Some interesting Pitti picks
It was nice to see Pitti back in some kind of working order recently, when I attended for the first time in two years.
Attendance was still down, with many brands absent and indeed an entire building empty. That was a little shocking to see - just a barrier where the entrance used to be.
And there was a distinct lack of Japanese and Koreans. Apparently there are still some restrictions on them travelling - or at least getting back once they leave.
But still, it was nice. I really miss the concentration of creativity that happens at a menswear show. Everyone out in their best duds, reflecting their combination of a particular style subculture, the trends within it, and then their personality within that. Often I find the streetwear guys just as inspiring as the sartorialists.
I also miss the cataloguing of the looks that used to happen in the major magazines. They were so useful. You’d trawl through 93 images but always find 10 or 15 that were worth saving.
Nowadays this mostly happens on Instagram, sometimes only in stories, and it’s often drowned out by images of what everyone had for dinner. WWD has a set, but it’s very fashion.
So here are a few I liked at Pitti this year. It’s a deliberate mix of formal and casual, and I really wish I didn’t have to remind everyone, but it still feels necessary - this isn’t about copying looks wholesale. It’s about little touches of inspiration, whether a colour combination, a cut, or even just an attitude.
Women can get away with more than men when it comes to style (it’s all about associations), but still this is a great combination. Textured grey, white, tan, brown, beige. Of all those, I think it’s the brown/grey suit cloth that brings it all together.
I wouldn’t wear the hat and I’d go for loafers rather than monk straps, but that’s the point: a different style on a different person, but something that can inspire me none the less.
There’s something contrary in me that always wants to pick the unusual choice. Not the guy in the nice suit and nice shirt. But the guy in a T-shirt and khakis that has easily missed ideas for a nice suit and nice shirt.
Here I like the colour combination of white, washed-out green and washed-out grey (in the shirt). Goes well with his hair colour too.
Maybe the theme for me this year was ‘tonal’. I’d never wear this outfit, but I was attracted by the combination of black, grey, white and a petrol blue.
Looking at those that wear more casual clothing is also often an interesting exercise in proportion. Big T-shirt, but tucked in; big trousers, but cut short. It’s often length that makes something sloppy, rather than size.
OK, here’s a nice bit of tailoring. Hi Andreas! An impressive amount of tonality going on here, with three shades of brown and a yellow (cream?) polo shirt.
I’m not sure I could pull off quite that level of brown tonal. Maybe it helps that Andreas’s tan and hair almost seem part of the combination. Anyway, one I’ll put into the ‘try and see’ folder.
This is probably more what I’d wear. Tan cotton suit, T-shirt, brown sunglasses adding something extra.
I didn’t expect the burgundy-coloured Vans though. They really added something to the outfit, in the absence of any other colour or accessory. Helps a lot if they’re beat-up.
Women again. My God they do the tonal thing well. Not because it comes more naturally somehow, but because we often don’t appreciate how much they think, have to think, and copy images even more wholesale. That’s based on a few conversations, but a subject for another day.
Here it’s just beautiful white, beige, tan and black. I will definitely be copying that. And no, guys, it doesn’t matter if your bag doesn’t match your shoes.
Wearing colours that are close to each other, but not quite the same, is something men often feel is a bad idea. It can certainly be risky, and not as smart, but it’s worth playing with in more casual clothing.
I love this simple navy on navy. It looks like a working outfit, ready for a practical day in the heat, at a trade fair. But with an elegance nonetheless.
There’s something similar here with Kevis, but rather more exaggerated proportions and, as a result, what feels more like a fashion look.
High, wide trousers; deeply unbuttoned shirt; big hat and glasses. It’s these things that make it the kind of outfit many PS readers won’t like - but it’s about proportions, not the fact there’s a big ship on the front of the cap.
I deliberately haven’t included most of the big hitters of menswear here - Ethan and Kenji, Anglo guys, Armoury guys etc. You’ll have seen most of those around anyway. And I haven’t included this picture for Tommaso either (on the left).
Rather, I liked Eugenio’s orange slippers. Only at a pool party, and only with everything else very restrained, but I love it. Better than an animal print or a big monogram for me, personally.
Here’s a lovely suit and tie. One of the few times I’ve found I like a ‘fun’ tie as well. Not too fun, not ironic, but deliberately more playful than a small geometric pattern.
Nice details too, like the bracelet, the sunglasses in the pocket. Still seems like a better way to go than a pocket square or a tie pin to me, most of the time.
To be honest, I’m not sure why I like this one so much. Maybe it just seemed very authentic - his way of wearing a suit.
I couldn’t imagine the same look with a collared shirt, or with a polo tucked in. The full cut of the trousers, and the jacket permanently unbuttoned, are also part of the same attitude. The attitude and the personality make me very happy.
I know, I know. The proportions are a bit silly: those jeans are so low the jacket barely overlaps them. But the purple, the purple under the navy is great. As is pale denim and the black loafer.
I’d take that and try a navy shawl-collar cardigan over a purple polo, with similarly pale jeans (slimmer leg, higher rise) and black loafers. That could look great.
The thing I love most about simple colour combinations is that it gives you more room to experiment with other things (if you want to).
This is basically just black and olive drab. But it makes it easier to wear a leather sandal, carry a little drawstring bag, add some jewellery.
Back to tailoring, with a combination I have actually worn and will again. Maybe that’s why I include less of these, because I feel I already know them, and have shown them on PS too.
Anyway, it’s beige/oatmeal, white and tobacco. I’ve done that with my Brioni jacket and my canvas Caliendo, the choice depending on how casual I want to be. And usually with the trousers from my Dege suit.
Last but by no means least, a guy doing some western workwear very simply and nicely. It’s the much-more-wearable alternative to what you normally see in Brycelands imagery.
Pale blue work shirt, khaki khakis, and a western hat in the actually-rather-tonal colour of silverbelly. If you’re going to try a western hat in the sun, this is the way to start.