Pitti Uomo kicked off in Florence on Tuesday and to be honest, this little gem is forgotten about so easily. You can see why though when it is crammed in just after the end of London Fashion Week Men's and just before Milan Fashion Week Men's. For anyone who doesn't know though, Pitti Uomo is a biannual menswear trade fair that is famous for attendees that dress in the most extravagant attire. Hats are so much more jauntier, colours are very bold, pocket squares are puffed to the max and suits are, well, suits are very sharp shouldered. Basically, Pitti Uomo is sartorialism on steroids.
Apart from being a place to potentially get papped by street style gods like Scott Schuman, Pitti is very much a place of business. This is a tradeshow that has been around since 1972 where editors, buyers and retailers all come together to view upcoming collections. And although this does happen just after London and just before Milan, it occupies a different space in the industry than your regular runway filled fashion weeks. We seen it at London Fashion Week Men's - most runway shows are all about theatrical and presentation aspects of a brands aesthetic. Its a completely different story in Florence - its all about that one on one interaction between the buyer and the brand.
I know on first glance it might seem like this is a convention for old, bearded and suited gentlemen who like to stroll around Florence, getting their street style photograph taken, but Pitti's influence throughout the industry has grown stronger and stronger each season. It didn't take long at all for the evnt to shake off its dry business image and become, lets say something more of a spectacle. But a spectacle that is now highly anticipated on the fashion calendar.
Throughout the four days, you can expect every street, every corner, and every walkway to be crammed with trendsetters and influences who are all trying to showcase their very own interpretation of traditional tailoring. Apparently, some even spend months trying to prepare those three or four outfits for their stay. You could literally go from style rookie to fashion MVP just like that if you were spotted and snapped. No pressure.
So, while you are sitting there enjoying the whole bunch of street style galleries that are currently invading the internet (and will continue to do so over the next few days), remember that the infamous Pitti wall that is littered in cigarette buds from some of the most stylish men in the world is about so much more than a chance to update your blog. Take note, Mark.