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Buyers and brands in high spirits at Pitti

Menswear buyers and brands were upbeat about autumn 12’s collections and trading at menswear tradeshow Pitti Uomo this week, with technical outerwear and contrasting textures key to next season.

Tweed jackets with jersey paneling, leather piping, water resistant hemp and brushed, washed and oiled fabrications all featured to keep the heritage trend alive for yet another season. Quilted jackets and traditional autumnal hues of moss green and burgundy – with flashes of orange – also stood out at the Florentine show.

Judy Cimdins, buying director at Cocosa, said: “It’s been a great show so far. Heritage is still a strong trend, with great brands like Barbour and Hackett. (Autumn 12) is all about the textures, the tweeds, the plaids, and there’s been a lift in formalwear, too. There’s a huge opportunity for us in menswear, but some brands are still reticent about going online.”

Steve Gaunt, owner of menswear indie Stone Menswear in west Yorkshire, said: “We’ve picked up some new brands and outerwear and knitwear are standing out, particularly the technical pieces. We saw a great waterproof, reversible knit. There’s been a slight increase in prices, but it’s not a concern. Pitti is a really great show and it’s important to come here – to network, see brands’ full collections and people take you more seriously if you make the effort to come. Business is good and we’re up 20% on last year.”

Bernd Hake, UK managing director for Hugo Boss, said: “We’re expecting it to be very busy today (Wednesday), but we’ve already seen Harrods and House of Fraser. They’ve loved our outerwear and there’s a move back towards suiting. Corduroy is also coming back.”

Hugo Boss, which shows its Boss Selection line at Pitti, will launch a Made to Measure service in the UK from April or May in two of its London stores, with plans to roll out the service.


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