Salvatore ferragamo makes menswear homecoming with florentine runway show

by Stephen Garner

In the first men’s collection under the creative direction of Paul Andrew, Florence came alive last night with the energy of a multicultural, multigenerational vision for the Ferragamo man. The city’s profound artistic, intellectual and economic traditions, the neighboring mills, factories and artisans, the famed Fountain of Neptune recently restored by Ferragamo — all serve as the rich ingredients of a new aesthetic direction, the style code for a new era. At once gloriously ancient and stunningly modern, Florence is the fire in the eye of Ferragamo, a place with which it is and shall always be synonymous.

Traditional menswear codes encounter more youthful notions of style in this collection, such that a lightweight technical parka takes the place of a classic blazer, the five-pocket jean is flared and in leather, the trouser is full throughout the leg and long, and the tailored jacket is rendered as utilitarian sportswear. Masculinity is communicated with a freedom no longer constrained by inflexible gender norms.

Color, raw material and innovative craft hold information and convey culture in Andrew’s Ferragamo. A broad palette of earth tones and natural shades is illuminated with saturated moments of candy pink, luminous green and deep night. Nappa leather bonded with cotton jersey, technical linen gabardine, ripstop cotton nylon, wool mohair, deerskin and sueded calfskin comprises an essential catalog of researched fabrics and skins across ready-to-wear and leather goods. Inspired by archival shoe designs and local Tuscan artisans, intricate weaving techniques and raffia embroideries appear in passages of womenswear, connecting the men’s universe with the women’s, affirming the fundamental role of craftsmanship as the origin and beating heart of the house.

The marriage of high-craft and high-tech, a signature concept in Andrew’s vision for Ferragamo, is articulated here in a split-platform espadrille, an interchangeable laced suede sandal-boot inspired by Salvatore’s 1951 ‘Kimo’ style, and a leather and rubber sneaker conceived with bench-made savoir-faire. Bags and small leather goods project the luxury of impeccable skins and unadorned utility.

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