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The Pittilogues: Pitti Uomo 87, Day 3

Synthese

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The Pittilogues: Pitti Uomo 87, Day 3
HURRY UP PLEASE IT'S TIME
Day 3 is another slow day. It’s mobbed - Pitti, as we may have mentioned, is packed this year - and no matter what I do I seem to feel terrible. I meet Fok in the morning, after a pitiful attempt at eating breakfast, and we walk (well, scoot) our way to the Fortezza. I am in the lead, which means that we get lost. Only slightly lost, really. But we do have to rely on Fok’s phone to get us the last quarter mile. Fok’s talked about the “Pitti look” that he hates. Here’s the Pitti look that I hate: really tight (usually DB) jacket, peg-legged, drop crotch trousers or (yikes) denim, and derbies. I loathe it. But make no mistake, I am not as fly as these dudes. In fact, I am probably not fly at all. I am wearing the same shirt and sweater as yesterday. A gym sweater, to be more accurate. It’s warmer today, about 60, but these people are ******* nuts so, of course, the heat is on. Sunny, crowded, sweaty - yeah, it’s just a mess of a day. Jen and Fok seem to be cruising right along, but I’ve reached the usual Day 3 point at which I just feel tired and absolutely sick of fashion. I know I’m starting to sound like a broken record, but here’s the thing: I usually feel like a moron - if I were wearing what these people are wearing, I don't think I'd be able to function. It's an interesting thing to think about. I talk a lot about the importance of feeling comfortable, but it takes an effort - Bourdieu-like, perhaps - of social echolocation to figure out where on the continuum that comfort lies. I’ve decided, after looking in a mirror, that I can never wear black and white again. How come nobody told me I look like a *******? I spend most of the day observing people, rather than vendors - most of them are the same, year after year, which means that it’s a bit difficult to find something to be excited about if you’re not actively buying for a store. Casentino is everywhere this year - they are really pumping the stuff out, using it everywhere (I even saw one mixed-material double rider). I take a picture of an old dude with a beard, lighting a cigar. He keeps the flame going for me while I take the picture. Also notable is the most Styleforum-approved brand of all time: Spectator. It’s all militaria - a bit like Wings + Horns, except not Canadian. Gats, shearlings, cowichans, “bulletproof” down vests, military chinos - it’s like a greatest-hits list from Styleforum circa 2010. Fok rails against it at length - seriously, it is probably the most animated I’ve ever seen him - and then we both admit we’d probably wear all of it. I might be imagining things, but there also seem to be more sneaker and hat companies this season, and fewer travel accessory brands. La Portegna is here, of course, and it is always a pleasure to watch Leticia roll her eyes at Jose, but otherwise we seem to be doing sneakers this year. I can’t find any that I want to wear - except for in the Diemme both maybe, which I completely forget to photograph. Sorry guys. One brand that IS interesting is “Eastlogue” - both @GDl and I agree on this. It’s a bit Cabourn-like, but…you could actually afford it. British materials (yes, ventile), Korean construction; it seems like a solid buy. I try to cruise past the other StyFo requests, and am met largely with disappointment. I do manage to investigate “Barleycorn,” and learn that they make some of the ugliest shoes I’ve ever seen. The weirdest moment of the entire day is when I spot what must be my female Asian doppleganger. Camera, bag, shearling. Man, I wish I had my shearling this year. Mistake. And then, suddenly, the day is over, and Gracia and I are on our way to PNP Firenze. * We go to the men’s side first, where Marco says hello to us, and points us to the new M.A.+ collection. I never, ever feel like trying things on, though, so we browse, and then leave. We head around the corner to the women’s side, which is, I gotta say, one of the most unfriendly stores I’ve ever been in. It’s nothing like the men’s shop, which is quiet, intimate, and very welcoming. By contrast, the SA’s on the women’s side follow you around as though you’re a criminal, they look down their noses at you, refuse to speak to you, and generally act as though your presence is some sort of world-ending blight. I’m not into shops like this, although Gracia tells me it’s “normal.” She tries on some really, really beautiful clothing - Uma Wang in particular is absolutely stunning in person - and we leave when we learn they don’t carry the thigh-high Guidi’s she’s coveting in her size. Yeah - she’s pretty metal.
400
It’s a shame that it’s such an uncomfortable place to be in, because the clothing is really beautiful - and, of course, I wasn’t allowed to take pictures to show you what I mean, but maybe just trust me on this one. We’ll go back to the men’s shop with David tomorrow, which I’m sure will be entertaining. * All that remains is dinner - and, thankfully, it’s the best of the trip. Fok, Jen, Gracia and I eat at a nearby trattoria, and are seated next to a man who is obviously the owner of the establishment - and who has a similar demeanor to the PNP women’s employees. The food is very good, however: I start with a tartare - the weak point of the meal, really - and Jen and I move on to pappardelle with boar ragù. It’s delicious, really delicious; perfect ribbons of pasta coated in a simple red sauce, meaty and salty and truly satisfying. I opt for osso buco next, as I’ve gone the whole trip without it, and am not disappointed. What can I say about good osso buco that hasn’t been said? After stuffing yourself with tartare and pasta, it takes something very good to make you want to continue to stuff yourself. I cannot believe how much I’ve eaten on this trip. Finally, we have the richest, deepest chocolate ganache I’ve ever tasted - a perfect end to the meal. I break the rules (I guess) and order a limoncello, but I just really like limoncello. And after that, we say our farewells - I have been aiming for early nights, but as every dinner lasts until 23:30, it’s a bit of a lost cause. Regardless, tomorrow is the last day of Pitti, the day of emptiness, and we shall see what we shall see.
 
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nahneun

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@Synthese moar fit pics of m.a+ plox
 

nahneun

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the day you stop being an uncle nephew and become a nephew uncle.

brb buying ***** tanks and ***** drop crotch sweats
 
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LA Guy

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Day 3: I get mad at having to be at Pitti, and eat Osso Buco with The Rosenrot

It’s Jen’s day off, and she leaves early to go see some paintings by some monk at San Marco. Later, she tells me that a lot of the paintings show things that would be considered fairly heretical by the Catholic Church, like depictions of Mary Magdalene and Jesus in which the Magdalene and Jesus are positioned somewhat like lovers. I guess that it’s a good thing he painted them for himself, and not on commission. Probably spared himself an irate patron, at least. I don’t go. I am not a fan of museums, with all the ushers hushing you. It feels like a library where you have to walk a lot, another activity I am not fond of. Also, I’ve been to Italy a lot more times than Jen, and I also have only a rudimentary education in classical art, which means that my appreciation boils down to “Oh, look, it’s another Madonna and Child. Looks like early Renaissance”. And unless you know the subject, they all look about the same. Also, I have work to do. Stupidly, I told Jasper to give me assignments, just like everyone else. It’s like hiring a personal trainer to kick your ass. So, I have an assignment to look at the different interpretations of American workwear. There is a lot of it. Some of it is great (see Ts(S), a lot of it is really terrible (see most of Italy)).

After too much breakfast – Jasper shows incredible restraint – I see a single pastry and a few slices of proscuitto on his plate – I have a heaping plate of scrambled eggs with a few pieces of bacon and a sausage – we head out to Pitti. About half an hour later, we on the outskirts of the central part of Florence, close to the residential sections where people actually live, probably cursing the invading hordes bearded guys in big coats and very skinny pants. Google maps predictably doesn’t work very well, and I just waste my cellphone battery, but we do find our way to Pitti. Same people. I see the guy in the tartan skirt, again. We split up. I don’t remember what Jasper is working on, but I want to say hi to Jose of La Portegna and to Niyi. Jose is talking to some Japanese buyers, and then arguing about terms with a French woman, and then with another client, so awkwardly take some cellphone pictures of his slippers, and his personal cellphone, which is conveniently placed, like a display, on one of his leather portfolios, and go talk to Niyi at the section for upcoming designers.


It’s Niyi’s first time at Pitti, and getting traction takes a couple of years, so he has time to shoot the ****. I tell him that it takes a couple of years for small brands to get traction, but I’m not sure that he is mollified. Maybe he doesn’t care. His booth is in the main pavilion, which is filled mostly with classic suit wearing people – same floor as Church’s shoes, Isaia, and Borelli. Maybe not the best place for ties and scarves dyed using traditional Yoruba techniques. It feels a little like an academic presentation that doesn’t fit neatly anywhere, so it’s shoehorned into some general section, and no one knows what to make of you. That happened to me a few times during my previous incarnation as an academic, so I sympathize.



I spend most of the time slagging the big coat, skinny pants, “Pitti look”. Niyi joins in, but his meanness seems a bit forced. I am pretty vociferous. I snap a Lochness monster level photo of Lino when he comes by, looking at his cell phone and laughing with friends. I think that he is checking himself out on instagram.

Jen texts me: “I’m here. Taking pictures for Jasper. Do you need anything?”
“No, let’s meet later.”
Then I notice the my battery is nearly dead, so I text “2:15, Touch Pavillion. Mismo.” We know Adam, the Mismo founder/president/CEO/designer/sales rep, so it seems like a good meeting place. Then I go back to talk to Jose. Jose has opinions about a lot of things – business, ugly people, British footballers. Usually, I do all the talking, but Jose easily trumps me. We promise to get a drink the next day. A limoncello. Jose is one of the few people I know who generally means what he says, pretty literally. So, Friday plans have now been made.

It’s time to leave the main pavilion, which is hot and always smells of smoke because no one heeds the 15 feet signs. I am extremely grumpy. I have already seen most of the stuff I want to see on the previous day. Ts(S) has a great wool basketweave over a polyester backing that has been made into both a chore coat and a blazer. It will be faceslappingly expensive. I will buy the chore coat. I will probably end up buying both versions of it. I stomp around the Touch pavilions yet again. Jun Hashimoto has checked out completely. He is looking at something on his cellphone, and can’t be bothered to look at anyone. Everyone recognizes me, since I’ve walked the pavilion about 20 times now. Jen does not show up at 2:15. Or 2: 30. Or 2:45. This gets me pretty pissed off.

I run into Jasper, who was talking to a much shorter guy in black. “That was Faust from SZ” he tells me, as the smaller guy leaves. “Oh”, I am a little disappointed. I’d hoped for something more… conceptual? But it was just another dude in black. Everyone fits an archetype. “Have you seen Jen?” Gracia, who has just walked up to us, tells me that she just saw her, and runs off to find her. She is the only person running. It’s her first Pitti. No one runs here. Everyone ambles. No Jen. I set off to find her. Now I’m really tired, and when I get tired, I get angry and petty. She finds me in front of Touch. Apparently, Jasper has given her a lot of brands of which to take pictures. He has given her a page of notes. “Geez, that’s a lot. ****, let’s just get them done and outta here.” Jen is slower than I’d like, so I ask to use the camera, and go nuts with it. I essentially blaze through the pavilion. One brand, Hansen, mistakes us for another brand, which does “inspirational media”, essentially an industry term for sites that have corporate subscribers and specialize in trend analysis. They don’t want pictures of the collection taken for this type of media. I don’t bother to correct them. “Sure, whatever”, I say, and walk off. We quickly snap off about eight more brand, and walk into the courtyard, which is even more crowded than usual. There, we run into Ms EFV (Erika) and a bunch of bloggers. They all look happy, and are all networking. I had out business cards. I haven’t eaten since breakfast.

Not much happens on the way home, except that I am grumpy and just want to go to sleep. I rail on a Korean brand called Spectator, which is “garments”, and not a coherent collection. I feel like a pretentious ******. I would wear all this stuff. So would Jasper. *******. Before I fall asleep, I email the team asking if they’d like to go to dinner. I set the time at 8:30. I figure that I can gather myself by that time.

Dinner is me, Jen, Jasper, and maybe Gracia, who is supposed to be on her way. Jasper keeps checking his cellphone, but we get no reception in the far end of a stone building. I am happier after some wine. Jasper steps out for a bit. “Yeah, she’s on her way.” We’ve already ordered. We are doing the full four courses. When Gracia arrives, I starting snapping photos of her, and asking her dumb questions. Mostly about how members of the forum perceive her, and what she would say. She is remarkably gracious. She is also gracious about PNP Woman, which, unlike PNP Man, a really welcoming, fun store, is one of the least friendly places I’ve been in a while. I am liking Gracia more and more.



Jen loves burrata – essentially mozzarella with cream inside. It comes at about the same time as Gracia’s Osso Buco. That is two courses away for me. It looks delicious. I have the risotto verdante coming. Risotto calms me down further. It’s also delicious. I love carbs and cheese. I am feeling bloated already, but I soldier through the Osso Buco. Then cheesecake. The others all have the chocolate cake. It makes the cheesecake seem light.
Into the night. We are nearly the last group in the restaurant. The maitre D is tallying up the day. The chef sits across from him, beside us. “I am the chef” Every was great, we tell him. And it was. No matter how frustrating Pitti can be, how tiring and grating after full days there, good food is always a balm.

One of our group, Stephanie, was not able to make dinner. She wants to go out for drinks. I ask Jasper if he wants to come. Jasper is struggling. “She’s not expecting you.” “Oh, then I’m out.” He has Mongolian Death Flu. Stephanie is tired too. We all are. I am so tired that I insist that we take a cab to go down the river instead of walking the good part of a mile. I am in a remarkably good mood for having been so crabby earlier on. It’s the quiet and the warmth of the heat lamps and blankets. And being with people I’ve known for years. Not everything has to be said. We are all dressed way down. I see this a lot every Pitti. People look happiest at breakfast or late night drinks, stripped of their finery. The show is nearly over. It’s nearly time to decompress. I hope that Jasper is not dying of Mongolian Death Flu. I make a mental note to be a nicer person. This feeling will dissipate, but it is a good note on which to end the night.

 

Asian Afro

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Thank you for your suffering. Too bad Hansen didn't let you take pics. I'm interested in their Ole Strange knits. (No, I'm not the guy who asked you to check them out.)
 

Rosenrot

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I took a lot of photos! Will try to post a journal update ASAP after dealing with a mountain of work. Also will be writing my own articles regarding the brands I came across (under overarching themes) which will hopefully be something of interest to you guys.
 

canstyleace

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so I ask to use the camera, and go nuts with it.

I'm hoping these wont be just a bunch of pictures with grainy shadows you can barely make out
 

LA Guy

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I'm hoping these wont be just a bunch of pictures with grainy shadows you can barely make out
With a proper DSLR, or even a cell camera with good lighting, I do okay. The pics I take are sometime magnified and taken in low light from wierd angles, since my house is a mess.
 

clapeyron

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I take a picture of an old dude with a beard, lighting a cigar. He keeps the flame going for me while I take the picture.



I would enjoy seeing a video of you approaching peacocks at pitti, giving them the impression that you intend to take their picture, while actually recording video. I wonder how long some of these coryphaei would freeze in their totally unaffected, nonchalant, iGent pose for you.

Something like this:

0.jpg
 
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