Pitti Uomo 85

Pitti Uomo 85 – Wearable Looks & Outfits

Many comments from our last Pitti article asked for pictures of more subdued outfits.  So, we put together a series of exclusive pictures taken by Miguel Viera for the Gentleman’s Gazette, accompanied by the usual commentary.

Tobacco & Smoking

We already established that windowpane suits were popular, too many men still wear wristbands, and Pitti Peacocks continued to compete for attention, but more interestingly, cigars, pipes and everything regarding tobacco seems to be in again. We all know the how effortlessly cool Steve McQueen looked when he smoked, and it seems like old school tobacco (not vapor cigarettes) gives men the opportunity to set themselves apart.

The gentleman in the blue knit jacket or cardigan prefers a softer look. A soft felt hat is paired with open shirt cuffs and his shirt collar obviously does not have collar stays. Knitwear is flexible and stretchy and the tie seems like it is made of black or dark navy shantung silk. His spectacle frames seem to be made of horn, or maybe just acetate and with his pipe he follows the trend.

The other man is smoking with gusto and pulls off a peacoat in an unusual, basket-inspired weave. Note how the silver ring and watchband match the coat buttons.

Gianni Fontana likes his pipe as well and pairs it with a special velour hat. You probably won’t believe it, but these Austrian hats were sold in U.S. department stores in the fifties and sixties. Today, it is very difficult to find them new. While I like his color scheme, I think the overcoat plaid clashes with the sport coat. If you wear plaid, that’s fine, but choose a solid garment as a counterpart.

The double breasted jacket with 4×1 Kent Fasson is more popular now than it was 5 years ago, yet I have not really seen a look that would do Prince George the Duke of Kent justice. His look was relaxed and natural with the top button pair just slightly extending on either side whereas this button configuration looks cramped to me. Note how the buttoning point was elevated and the pockets remain in place, rendering a look that is somewhat out of balance.

The mustard yellow casentino coat is not special when you just consider the fabric or texture, but the color is certainly not something you see everyday.

Donegal tweed is the ideal fabric for sport coats because it has this unparalleled depth of color paired with a casual look. Here we see a version in green, with a large madder inspired paisley tie.

Next, we see a smoker in a black ulster style overcoat and red bow tie, but both are anything but generic. Take a close look at the edges of his overcoat and you will notice that the  edges are frayed for a distinct look. Also, the bow tie is quilted and seems to be made of leather or some kind of vinyl. Personally, I prefer bow ties in wool, silk or linen, but each to his own.

The following chap matches a flowery shirt with a vest, watch chain, bowler hat and trench coat. In combination with his pipe, it looks like he is trying too hard.

On the other hand, Ethan Desu wears a very subtle combination of a three piece suit with triple overcheck and wool tie. With his beard and pipe, he looks like smoking is his favorite thing in the world, even though he has not lit the pipe yet.

Wearable Outfits & Details

Not everybody can dress like a ‘Pitti-Peacock’, and in fact most men who are interested in clothes don’t. I suspect we only see it because it is a great way to draw attention in a way Beau Brummell would have certainly disapproved – he famously said “If John Bull turns around to look at you, you are not well dressed; but either too stiff, too tight, or too fashionable”.

I hope some of these pictures can help you to introduce a component of color or texture to your outfits to make them more unique without being over the top. I like the subtle shades of grey and white in his outfit, especially paired with the excellent fit of his shirt and jacket. He only wears one pattern and three solid colors. The shirt and pocket square are plain white but the pinpoint flannel gray tie connects the jacket with the white elements. Note the drape over his chest and the spalla camicia shirt style shoulder without and sort of padding. All together, these elements make the ensemble timelessly elegant. What do you think of his style?

In the first picture, you can see a seasoned gentleman, who proves that one doesn’t need flashy colors to create a noteworthy outfit. He pairs a subtle pattern gray wool flannel tie with a white shirt, pocket square and a herringbone jacket. The fit is very good and unique because of his unpadded spalla camicia shirt style shoulder and the drape over his chest.

Next up is Toni Rossi, who pairs muted colors such as gray, brown and blue to create a wearable outfit. To add a bit of depth, he combines two kinds of stripes,  a dotted tie and a textured cardigan or knit vest.

Green is very popular this winter, but I am not talking about a rich olive or grass green, but more of a washed-out green as seen on the gentleman with the green coat. A simple navy tie, blue shirt, and a dark checked sweater makes this outfit anything but generic without standing out from the crowd on first sight.

Mid gray is very versatile and when tailored in a diagonal twill fabric, you would be hard pressed to find a color that does not look good with it. Here we have a muted green sweater vest, burgundy striped silk tie and a white shirt with white linen pocket square.

Beautiful brown sport coat with grenadine tie and orange pocket square - one in real ancient madder silk would have been better, note the curved button down collar

Beautiful brown sport coat with grenadine tie and orange pocket square – one in real ancient madder silk would have been better, note the curved button down collar

Overcoats

Overcoats are great for cold winters. When it is  50°F / 10°C like in Florence in January, it is often too warm to wear an overcoat, yet at Pitti men pull out their capes and overcoats anyway. This season, the cape was popular and even the ones who did not wear a cape often wore the overcoat thrown over their shoulders.  If you want to do that on a regular basis, I suggest avoiding double breasted overcoats because the extra overlap makes it look odd when you don’t close it. On the other hand, if you wear them closed, double breasted coats are perfect because they keep you warmer due to the double layers of fabric and at the same time, they give you a more military inspired look.

What would you wear and what would you do differently?

Wristbands are still popular

Wristbands are still popular – see you later this summer

21 replies
  1. Dave
    Dave says:

    Hello,

    Have you just switched to a new formatting? If so, I hope it is short-lived.

    I’ve always enjoyed your articles, but this new approach with the black dot in the middle of photos, the fade-out photos, and the header flowing down the page is distracting, and, in my opinion, makes the articles harder to read and thus, much less enjoyable.

    Just my 2 cents,,,

    From a fellow Minnesotan,
    Sincerely,
    Dave

    Reply
    • Sven Raphael Schneider
      Sven Raphael Schneider says:

      Thanks for your input Dave. We have quite a few mobile readers and needed to update it so people ons smartphones and tablets have a better reading experience.
      That being said, we are not done yet, and we are constantly improving the look. Also we will have a survey so we can see what many users like and dislike.

      Reply
      • Vincent M.
        Vincent M. says:

        I think the new layout is nice though it takes definitely time to get used to. But i would love if you brought back the herringbone background. Or some other fabric maybe. The contrast is quite high, especially in the night. Keep up with the awesome articles :)
        Best regards,
        Vincent

        Reply
  2. Brett Silver
    Brett Silver says:

    I will, respectfully, disagree with the previous comment. Once I became used to the change, I’ve found the articles much more mobile friendly.
    But to the point, this is yet another wonderful piece on such a valuable resource. Thank you for the information, advice, inspiration, and the hard work put in to the site.
    I am also quite pleased to see the return of the pipe! As someone who has enjoyed them for a long time, I am glad others are discovering the pleasure. Perhaps now some of the cigar shops and tobacconist will diversify into the wonderful world of the loose leaf. Its a more indulgent treat than a cigar and much more dignified than cigarettes.
    I don’t always smoke. But when I do, its from a meerschaum.
    Keep up the great work!

    Reply
      • Wolf Baginski
        Wolf Baginski says:

        Smoking is one of those things which turns into a political issue. In many places it is falling out of favour. My experience inclines me to be negative on the matter.

        The photographs today, and the text, were tolerable. Please, tread carefully. I would be discomfited were the tragic history of tobacco to be greatly extended by something as essentially trivial as fashion.

        Reply
  3. PrussianPedestrian
    PrussianPedestrian says:

    Dear Mr. Schneider,

    I would kindly ask you to consider another bit specifically aiming at the “seasoned gentleman” or classic styles sported at the event. Last years coverage on the matter undoubtedly contained some of the most noteworthy men’s style choices brilliantly executed. It was one of my all time favourites on your blog.

    Sincerely,

    a fellow German being very fond of you work

    Reply
  4. Jon Wall
    Jon Wall says:

    An enjoyable article which brought back memories of many wonderful trips to Pitti. As a ex wool textile man I was particularly interested in the soft unpressed finish on almost all the fabrics in the highlighted garments which give these rediscovered gems such a modern twist.

    Reply
  5. Josef K.
    Josef K. says:

    Very useful info, thanks, but it is presented in such a disorganized way (messy layout, illogical link structure, nonexistent connections between pictures and text, picture sizes all over the place, etc.) that it is very nearly unreadable. An example: the text refers to a velours hat that is nowhere to be seen until one clicks on one of the uselessly cropped “thumbnails”. Maybe you assumed everybody knows who Gianni Fontana is? You need a competent web designer.

    Reply
    • Sven Raphael Schneider
      Sven Raphael Schneider says:

      Josef,

      Thanks for your feedback. We are using a new theme that allows us to quickly change galleries, images etc. without having to rely on a full time web designer. We are experimenting with various formats and so we appreciate your feedback.
      The problem we had here was that we had 30 images and if we display all of them in full size in one post, there may be issues if 200 people read it at the same time…
      How would you like to see pictures so they all utilize lazy loading?
      What else is messy in your opinion? Why is the link structure illogical? Please be more specific so we can improve, thank you.

      Reply
  6. Hal
    Hal says:

    Certainly a selection of clothes that are more likely to appeal to most people. Simon Crompton (I think) in the brown sports jacket with button down shirt is a good smart casual look.

    Reply
  7. Kai
    Kai says:

    Tobacco is “cool?” Really? Kind of ironic that Steve McQueen died of lung disease. I can’t imagine subjecting my clothing (or people around me) to the stench of smoking. Seems like the modern gentlemen could figure out some other way to “set themselves apart.”

    Reply
  8. JC 95
    JC 95 says:

    Yes, the gentleman in brown tweed coat is indeed Simon Crompton.
    In my humble opinion, shirt shoulders, drape cut & soft, unstructed clothing may be comfortable to wear. But again on most of us, it looks sloppy, borrowed and when combined with lightweights, it looks shapeless and poorly tailored. Every man needs some form of structure, for shape, elegance and yes of course, to balance his physical flaws.This is what makes us look handsome.

    Reply
  9. Adam Verhoeven-Mrosek
    Adam Verhoeven-Mrosek says:

    Some of the Gentleman are wearing real nice and wearable things. But some of them look like clowns. It´s definitly not smart, to wearing things unreflected…

    Reply

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