Menswear trade show Pitti Uomo will ramp up its autumn 12 edition in January with new spaces, exclusive designer launches and developments in its online platform in a bid to retain top brands and buyers amid a tough economic climate.
Pitti, which will take place on January 10 to 13 in Florence, will unveil an area called Make dedicated to one-off pieces, featuring designers including Chapal, Zonkey Boot and Marc Bernstein.
“People are looking for identity and uniqueness,” said Pitti Immagine chief executive Raffaello Napoleone. “When the market is not brilliant, good trade shows do better and I’m expecting to have a very good Pitti.”
The New Beats section will host 20 Japanese brands and designers chosen by Tokyo Fashion Week, including Facetasm, Mastermind Japan and Soe, while McQ and Jimmy Choo’s men’s collections will make their trade show debut at Pitti.
“Together with the brands already exhibiting, we will have close to 50 Japanese brands. Japan is extremely strong in menswear at the moment,” said Napoleone.
Autumn 12’s special guest will be Valentino, which will show its menswear collection ahead of the men’s international fashion weeks.
Napoleone added that virtual fair e-Pitti, which launched last season, will be developed further for the January edition to include a “temporary showroom”, where brands can present their collections and receive orders from buyers throughout January. Napoleone said Pitti will handle the sales for a 15% commission charge.
“Tradeshow organisers cannot ignore digital,” he said. “But e-Pitti won’t damage the physical show, it will complement it. I don’t think you can buy without going to a show.” Only registered Pitti buyers can access e-Pitti.