Trend alert: Styles to copy from Milan Men's Fashion Week

  • Sanya Panwar and AFP, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jan 21, 2015 19:30 IST

Giorgio Armani, Roberto Cavalli, Fendi, Dolce & Gabbana, Neil Barrett, Marc Jacobs, Jil Sander, Bottega Veneta and Missoni all -- showed their Fall/Winter 2015 collections in the Italian fashion capital recently.

While Giorgio Armani took on Fall/Winter 2015 on Tuesday with a typically self-assured look at modern masculinity, mixing casual and conservative dress codes to typically slick effect, veteran Italian designer Roberto Cavalli showed that there's life in the old dog yet, with a fresh new collection with point-toe ankle boots and fur trim on collars.

Wrap your eyes around the strongest trends to emerge from this season's Milan Men's Fashion Week as we tell you what to wear to keep your style game going. Here’s our round-up of all the top trends you should know about.

Giorgio Armani
From the first look featuring a three-button suit in toweling worn with fur accessories, this collection was a statement of intent. This is what the 80-year-old designer wants his modern man to look like. For Fall/Winter 2015 it was all about the soft and hard edges of manhood, à la Hemingway, with Armani's contemporary aesthetes in short-cut jackets paired with high-waisted 1930s inspired pants.

Apart from a final flurry of tailoring, the show mixed off and on-duty looks, from Nordic knits in vicuna, herringbone tweed, and checks both windowpane and plaid, to zip-up shirting and shearling jackets. The 'Milanese' color palette of shades of gray evolved into blacks, browns and blues, with the odd hint of bordeaux and olive green. Despite all the emphasis on the classically masculine and functional, the crocodile blouson and the copious number of fur pieces were a statement of intent for the collection's luxury credentials. They were joined by a military touch from the double-breasted casual jackets and the overcoats with plenty of outer pockets.

More exuberant pieces included the patchwork sweaters, including some with fleece panels and shawl collar jackets, with models carrying fur-sided holdalls, and wearing sensible boots and double monk strap derbies.

Roberto Cavalli
Cavalli is something like the king of opulence, so to hear that his latest collection was inspired by 'the Baroque' is not to be shocked. However, to see opening looks of clean black tailoring with Sport-Goth style 'Empathy' and 'No Bounds' slogans in white on black capslock letters was to be pleasantly surprised by the Florentine designer.

The point-toe ankle boots worn by the models were apparently inspired by American rock 'n' rollers but designed to deal with the 'Tuscan Prairie', and they came with slim pants in wool, denim or leather, and a slightly looser trouser silhouette in print. There was also some sharp plaid shirting in restrained tones, and a twisted yet unfussy version of a herringbone. That said, there were plenty of the things that keep the designer's fans coming back for more: from fur trim on collars, astrakhan coats and shearling jackets to intarsia knitwear featuring a rorschach rococo pattern.

The furs came as enrobing monochrome coats, or as the linings of sporty military parkas (complete with webbing pockets) and were worn with more denim, now either decadently distressed or sparkled with metallics. Cavalli's traditional snakeskin touch came as a subtle black python trim on the tuxedo lapels.

The latest menswear collection from Canali was inspired by the post-war optimism and dynamic nature of the city of Milan in the 1950s. "Milan in those years was something unique," explained Andrea Pompilio, now full-time creative consultant at the brand. "A perfect mix of the precision of the past and an explosive sense of creativity, a mixture of practicality and imagination tempered by a typically Italian sense of elegance."

This clash of old and new saw a rubber galoshes effect on suede and leather lace-up brogues or velcro closure shoes, and hiking boots with a sneaker sole. The sharp, tight-fitting tailoring came with horizontal stripes or a windowpane check, along with double-breasted blazers and overcoats in cashmere. Meanwhile the more casual looks included oversized knit sweaters, boiled wool and shearling duffle coats, an on-trend bonded suede coat and denim jeans with retro cuffed turn-ups.

The collection stuck to a neutral palette of monochromes and creams with a touch of mustard yellow, petrol blue and deep marsala, which were used as accent colors and on accessories like the buttery leather backpacks and document holders. Pompilio then ended proceedings with a series of highly desirable colored tuxedos (both single and double-breasted) worn with matching minimalist velvet slippers.

Silvia Venturini Fendi was inspired by academic dressing for Fall/Winter 2015. Not the formal gowns and mortar boards of ceremonial occasions, but a certain distillation of the long scarves, corduroy and tweeds of professors and staff going about everyday campus life. Shoes were sensible: lug-soled penny loafers, with a few sportier high top sneakers thrown in the mix.

Fendi's teacher duly arrived in a chunky, velvety take on corduroy tailoring, and a patchwork of different tweeds. Shearling jackets were joined by some highly desirable suede outerwear, which seems to be the new fur-collared coat when it comes to luxury winter dressing for men. In other 'on trend' news, there was also some of the hybrid style that has also been on the runway this season, with knit sweaters blending down into full furs by the waist with a gradient effect.

Key to the collection's success were the cheeky little touches like the fabric apples ('for teacher', we presume) attached to caramel leather bags (alongside the 'Bag Bugs'), and the soccer balls poking out of the mesh compartments in the fur backpacks (had they been confiscated?). The intarsia sweaters were worn on their own or paired with shirts and ties that came striped and with a certain retro appeal.

Creative director Brendan Mullane celebrated 70 years of the Italian brand with Brioni's first runway show since 1995, held at the Castello Sforzesco in Milan. For Fall/Winter 2015 it was a case of back to the future for Brioni. The brand was the first ever to stage a men's runway show, which took place all the way back in 1952. Without any male model agencies, they had to dress up their own store assistants in the clothes.

Now come January 2015, and celebrating their 70th anniversary, the stripe down an early pair of trousers was a reminder that there were two key influences to the collection, both rooted in early 20th century Vienna: one the city's famous riding school, the other the Wiener Werkstätte design school. There was a military rigor to the belted overcoats, collar pins on shirts, leather gloves, and the ticket pockets on two and three button tailoring, which came with tapered trousers (an equestrian nod to jodphurs). The bags and other accessories also channeled the expertise of saddlemakers, including contrast stitching in leather and other hard-working threads, while the shoes included cavalry boots and double monk strap brogues.

The Brioni man's more artistic side came out in the fur wrap collars, fur sweaters with knitted sleeves, quilted and suede blouson jackets, hazy checks patterns and more relaxed duffle coats. To round it all off, a crocodile trenchcoat was a suitably luxe injection of loucheness.

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