While there were no new trend directions, plenty of commercial options gave menswear buyers reason to be confident at the 88th edition of the Florence fair
Veteran buyers are wary of what they see at Pitti Immagine Uomo. What looks attractive and wearable under the bright Tuscan sun might not look so sellable on a wet summer’s afternoon in the UK and Ireland. Yet there were several strong looks that would appeal to any retailer who wants to put money in the till next spring.
The ‘next big thing’ was noticeable by its absence. The important differences were in details, with lots of work having gone into cloths, constructions, patterns and colours (especially the ubiquitous blues). For the canny menswear retailer, Pitti provided plenty of value-added touches to appeal to discerning customers.
Summer jackets and trousers continue to be more prominent than suits. There are two routes to follow: traditional tailored sports jackets dressed down with casual pants; or, for a super-relaxed approach, jackets are unlined or made from stretch jersey. Either approach provides plenty of add-on sales via pocket squares and scarves.
Hasn’t the consumer seen enough of blue for the past few seasons? Too bad, it’s back again in a vast spectrum of shades, in solids or patterns. Buy carefully to avoid overkill.
Winter outerwear is stripped to its lightest basics, but the high-performance fabrics and construction are ready to repel summer showers.
Safari jackets, combat jackets, fishing gilets, cargo shorts… there is an extraordinary array of utility-inspired garments in the season’s neutral palette.
Plains that aren’t plain abound across wovens and knits. Subtle and not-so-subtle weave and knit interest on stones, khakis and greens provide an alternative to punchy colours and inky darks.
PATTERNS AT PLAY
Pitti showed more stripes than a deckchair manufacturers’ convention, but checks, playful mini-prints and micro-weaves (self-coloured rather than contrasting) are other alternatives. Pattern mix is important for those consumers who can carry it off.
The hybrid trend continues and will presumably be picked up by even more shoppers. Sneakers on a deck shoe sole are a comfortable and versatile adjunct to both the casual tech and the tailored jacket trends.