of a Western-style model, a sweater and a workwear jacket. Neil Barrett reinvents coats in sweatshirt materials, Ermenegildo Zegna employs superlight specially treated wools for coats and jackets. Furs were everywhere (fake or real ones, but visible) used in full coats and jackets or as details completing a knitted top or jackets. Calvin Klein reinterpreted some must-haves from the world of casual and workwear styles in lucid satin – alternating between beige or pearl-gray.
A lot of  denim and a generally '80s inspired attitude came through in Versace with bandana prints on tops and shirts. Total looks in denim featured aged denims dripped with color paint and covered with patches.

Details make all the difference
Lettering is widespread. John Richmond and MSGM decorated jackets and sweatshirts with slogans and text, while Calvin Klein trimmed its sweatshirts with the names of its bestselling fragrances Obsession, Eternity and Escape. Mixed motifs such as camouflage and huge tartans stood out with MSGM, while Iceberg’s knitwear pieces have geometrical motives. Etro likes to mix checks with paisley prints, creating sophisticated clashing mixes of rust, yellow or purple while celebrating Made in Italy tailors who had sewn the collection for the show. A very inspiring show in terms of styling and atmosphere was presented by Moncler. The show recreated the environment of an old library and did a new take on revisited a golfer’s wardrobe. Argyle motifs in various sizes and colors were mixed together in contrasting materials such as mink fur, knit and down padded materials.

Some VIPs left their mark during the shows. Members of the legendary KISS band were sitting in the first row at the John Varvatos show, while many of the models had KISS-inspired make-up on. Boy George – with a completely new and smart image – was the special guest at the party thrown by Dirk Bikkembergs, while Phlipp Plein hosted the hot US rapper Angel Haze.