I have made a few attempts to understand the dark other side of Styleforum, Streetwear and Denim. All have been unsuccessful. I remember one foray into the WAYWT thread that started with me running face-first into a picture of a guy wearing a shirt made out of wood. Ten minutes later I retreated to Classic Menswear. But when @Synthese volunteered to be my Virgil on a voyage to his hand-selected curated capsule collection of Florentine SW&D stores, I gathered the courage for another expedition. After finishing our fair duties for the day, Jasper led me our first stop, Luisa Via Roma. From the outside, it seemed more like a nightclub than a clothing store. Some sort of paparazzi crowd had gathered outside, taking pictures and bobbing to the bloopty-bloops coming from the store's speakers and echoing into the early evening air. We pushed our way through the crowd and into the fluorescent interior. As we entered I looked up just in time to read the beginning of the inscription over the door: "Lasciate ogni speranza...." The men's clothes are upstairs, of course. Wouldn't want to make the ladies climb the stairs in their heels, I suppose. The shoppers seemed to be divided into performers, like the guy in makeup, tights, and a cape, and spectators, like me. We hit the shoe section first. The typical conversation went like this - (I pick up some bedazzled sneaker curiously) Me: People wear these things? Jasper: I mean...those aren't really my style. (Turn over sticker, notice $1k+ price tag, shrug) I did notice some hi-tops that had excess circumference at the opening, which the laces were meant to gather together to give it a bunched look, sort of like the waterfall effect produced by a larger sleeve fit into a smaller armhole on a Neapolitan jacket. The suits they had combined trendy details like skinny lapels, piped lapels, or a quintet of metal sleeve buttons with industrial construction. I did see an Armani suit that would get a lot of criticism on this side of board for the reasons that it is made by Armani, uses a shiny synthetic-blend fabric, and doesn't even claim to be #handmade. Despite all these damning faults, the suit was nicely designed and the construction was clean and light. But most of the non-suit clothing left me 1) wondering what kind of non-ridiculous person would be interested in wearing these things, and 2) not feeling inspired enough to embrace the ridiculousness. Some of the pieces seemed to require a how-to manual just to figure out how to put them on in such a way that they wouldn't fall off. Jasper did his best to stick up for some of the designers and explain to me the ethos behind them, but he seemed to be running out of enthusiasm, and I could barely hear him over the store music anyway. On the way out we stopped at a rack full of Saint Laurent Paris, Zara's Hedi Slimane's takeover of YSL. The designs were tired and the leather felt like plastic. I left the store feeling like I had just walked through an alien museum: there was clearly some high-level design, but without context some of it felt flat and tacky. I was like a child who wanders into the middle of a movie and wants to know...why does this t-shirt cost $450? I don't know if as an outsider I was able to use a fresh eye to cut through the groupthinking, or if I just didn't know enough to understand each designer's intent, or if there's any difference.