Even for this June, Pitti Uomo, the largest trade fair in the world dedicated to menswear, has brought a burst of innovations in Florence along with designers, buyers, business men, journalists and fashion industry insiders pouring into the city to discover the trends of the next summer. According to the official attendance figures, the foreign buyers increased by 4.5% compared to the June edition of 2012. This has been a successful edition despite the various negative factors affecting the fashion industry, but leaving aside the numbers, for the first time I prefer to start my serial posts on the Florentine fashion week talking about the more frivolous part of Pitti, the night events and parties.
Impossible for me not to start with the so rumored LuisaViaRoma Firenze4Ever bloggers evening party of June 17th, set in the beautiful Boboli Gardens. The atmosphere was special and full of contrasts: the great table running along the edges of the “fountain of the Ocean” was illuminated by silver candelabra and decorated with garlands of flowers, transporting guests in a dreamlike dimension; while over the hedges trees, it seemed to be at an Italian version of Coachella festival, with the stage, several open bars and the VIP bloggers trotting on high heels. The real flaw of the party has been the absence of light, but maybe it was also a fortune obscuring the horrors caused by the “glam grunge” dress code.
|Pitti 84 – Firenze 4ever party and my punk chic outfit, obviously not glam grunge|
Pitti Uomo officially opened on June 18th and the evening events began with the SPACE store cocktail party in Via Tornabuoni. A huge summer kiosk with wooden chaise-longues and tropical plants occupied the street while the Kay Rush djset entertained the fashion maniacs who drank and ate the typical Tuscan cold cuts of Macelleria Falorni cut with a vintage hand-cranked meat slicer. Who said that fashion people do not eat?
|Pitti 84 – SPACE cocktail party|
Another shop, another party: a forest of palm trees and a beach kiosk in via Sassetti (opposite the Odeon cinema) indicated the opening of the new Gerard store. Gerard is a Florentine brand specialized in casual wear that has finally found its fixed place after the closure of many shops that filled the center. Inside the store there were collections in full summer mood with floral prints all over, while outside, the crowd was intent on sipping beer… ça va sans dire!
|Pitti 84 – Gerard shop window|
In Piazza Strozzi there was an installation by Mario Luca Giusti, who created a geometric and colorful Italian garden with its glass jugs, paying homage to the gardening tradition of Florence.
|Pitti 84 – Mario Luca Giusti|
|Pitti 84 – Mario Luca Giusti|
June 19th has been the most exhausting but funny night. My fashion marathon began at the Alcatraz space of the Leopolda Station with the MSGM SS 2014 presentation. Massimo Giorgetti (creative director of MSGM) is a new Italian fashion designer who gained an incredible success in a few seasons, especially among stylists and fashion editors, completely subjugated by his fresh and irreverent style made of printed garments. (Soon the full review)
|Pitti 84 – MSGM|
|Pitti 84 – MSGM|
In Piazza Strozzi, Emporio Armani boutique hosted an intimate cocktail with DJ set, during which you could appreciate the new collection, relaxing in a quiet, almost ethereal atmosphere, outside of the typical Pitti chaos.
To get to the Aquazzura shoes presentation at Palazzo Corsini, I passed through Piazza Santa Trinita, where Salvatore Ferragamo in collaboration with Lucca Comix, organized the Comics Jam, a contest for young cartoonists. The challenge was to create a cartoon of 8 pages in 8 hours, inspired to the world of shoes as the exhibition “The prodigious shoemaker”, opened in April at the Museo Salvatore Ferragamo. Pencils, pantone, tempera, ipad, computer, graphic tables and a crowd of young talents, under the supervision of experts cartoonists, have transformed the most fashionable street of Florence in a real studio.
|Pitti 84 – Salvatore Ferragamo – Comics Jam|
The Aquazzura presentation was one of the main events of the Pitti calendar and the young Colombian shoe designer Edgardo Osorio deserves a post completely dedicated to him. For the moment, suffice it to say that the succession of frescoed rooms of Palazzo Corsini enlived by the performance of dancers with Aquazzura heels and the sunset drink on the terrace overlooking the Arno river helped to create a dreaming atmosphere. Among the VIP guests, a heavenly vision: Olivia Palermo. She was so nice with us bloggers, I really re-evaluated her as a person.
The dream lasted until Harry’s Bar, iconic international nightlife place in Florence, where the men’s tailoring brand Angelo Galasso, in collaboration with Italian Vogue magazine, presented “Tradition in Evolution” a photo gallery of the SS14 Galasso collection, in a chaotic party as the ones at Miss Golightly’s.
The evening continued with younger and commercial brands.
Puma and Rolling Stone Italia magazine presented in the magnificent Palazzo Pandolfini a preview of the SS2014 shoes collection with the “Spitti JAM: Rap Meets Fashion” event. Master The Italian rapper MARRACASH was the master of ceremony and his live performance rocked the air making a sharp contrast with the romantic statues of the garden.
|Pitti 84 – SPITTI JAM|
Finally, the experiential presentation of Fracomina SS2014 collection, the Neapolitan womenswear brand, which lately is drastically changing its very commercial image of the early times(2003) aiming to a more sophisticated one. Since last year they decided to parade in the city where was born the Italian fashion, and this year occupied the Budini-Gattai Palace with an emotional tour through the rooms of the ground floor. Every room opened a new world through colors, lights, sounds, tastes and smells as the moods of the collection, and the imaginary route continued at dinner with a succession of contrasting flavors, a kind of epiphany for the senses. I think this has been one of the most unexpected event and I wish the brand to successfully continue the new design style, unfortunately still unknown to the public, accustomed to the old image.
June 20th evening began with the SS2014 Emiliano Rinaldi fashion show on the steps of the Garden of Villa Vittoria during sunset. A collection seemed inspired to the Far East travels of an English lord of the past: there were many references to the colonial style also in the set with big umbrellas, stone sculptures and waiters who continued to serve cocktails and canapés in repetition during the show, as in a costume film.
|Pitti 84 – Emiliano Rinaldi SS14 finale|
Meanwhile, in the city center are continuing in-shop cocktails including the opening of the Rimowa luxury suitcases boutique; and the Mandarina Duck FW collection presentation. In the latter event, I had the fortuitous occasion to meet Matteo Molinari, one of my favorite young talents who took part to the last edition of Who is on next? Uomo 2013. The evening concluded between drinks and laughs with my (mis)adventures companions Camilla
at Osteria Santo Spirito in Piazza Santo Spirito, where we celebrated the official closing of our Florentine fashion week with a nice steak … and after all, it’s not so hard to admit that 2/3 days of Pitti Uomo are better than 100 of Milan Fashion Week!
Alessandro Masetti – The Fashion Commentator
Special thanks to Camilla for some of the photos