Twice a year, menswearists descend upon beautiful Florence for Pitti Uomo, turning this beautiful riverside Renaissance town into a peacock fest. At least that’s better than a wren fair (who threw that?!?). Here’s what I found most memorable from last winter’s Pitti Uomo 87, from the head-turning to the head-scratching.
Sastreria 91’s Plumage
Everyone at the fair was tittering about the creative use of bird feathers at Sastreria 91, a tailoring shop run by Paul and Caterina, a lovely Spanish couple. Their story is that this project began when clients came in with trophy game birds whose feathers they wanted made into bowties. I told them we have a similar tradition, wherein if one Styleforum member slays another, he creates a victory cape out of the defeated’s pocket squares. Their worried expressions made me think they didn’t get the joke.
Peacock Rating: Sastreria 91 brings our Pitti ‘cock jokes to literal avian fruition. Where do we go from here? 8/10 ‘Cocks
Isaia’s House of Pleasure
I don’t know if you guys have heard, but Neapolitan tailoring is kind of in right now. As a result, every Neapolitan brand emphasizes their connection to Naples every chance they get - cloth merchant Caccioppoli has Vesuvius as their logo; the La Vera Sartoria Napoletana brand name hits you over the head with literalism; Kiton set up a display of Neapolitan pastries at their Pitti stand.
Isaia has been doing this for a while - a couple of years ago they based a collection around San Gennaro, the patron saint of Naples. In January, they decided to feature the most popular tourist attraction at Pompeii: the whore house. Since many visitors to Pompeii’s brothel either didn’t know Latin or could not read in any language, the menu was pictographic. Each fresco on the wall represented a sex act on offer. These same images were displayed on the walls of Isaia’s stand. I did not try to order anything.
Hidden in their private meeting room was a fresco depicting Priapus, the Greek fertility god, weighing his penis. I guess this was before rulers were invented.
Peacock Rating: Only encourages dudes who see the price of an Isaia jacket and ask, “does it come with a handjob?” One Upright Crowing ‘Cock out of 10
It was only a matter of time before some Japanese guys showed up at Pitti Uomo to sell scented underwear. (No, not that, you sick fuck.) Anyway, they have a whole line of nightwear - from normal boxers to those little floppy dunce caps that I’ve only seen in fable illustrations - and bottles of scent for you to spray on your undergarment of choice. I wish I had gathered the fortitude to take some pictures of fair attendees diving nose-first into the crotch of a pair of briefs, but I am weak.
Peacock Rating: Weird, but not weird enough. 4/10 ‘Cocks
What in the…
Then there are the roving bands of Trick-or-Treaters who are surely selling something, but pass by too quickly for you to figure out what. I’m not even sure if Pitti sanctions these guys, so they could be moving so fast because they’re running from the Pitti mall cops. Anyway, here are some goths wearing Pinocchio in Eyes Wide Shut masks:
I did manage to talk to this guy long enough for him to tell me that they were selling the shoes.
Of course Darth Vader made an appearance, with one lonely Storm Trooper:
I guess Vader’s career is kind of in the dumps if he has to pick up gigs at random trade shows.
Peacock Rating: Solicitors are never welcome. DQ’ed due to ‘Cock Blocking.
Who knows what plans vendors are hatching for this summer’s Pitti 88. But if they can top this flock, they will really have something to crow about.