Despite a scant turn out of UK buyers for the opening yesterday, there was plenty of excitement at the show thanks to a visit from the Italian Minister of economic development Pier Luigi Bersani.
Paparazzi and armed police jostled with the usual fashion crowd of sharp-suited Italians, Germans and Japanese, under the covered walkways of the show venue Fortezza Da Basso.
Fears of a slim UK turn out appeared to be justified yesterday morning, however morning flights carried over a larger British contingent with a healthy number of multiples and indies in attendance by the afternoon including representatives from John Lewis, Burton, TK Maxx, Limeys, Choice and Repertoire.
Some exhibitors suggested that tough trading had prompted some indies to return to the show to seek out something new to tempt shoppers in the midst of a consumer downturn.
Italian brand Zegna was missing from the show as expected, but other heavyweights such as Canali and Corneliani had their usual big-stand presence and high profile positioning.
On day one, grey remained the overriding trend, with slimmer fits and more contemporary styling still in favour at most of the big brands. There was also an increasing amount of technical fabrics on casualwear from the premium brands.
Despite the overcast sky and drizzle, a buzz permeated the first day of Pitti up until the very end as visitors left to go to the various after show events, likely to be followed by the inevitable late night UK rendez-vous at Gilli bar to catch up on the post show gossip.