Tuesday, June 23, 2015


Visitors at Pitti Immagine Uomo in Florence, Italy.
Pitti Immagine Uomo, the world’s leading trade fair for men’s fashion, has again shown that it is the destination of choice for new designers in Europe and for buyers from around the globe.

The 88th edition, which took place June 16 to 19 in Florence, Italy (see previous article), attracted more than 30,000 visitors, two-thirds of whom were buyers, according to the organizers.

Florence Mayor Dario Nardella (left)
 and designer Nino Cerruti.
“Pitti brings a light to the fashion companies, big and small, in Florence, and it celebrates the history of Italian artisanship,” Florence’s mayor, Dario Nardella, told Tasshon in an interview at the fair’s opening ceremony.

“We’re proud to see it grow and bring visitors from around the world to our city,” he added.

The number of buyers rose by 5 percent from last year, as Pitti expanded its scope to include new designers and brands from various countries and also launched a number of special events.

European visitors came mostly from Germany, France, the Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland, while the fair also noted growth from Japan, Turkey, India, and Taiwan, among other countries, the organizers said.

Exhibition of vintage Cerrutti designs.
The sense of excitement was palpable at the main venue - the Fortezza da Basso - and at other locations around the historic city, as designers presented runway shows and iconic brands held a range of meet-ups to showcase their spring-summer 2016 collections.

The fair’s highlights also included an exhibition devoted to the work of 84-year-old Nino Cerruti, one of the leading figures in Italian men’s fashion for almost five decades, who attended the event, graciously greeting fans. It ended with a bold and playful collection by Moschino, Pitti’s Menswear Guest Designer, after a highly praised runway show by four African brands.

For the latter, Pitti joined up with the Ethical Fashion Initiative (EFI) to focus on Africa as part of the fair’s Guest Nation project. The EFI is a flagship programme of the International Trade Centre, a joint agency of the United Nations and the World Trade Organization.

Dent de Man SS 2016.
© Pitti Immagine and G. Giannoni
“It’s another view of Africa. This presents the Africa of design and creativity, the Africa with passion, enthusiasm and hope for the future,” said EFI founder and director Simone Cipriani, who expressed pleasure at the success of “Constellation Africa”, as the show was titled.

The brands - Dent de Man, MaXhosa by Laduma, Orange Culture and Projecto Mental - represented Nigeria, South Africa, Angola and the Ivory Coast. The designers drew glowing reviews for their inventiveness and vision, with clothing ranging from knitwear to striking off-beat ensembles.

Ivory Coast-born, Britain-based stylist Alexis Temomanin of Dent de Man particularly impressed spectators with his daring use of Java prints, incorporating traditional Ivorian elements, such as masks. But all the designers brought something fresh to Pitti Uomo.

Vincenzo Ciancio
At the main venue, among the more typical trade fair displays, other designers also stood out - such as Vincenzo Ciancio. He's one of the stylists behind the trendy Italian Hamaki Ho brand. Cianco says that the company’s youthful yet refined style is inspired from the street and from skaters.

The brand used basic colours of grey, white, blue and black, for a kind of “summer-yacht” look, and paired the clothing with hip sneakers, caps and other accessories for their spring-summer collection.

Notable at the fair as well was the parade of male fashionistas, strutting like the proverbial peacock throughout the four-day event. Where did the idea come from that men don’t like to dress up? - Text and photos by Tasshon, unless indicated.

MaXhosa by Laduma SS16. © Pitti Immagine and G. Giannoni