Fashion & Music: the Art of Styling

Fashion and music are two sides of the same coin, two universes of meaning which dialogue and create a hybrid with one another. We are always led to consider them as a single entity, and perhaps we wouldn’t even be able to imagine one disconnected from the other. Artists such as Elvis Presley, The Beatles, Madonna, Michael Jackson and Lady Gaga have taught us that the right image can define, if not build, an entire character, just as much as their talent. Besides, many scholars have explored this connection, most notably the anthropologist Ted Polhemus, who often stressed how “Over the course of history, the musician has been a figure to watch, besides being listened to”.

Thus music and fashion are two forms of communication, two actual languages. Now more than ever, the visual package of musical talents is manufactured behind the scenes, and behind this process lie stylists, professional figures capable of bringing life to imaginaries of strong emotional impact, which powerfully attract our gaze.

“Above all, dressing a person means knowing their true essence. That is where everything starts. I see clothing as a bridge between different cultural areas and physicality: only when I manage to build solid bridges is my work done”. These are the words Susanna Ausoni, celebrity styling queen in Italy, describes her profession that has led her to collaborate with the biggest artists in music and showbiz. Ausoni has a long career behind her, first working for MTV in the 90s, and currently being the creator of looks for stars of the calibre of Mahmood, Noemi, Elisa and Francesca Michielin.

Nicolò “Nick” Cerioni, a creative visionary who often uses irony and surprise, had his professional training precisely with Ausoni. He has collaborated with Jovanotti for 10 years. Cerioni’s aesthetic signature is surely high-impact and often controversial; not coincidentally, he is indeed behind many of Achille Lauro’s, including that by Gucci which he wore at the 2020 edition of the Sanremo Festival, an unforgettable tulle, crystal-studded jumpsuit.

He is also the person behind Måneskin’s glam-rock aesthetics, as well as the new trend that Orietta Berti has recently taken up; “Orietta is a free, open-minded woman, she is our Lady Gaga”, he commented, surely a daring comparison which however high- lights the irony behind such a makeover.

Sometimes a change in image can put an artist’s career into turbo mode. As one of the most requested stylists in the music biz, Ramona Tabita knows this quite well. She is behind Elodie’s metamorphosis from ‘Amici’ alumna to femme fatale, as well as Ghali’s frequent collaborator for years.

Levante
Lorenzo Oddo with Levante

One of the biggest new names in the field is Lorenzo Oddo, a.k.a. Mr. Lollo, fashion designer who was part of the Marco de Vincenzo’s team for years, as well as Levante’s go-to stylist. “Claudia is an expressive, extraordinary force, she’s like a blank page that paints itself through clothing, in different colours each time. She’s got exceptional charisma, she can wear anything without it overpowering her image”, he says.

It is precisely during a Levante concert that Oddo met Veronica Lucchesi and Dario Mangiaracina, a.k.a. La Rappresentante di Lista, whose image he also curated at the latest edition of the Sanremo Festival. “When I heard the song, I instantly thought of putting two characters on the stage; we spent months in the Moschino archives looking for the right pieces that would help us represent the song’s themes visually. The record is apparently light, fun, but at the same time, it compels us to think about the world around us. We opted for looks that were apparently playful, but that would also convey a deep message, high-impact outfits that would perfectly complement the narrative. Styling starts from the mind, there has to be some thought behind it”.

La Rappresentante di Lista style
Lorenzo Oddo with La Rappresentante di Lista
La Rappresentante di Lista style

If we will remember Blanco’s cloaks and light blouses from the latest Sanremo Festival, we have Silvia Ortombina, a.k.a. Tiny Idols, to  thank, who’s collaborated with the artist for years.  “I wanted to translate carnality into simple elegance, to represent the body rather than the spirit, to represent a lucid dream that lives in an authentic, real feeling. Pierpaolo Piccioli has always had the ability to superbly translate that kind of aesthetics, and I was honoured to collaborate with the Valentino team, starting precisely with the Maison’s statements: cloak and chiffon. I wanted to give life to a powerful message by combining embroidery and tattoos, repainting the body in a precious, but simple way at the same time, affirming that fashion is not a question of trends, but style”.

Who can argue with that?

Blanco Valentino
Blanco on stage at Fabrique Milano
Blanco fashion
Silvia Ortombina with Blanco

Opening image: Riccardo Fabbriconi a.k.a. Blanco

Oh so pretty

Model Luigi Bruno, in front of Davide Musto’s lens, plays with the cult pieces of the new season and shows off a naturally fluid attitude, fitting with ease lace micro tops, sleeveless pleated blouses, studded blazers and leather accessories with a BDSM flair.

Luigi Bruno model
Shirt Youwei, pants Roberto Cavalli
Fashion editorial fluidity
Shirt Youwei, pants Roberto Cavalli
Luigi Bruno Instagram
Total look and shoes John Richmond, choker Vanesi, socks stylist’s archive

Credits

Talent Luigi Bruno @Elite Milano, CmodelsCrew

Editor in Chief Federico Poletti

Photographer Davide Musto

Stylist Alessandra Gubinelli

Photographer assistant Valentina Ciampaglia

Stylist assistant Federica Mele

Make-up Alessandro Joubert @simonebelliagency

Hair Sara Petrucci @makingbeautymanagement

Napapijri x Moreno Ferrari

Napapijri x Moreno Ferrari is the capsule collection created thanks to the collaboration between the outerwear brand Napapijri and the famous Italian designer and artist Moreno Ferrari. The inspiration for the concept came from the ‘NO Project’, an installation created by the artist in 2018 when he revisited one of Napapijri’s icons, the Skidoo jacket, transforming it into a work of art. Ferrari’s vision turned the Skidoo into an armour with traces of urban material in contrast with nature: a symbolic encounter between the artist and the brand to reflect on the boundary between commitment and civic responsibility towards the environment, especially for fashion. The desire to develop projects with this philosophy, where negative becomes positive, translates into a Circular Capsule Collection that combines design, sustainability and an innovative and ethical approach to the environment.

Napapijri Moreno Ferrari
Alan Cappelli Goetz wears Napapijri x Moreno Ferrari

Each garment is 100% recyclable

The capsule features a range of sustainable and fully recyclable urban looks. The five styles draw on elements borrowed from the urban landscape – such as bubble wrap and plastic safety nets – and focus on the need to reuse and recycle as much as possible. Each garment is 100% recyclable, made of ECONYL® regenerated nylon: an innovative fibre created from plastic waste such as old fishing nets, rugs and industrial waste. It has the same quality as virgin nylon, but unlike the latter, is infinitely recyclable.

Napapijri capsule Moreno Ferrari
Alan Cappelli Goetz wears Napapijri x Moreno Ferrari

Objects that have heart, an ethic” (Moreno Ferrari)

Moreno Ferrari comments: “My design approach and this work in particular always takes society into account, it is a declaration of courage. Starting from the concept of beyond, crossing that ideal threshold beyond which one cannot go. Using recycled materials creates endless products and the result are objects that have heart, an ethic. There is no aesthetics without ethics nowadays”.

Strengthening Napapijri’s commitment to designing a circular future for fashion, the brand’s online take-back program allows all capsule products to be returned two years after purchase so that they can be transformed into new yarn and new products. Martino Scabbia Guerrini, executive vice president & group president of Vf Emea said: “This work is a perfect synthesis of what the market is today, where consumers are aware of sustainability but attentive to design. On the company side, we must look at the meeting points between communities, culture and our vision of design and aesthetics, always maintaining the strong commitment to sustainability that has distinguished us for many years”.

Napapijri sustainable
Alan Cappelli Goetz wears Napapijri x Moreno Ferrari

Alan Cappelli Goetz was called on to interpret this capsule collection, as an actor who’s always attentive to green issues and responsible fashion. He is featured in an editorial set along the naviglio della Martesana, a crossroads between nature and urban culture, a place that has been redeveloped today and full of surprising stories.

Napapijri eco collection
Alan Cappelli Goetz wears Napapijri x Moreno Ferrari

In the opening image, Alan Cappelli Goetz wears Napapijri x Moreno Ferrari

The romantic fashion of Ann Demeulemeester, (also) featured at Pitti Uomo

The 102nd edition of Pitti Immagine Uomo is about to open its doors. This year features an exceptional special guest, who over the course of her career lasting more than 40 years has written indelible pages of the history of fashion with a capital F: in fact, the Ann Demeulemeester brand will be the guest of honour of the Florentine kermesse, as the protagonist of a special project curated by the same Flemish designer that will animate Leopolda Station during the four days of the event (14-17 June). It is a significant part of the brand’s relaunch strategy, which has been under Claudio Antonioli since 2020, added to the three collections designed so far by an internal creative team, as well as the reopening in September 2021 of the flagship boutique in Antwerp, a place intimately linked to the (glorious) past of the Belgian label.

The store was redesigned by Patrick Robyn, Ann’s husband and close collaborator, and is a showcase for the label’s new direction under the aegis of Antonioli. An entrepreneur, owner of the eponymous multibrand and already one of the co-founders of New Guards Group, he acquired the brand a year ago, determined to restore it to its rightful role. Indeed, it was the founder who brought it to the top of the fashion world as one of the Antwerp Six: the six designers (in addition to Ann, Dries Van Noten, Marina YeeDirk Van SaeneDirk BikkembergsWalter Van Beirendonck) who graduated from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp in the early 1980s and would soon make an indelible mark on the fashion of the time, becoming a fundamental part of fashion history.

Ann Demeulemeester: the beginnings

Ann Demeulemeester portrait
Ann Demeulemeester in her studio, Antwerp, 1999 (ph. by Kevin Davies)
Antwerp Six
The Antwerp Six

Just think: born in 1959 in Waregem, West Flanders, Demeulemeester had considered dedicating her time to painting in the beginning, as attracted as she was by Flemish portraiture, but soon realised the expressive strength of clothing and enrolled in fashion design at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts. She graduated in 1981, giving rise to the brand that bears her name four years later along with Robyn. In 1986 she joined forces with the above-mentioned university partners: they rented a van, filled it with their own creations and travelled to London to exhibit them at the British Designers Show, where they were a huge sensation. Their proposals, on the other hand, were astronomically far from the pomp prevailing in the eighties, a decade characterised, stylistically speaking, by shoulders, baroque, glitter and much more, their touchpoints were rather more in step with the conceptualism driven by the innovators who had arrived in Paris from the Far East a few years earlier, Yohji Yamamoto and Rei Kawakubo.

Ann Demeulemeester’s creative inspirations

Having gained notoriety, Demeulemeester began to detail her very particular vision of ready-to-wear: in her opinion, clothing is a means of communicating, an emanation of the creator’s personality, of her sensations, experiences and interests. The Belgian creative orients the latter towards the verses of poets like Rimbaud, Blake or Byron, on the music that expresses the anxieties of the youth of that time (Doors, Velvet Underground, Nick Cave…), on those paintings that, in youth, had pointed her towards the art school of Bruges. As a teenager, she then came across the cover of Patti Smith’s album Horses, with the cover featuring the artist in black and white wearing a superbly androgynous outfit (the work of Robert Mapplethorpe, cursed genius of American photography); she fell in love with the music and even more with her style: in her academy years she made three white shirts and managed to send them to the singer’s address in Detroit.

Patti Smith Ann Demeulemeester
Ann Demeulemeester with Patti Smith

The priestess of rock became her muse, and a friendship and mutual esteem soon arose between the two, with Smith even signing the introduction of the monograph published by Rizzoli USA in 2014, which retraces over 30 years of the label’s history with words and images, dwelling on the sentimental value that the garments signé Demeulemeester have for her (“I draw great power from wearing Ann’s clothes. They make me feel safe […] They are a talisman”, she wrote).

First collections

In the brand’s collections all this translates into a twilight romanticism veined with melancholy and bohemian spirit, in the chromatic absolutism of black and white (sometimes broken by flashes of bright colour), in the tension between opposing elements (rigour and delicacy, body and lightness, fluid shapes and others adhering to the body) that characterise every outfit, a real leitmotif of the designer’s work.
The first women’s fashion show in Paris was held in 1991, in a bare art gallery where severe, blatantly dark looks broke out, crushed by critics branding them “funeral directors”. She adjusted the bar, made her silhouettes drier and further refined her vision with almost scientific precision, while remaining elusive with unambiguous definitions and easy categorisations, which soon began to tickle the interest of the press, buyers and simple observers, struck by the designers cutting-edge, often deconstructive, approach.

Menswear did not take long to arrive, and in 1996 men’s outfits began to appear, seamlessly mixed with the women’s releases, a choice that was repeated in subsequent collections until the creation of a specific line in 2005. Besides, Demeulemeester never paid too much attention to gender distinctions, clearly ahead of today’s gender fluid. Men and women therefore shared many of the cornerstones that, season after season, forged the maison’s aesthetics: the insistence on fluid and elongated lines, bias cuts, preferably graceful, naturally soft fabrics (silk, rayon, jersey, linen), with textures reduced to a minimum even in the most dense materials such as leather or cloth, surfaces punctually rippled by layering or clever draping, the copious use of belts, ribbons and cords, as if to support garments from which a sense of precariousness emanates, of only apparent carelessness which is then the essence of Demeulemeester fashion.

Ann Demeulemeester collections
Ph. Erik Madigan Heck for Nomenus Quarterly
Ann Demeulemeester collections
Ph. Erik Madigan Heck for Nomenus Quarterly

The success of the label and her retiring from the stage

The brand’s man has a perennially dreamy look and a noble but tormented soul; a bit the maudit of today, a bit rebellious metropolitan style, with relaxed-fit trousers and crumpled blazers. A hint of vanity is granted with the use of feathers, a decoration that exemplifies the dialectic between natural sophistication and eccentricity that is so dear to the designer: thus feathers resting on wide-brimmed hats, attached to necklaces, bracelets and other jewellery or even covering the boas wrapping around the clothes of the Fall/Winter 2010 show.

Ann Demeulemeester runway
Ann Demeulemeester S/S 2007 (ph. by Giovanni Giannoni)

The brand’s consolidation process reached its peak with the S/S 1997 collection, a symphony in black & white punctuated, for the men’s part, by hints of layering, widely unbuttoned shirts and pants almost liquid in their looseness. This time the critics enthusiastically applauded the textbook performance, the New York Met Costume Institute purchased several key pieces, and the cult brand status became clear. Her withdrawal from the scene was a surprise in 2013, communicated with a handwritten letter. She was succeeded by Sébastien Meunier, who worked in the wake of his illustrious predecessor, introducing minimal variations from time to time, fluorescent touches here (S/S 2016), softness with decadent aesthetics of a closed bedroom there (S/S 2018).

Ann Demeulemeester black white
Ph. by Erik Madigan Heck

A new turning point: Antonioli

The new turning point came in the summer of 2020 when Meunier left the maison and after a few weeks Antonioli, one of the brand’s first historic retailers, took on the role for an undisclosed amount. The founder was (re)convened to play the role of creative consultant, some already hypothesise her greater involvement, her niche, while the new owner speaks to MF Fashion of a ‘new beginning’, yet to be written. Basically, it is a rethinking of the concept of masculinity, finally called upon to recognise all the fragilities, doubts and fears inherent in the human soul: the masculine ideal of Demeulemeester is present more than ever.

Ann Demeulemeester b&w
F/W 2021 collection

Matthew Zorpas, the first “digital” gentleman

When it comes to savoir-vivre, elegance and men’s style (concepts that are often overused but still hardly investigated in their countless nuances), Matthew Zorpas is the perfect person to examine the state of the art of everything relating to modern gentlemen’s customs and habits. Exactly ten years ago, this multifaceted Cypriot creative entrepreneur, Londoner by adoption, launched the site ‘The Gentleman Blogger’, which quickly became a touchstone for menswear and lifestyle in general, addressing outfits (often formal and highly recognised, for instance Esquire UK magazine included him in its annual ‘Best Dressed Men’ list in 2010) as well as travel (another passion and atout of the founder), wellness, tips for a community of passionate, demanding and cosmopolitan people.

The Gentleman Blogger influencer
Coat Paul Smith

In short, Zorpas proved to be a true forerunner of the matter, focusing on men and their interests well before the crowds of male influencers (or self-styled ones) on social media today. The numbers attest to his success, together with all the brands with which The Gentleman Blogger has collaborated over the years, from IWC to Tod’s, Fendi, Bentley, Nespresso and many others.
We had the chance to talk with him during his shooting about what distinguishes true gentlemen today, the impact of Covid on men’s taste in clothing, the changes affecting the men’s fashion industry and society as a whole, from the transformations in the communication scenario full of influencers up to the metaverse.

Matthew Zorpas Instagram
Total look Pal Zileri, shoes Church’s, watch Cartier

For several years now you have been considered a role model for contemporary (and aspiring) gentlemen, as the title of your – very popular – blog suggests. What distinguishes a true gentleman in 2022, what are his qualities in terms of style and otherwise?

I have seen the definition, attitude and form of the term change over the last ten years. At the end of the day a gentleman is pure, it is all about soul. It’s not an act or a lifestyle but a living. It’s not a forced, well-thought-out bespoke suit, but a casual choice of dressing up. It is so much easier to dress like a gentleman today and yet so much harder to carry the qualities of one.

The Gentleman Bloggercrosses the ten-year line this year. This platform allows you a privileged view of everything related to the male universe. In your opinion, what are the main changes that have affected menswear and, more in general, men’s lifestyle over this period of time?

I founded The Gentleman Blogger in 2012 and have been on this wonderful ride for ten years. I have seen the industry shift its attitude from arrogance towards influencers to embracing us, cheering us and choosing us. I have seen men’s lifestyle shift from proper and standard to relaxed and diverse.

Matthew Zorpas Gucci
Jacket Gucci @Tiziana Fausti (www.tizianafausti.com), shirt and scarf vintage

You prefer a personal style marked by sophistication, elegance with an ‘old school’ flair for tailored suits, patterns and motifs in the best British traditions, tuxedos, perfectly cut garments. Yet the lockdown, remote working and other consequences of the pandemic have deeply changed (and often negatively) formal attire, which had already been affected by significant transformations caused by changing consumer tastes and habits. How do you think formal wear will change in the future?

Change is welcomed here. Fashion is an industry that must follow consumers: it is for the diverse and knowledgeable consumer. It will continue to reflect movements, political or environmental crises. It is our job to make sure it moves and changes, it predicts and follows. Sadly, those who hold back will fail. Don’t translate this as an expansion in offering choices and options, but more on doing what is true to the DNA of the maison and doing it well.

Matthew Zorpas fashion
Total look Dolce&Gabbana, watch Cartier, burgundy ring Bulgari, shoes Christian Louboutin

Covid also impacted influencers between restrictions, closures and other disruptions, prompting them to change the tone and type of content posted on Instagram, Facebook & Co. Not to mention that this industry was already grappling with unprecedented challenges, from the ‘saturation’ of space to the pitfalls of virtual ’competitors’, the metaverse and other innovations that could soon change social media as we know it. What can you tell us about this, what is the state of the art in influencing?

Influencers as an industry will be here to stay for many years ahead. Just like the publishing industry had its run, we will need to allow the digital space to expand, grow, develop and when the right time comes it will clear and decline. We have not experienced the peak yet, as we are only now experiencing the years of transition from offline to online. The upcoming generation Alpha is developed and dedicated to online only.

Speaking of the metaverse, what’s your take on this? Could – and should – gentlemen also carve out their own space in a virtual reality based on pixels and avatars?

I am aware of the metaverse, it is not my personal space or choice. I am aware of TikTok too, it’s not my space though. We need to remind everyone that we have a choice to be anywhere we want to be. New platforms or worlds shouldn’t be there to replace the old but to satisfy and please the consumer.

Matthew Zorpas jewels
Total look Emporio Armani, ring Nikos Koulis

Travelling is one of your great passions, you have always cared about the world of hospitality and you have also collaborated with the Ministry of Tourism of your country Cyprus. After the Coronavirus ’storm’, do you think there will be structural changes in this sector?

With the beginning of the pandemic, every sector or industry had to implement structural changes, especially in the western world. From deliveries to production, to tourism and hospitality. With my team and the Cyprus Deputy Ministry of Tourism, we managed to put together the first open air social distancing ‘RoundTable’ event in 2020, followed by the ‘7AM campaign’ in 2021 and ‘ImagineBeingHere’ in 2022. We needed to rebuild the dream when there were no flights to the country, rebuild the need for people to visit when flights opened up again and now we are reminding visitors of both as we go back to normal.

Matthew Zorpas bio
Total look Zegna

Can you name at least three garments/accessories that should never be missing from the wardrobe, the ‘never without’ of every self-respecting gentleman?

There is absolutely no basic garment that anyone must own. We break every rule and every single one of us needs and should own whatever is necessary to them. I used to always say a double-breasted suit and a tuxedo. Now you can have a plain white t-shirt and Levi’s jeans and be a gentleman. Let’s move on with the times.

Matthew Zorpas style
Total look Alexander McQueen

Although making predictions is risky, how do you imagine The Gentleman Blogger in ten years’ time? What might characterise the gentleman community in the near future?

The Gentleman Blogger has been a wonderful adventure. I’m quite pleased with the change, the innovation, the creativity, the passion and community that has loved and surrounded this amazing project for ten years. I have no predictions about how my next project will develop but I’m excited to embark on the next adventure with the strength, purity and health to fight for it to become a success.

Credits

Talent Matthew Zorpas

Photographer Georgios Motitis

Styling Giorgia Cantarini

Stylist assistant Federica Mele, Emma Thompson, Mariam Ajami from MA Fashion Styling – Istituto Marangoni London

Location The Dorchester

Horoscope for March 2021: Stars & Styles

Welcome to Stars and Styles, our NEW monthly horoscope appointment, with the guidance of Astro-coach Massimo Giannone, renowned astrologer. Gifted with exceptional sensitivity, he reads with a methodical eye and interprets with the gift of intuition. Giannone has literally conquered the heart of Italy, starting from Milan, the capital of fashion and publishing, with his fixed appointments on Il Sole 24 Ore and Gioia.

His method has also conquered the high-end fashion industry, which has led him to be the protagonist of fashion events and promotional tours throughout Italy for brands such as Maliparmi and Prairie. His approach, far from generic, enters the psychological and soul aspect of the personalities linked to the zodiacal sign, with a perceptive interpretative key that is aimed at providing advice for rebirth, rebuilding.

Experiences are teachings, if you learn to grasp their directives, your life can change completely” says Massimo Giannone.

Curated by Francesca Romana Riggio

Text by Astro Coach Massimo Giannone

Illustrations by Maria Lombardi


Aries – Everything in our existence seems to come from Chaos. In ancient Greek mythology, it is said that in the beginning was only Chaos, a powerful and malevolent divinity that generated Fate. Erebus was the dark and the Parcae determined the destiny of men from the disorder of these deities. Then, more positive figures were created such as Venus, the goddess of love, Gea, and many others who restored the order. 

Dear Aries friends, to sort out your daily life, you need a path of sharing and union with others, you cannot always do everything yourself. It is necessary to join others to better find solutions, as they say: “unity is strength.”

Love: with the moon in the sign on the 14th of March, you will be able to take the right initiatives and, your spirit, close to the needs of your partner, will help you remedy some situations that do not work in your relationship. Young people will have to avoid isolating themselves to steal someone’s heart, preferring affinity to irony. 

Career: to increase revenue, it will be necessary to create a team. If not possible, try to relate to your loved ones and ask them for advice. Go through with what you start and keep you updated with your job, maybe by attending a specialization course or reading articles about your field.” It is necessary to unite, not to stand together, but to do something together” claimed Goethe, a German writer and playwright.

Your Path: Collaborating with others to pursue an idea, a project, and to achieve a goal helps overcome obstacles. An exchange of opinions with other people allows you to broaden your mind; a sane confrontation simplifies your own path. This is a way to implement your resources through the viewpoint of several people who analyze together the situation by monitoring positive and negative feedback dictated by past experience, thus satisfying not only the personal interest but also the collective one.


Taurus – Dissatisfaction is a useful emotion for people to report something wrong in their paths. It is a warning that suggests changing direction so that you can improve aspects of your daily life.

In the song by Fiorella Mannoia “Fighter”, a part of the melody says:” It’s a rule to be applied in the whole universe/Those who do not fight for something have already lost/ And even though fear makes you tremble/ I have never given up fighting.”This song talks about the positive and negative events that happen to all of us over time; we fight every day to make sense of our life that flows through joy and sorrow while time is rushing by. It is an invitation to look at the future with wisdom and without illusion, and especially an invitation to fight.

Dear Taurus friends, Jupiter and Saturn will bring you some dissatisfaction, not to punish you but to give you new opportunities.

Love: it will be necessary to mitigate your vision and look for new stimuli in your relationship. Try to surprise your partner with an unusual attitude or with a simple smile. This will lead to new situations of harmony and understanding in your relationship. 

Career: don’t let pessimistic thoughts bring you down if work is not going as you’d like. Instead, look for new incentives, try to set your limits, and react by questioning yourself and asking for help from someone who has a clearer view.” Those who are not satisfied with what they have would not be satisfied even if they had what they desire,” said Socrates, a Greek philosopher. 

Your Path: you need to avoid dissatisfaction becoming permanent in your soul, otherwise you will have difficulty in finding new stimuli. If you look into the causes of your disappointment, you can create reactive and benevolent energies, you can eliminate frustration and realize that every obstacle is a means to change and improve yourself. Avoid extreme self-criticism and look at the future that always gives new and positive expectations.


Gemini – A genuine authenticity leads the human being to the truth, in a path where there is no misunderstanding. The truth cannot be the non-truth. 

Oscar Wilde claimed:” Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” However, it is not always easy to be ourselves; in a certain way, our societies impose on us a role that does not allow us to reveal ourselves, so wearing a mask is more convenient.

We should behave as children do: they express their feelings with authentic spontaneity, naivety and curiosity. Authentic individuals let go of negative people, they express what they think clearly and they don’t care if others disagree. They overcome anxiety through their self-confidence and stay true to what they think. 

Dear Gemini friends, your path is not easy, but this is necessary to solve some problems. With the help of Saturn, you will have to let go of what it’s not good for you to become more genuine. 

Love: you will give more space to your partner’s needs, with an attitude based on trust and respect for others’ necessities, discerning good and evil in everything with great authenticity.

Career: a great liveliness, together with your friendly and communicative nature, will help you overcome obstacles, establishing clear boundaries between what you desire and what you can actually achieve. Rewards and earnings are coming. “You will learn at your expense that in life’s long journey you will meet many masks and few true faces,” said Luigi Pirandello, an Italian playwright and writer.

Your Path: a frank attitude leads to paths of evolution, which others might not fully understand, but it will be necessary to obtain a deeper spirit and get rid of what you won’t need anymore, as well. You will replace your old identity with a new one that relies on truth and profundity. Frivolity and negligence will become part of your past. 


Cancer – Being rational means having a logical approach and behaving in a balanced manner to reach specific goals. 

In his studies on cognitive psychology, Herbert Alexander Simon, economist and psychologist, deals with the so-called “Olympic rationality” describing it as if it was made of two contracts, one of which is completed and the other one is not. He uses an image to illustrate the effects: one hand grabbing an object firmly and the other one trembling. If you are determined and have a clear vision, you will grab the object with confidence and determination. 

Dear Cancer friends, this is the path to follow this month. With a great sense of reasoning, it will be necessary to pursue your set goals with determination, being aware of your own means. 

Love: resentment might be a deterrent and spoil the serenity of your evenings. Non-benevolent Pluto does not bring out the best of you. A non-contradictory attitude, together with self-esteem might be the right key to giving balance to your relationship. Be clear and show your interest to those you love. 

Career: You need to be more cooperative and avoid closing yourself off to others’ opinions and views. Try to be generous and unselfish towards your partners and colleagues. You have excellent opportunities to make a profitable investment. “A mind is like a parachute. It doesn’t work if it is not open,” claimed Albert Einstein, a German physicist. 

Your Path: If you are determined and have a clear vision, you will grab the object with confidence and determination. Never lose your temper when you do not accept things. Instead, act rationally, maybe not immediately, but with clarity of purpose and determination at the right moment.


Leo – According to Tommaso D’Aquino, it is allowed to tolerate religious diversity because faith is the work of the Divine Grace and, consequently, it’s not up to man to judge. 

Voltaire, a French philosopher and historian, in his treatise on tolerance, describes his vision about freedom of religion, which must be based on respect for others’ ideas and opinions in order to build a civil society.

This is still a current issue. Nowadays, in many parts of the world, “the different one” is being persecuted instead of being integrated into society as an opportunity for dialogue. 

Dear Leo friends, during this difficult phase, owing to Saturn’s opposition and Uranus challenging your tolerance, you will need to revise your attitude. Be leaders, but also humble and, above all, tolerant. 

Love: you will have the chance to restore your relationship with a romantic and selfless attitude. In this way, you will overcome recent misunderstandings, you will find happiness and intimacy with your partner. 

Career: At work, someone or something will get on your nerves. Be tolerant and discuss without judgment, accepting different opinions. In this way, you will be appreciated and obstacles will turn into new beneficial opportunities for you, too. “The golden rule of conduct is mutual toleration, seeing that we will never all think alike and we shall see Truth in fragment and from different angles of vision,” claimed Mahatma Gandhi, an Indian politician, philosopher and lawyer. 

Your Path: It is possible to create a balanced and harmonious environment through respectful behavior towards others’ ideas, even though they are not in tune with yours. Respect and tolerance towards what is different lead to dialogues that can improve our society. 


Virgo – Everyone often faces unclear situations. Emotions can be a strong deterrent to your behavior; doubts and perplexities push you to react impulsively when instead you should meditate wisely and let time give you a chance to get back to certainty and clarity. 

In a song by Carmen Consoli, “A plastic love”, she talks about the renunciation of an inconsistent love. A part of the melody says:” I wanted to be stronger than all your doubts, but I can’t settle for it if all you can give me is a plastic love“. Let’s not settle, let’s overcome our uncertainties even though they might lead to a loss. 

Dear Virgo friends, this phase will be characterized by great fragility and a sense of helplessness that could make you react unproperly. 

Love: excessive stress can lead you to isolate yourself from your partner. This might be useful, but only if it is without anger and silence. Instead, explain your needs. Be patient and sympathetic. 

Career: you need to lighten the load. It is okay to have your own responsibilities, but you need to give yourself time and focus on your needs. Thanks to your tenacity, you will achieve excellent results.” The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent full of doubt“, said Bertrand Russel, a philosopher. 

Your Path: Everyone often faces unclear situations. Emotions can be a strong deterrent to your behavior; doubts and concerns push you to react impulsively when instead you should meditate wisely and let time give you a chance to get back to certainty and clarity. I think that true love is the solution to many afflictions. Donating gives comfort to the soul even more than receiving. 


Libra – Myth and philosophy tend to explain what surrounds us through observation and reasoning. While the first one sticks to a description, an association with a deity, philosophy tries to go deeply into the truth and understand it through critical analysis.

In a song by Louis Armstrong “What a Wonderful World”, the singer observes the beauty that surrounds us, reflects on the meaning of life and the diversity of humankind and tries to give hope to the future. In a part of the song he describes the world like this: ” I see skies so blue and clouds so white. The bright blessed day, the dark sacred night. And I think to myself: what a wonderful world.” These beautiful lyrics convey the beauty of everything and give a little hope at this time of great social difficulties. 

Dear Libra friends, with favorable Jupiter and Mercury, your phase turns out to be full of opportunities. However, you have to think carefully about the best way to go. 

Love: This moment turns out to be very positive to clear away the cobwebs and the bad mental intentions of your recent past. Through a lightness of mind and attention to the needs of those who love you, you can reach peaks of harmony and stability.

Career:  youwill be able to dose clearly between personal and business needs. A careful vision of what you really need will definitely lead to rewards and earnings. Perhaps review your work several times so every detail will be successful. “Learning without reflection is a waste. Reflection without learning is dangerous“, said Confucius, a Chinese philosopher. 

Your Path: being conscious leads to a high level of maturity in dealing with any daily occurrence. Pondering and reflecting helps you have the right view by adopting the best behavior. Like a wave propagating through different means, reflecting helps you change direction towards more appropriate destinations. A soul lights up through the understanding of the dynamics that surround us. 


Scorpio – Who among us does not have vices? It is easy to look at those of others and judge. Sometimes a simple word can hurt the other person. It is always necessary to weigh your words before you speak to avoid harming yourself and others, understanding that words are powerful, for better or worse. Understanding what we do educates us to respect, not to want to do to others what we do not want to be done to us. This is a pearl of fundamental wisdom because it lays the foundations for a better world. 

In the myth, Mercury, the messenger of gods, was willing to lie in order to get anything. But it is also said that he separated two snakes that were fighting, making peace between them. There is a double aspect of the same myth, sometimes the wise prevailed, other times the scoundrel like it is in each of us: a struggle between a positive polarity and a negative one. Only through the right word that is said to the soul, you choose the best way.

Dear Scorpio friends, saying the right word to your soul will be the way to follow. This time turns out to be favorable, but you need to control everything you do and analyze it carefully before making any decision. 

Love: with favorable Pluto and Neptune, you can enjoy pleasant news, but you need to put an end to your past that still afflicts you, because you think you did not deserve such a treatment. Live for today and tomorrow and forget any rivalry that might make you miss the opportunity to experience something new. 

Career: at work, with a clear vision of your task management, you will be able to share and give advice to people around you with the right word at the right time. This will lead you to receive support from your colleagues. This is a great time to make investments. “We are the masters of our silence, we are slaves of our words” claimed Sigmund Freud.

Your Path: Who among us does not have vices? It is easy to look at those of others and judge them. Sometimes a simple word can hurt the other person. It is always necessary to weigh your words before you speak to avoid harming yourself and others, understanding that words are powerful, for better or worse. Understanding what we do educates us to respect, not to want to do to others what we do not want to be done to us. This is a pearl of fundamental wisdom because it lays the foundations for a better world.


Sagittarius – The young Hemingway describes Milan as the romantic city par excellence. As a matter of fact, when he was still unknown, he had joined the army, but having had eyesight problems, he was recruited as a driver of the Red Cross. On one occasion, he was injured and had to recover at the hospital, where he fell in love with a nurse. He had such feelings for her that when he wrote to his parents to tell them about Milan, he also talked about Agnes, his great love, which remained only platonic.

Every feeling remains engraved in our soul and, even though we do not experience it, it leads us to a dream state that leaves important marks in our life’s story. 

Dear Sagittarius friends, despite Mars’ opposition, you will be highly prone to romanticism, an emotional force that will make you feel alive. You will have to capture the intensity of these moments, without wondering what happens next.

Love: You will escape conventional limits to experience something rousing out of the traditional standards of living. Aside from overwhelming passions, you will also find some obstacles. 

Career: At work, having this romantic side will help you look at things from a different angle. You can also turn difficulties into challenges to overcome. With such feelings, everything becomes possible. It is a state of grace that makes every chance achievable. How wonderful to live with romantic feelings! The reason is contrasted with an emotion that stimulates new professional paths. Be strategic but also passionate and romantic. 

“Romanticism is what touches sensitivity and invites her to emotion,” said Atsuro Tayama, a Japanese designer. 

Your path: a sentimental world, where the soul is dreamy, arouses an enchanted reality in people. You observe the details and the beauty of nature; you look forward to reliving your encounters that have evoked this state of mind. Live every single moment without wondering why. 


Capricorn – In mathematics, a surface is a geometric shape that has only two dimensions, without thickness, it can be limited or unlimited. In law, those who own a piece of land also own what is on it unless they make concessions creating two estates. In life, it is important to go beyond the surface: you have the chance to face problems and, through a good analysis, you see the pros and cons of everything. 

Dear Capricorn friends, it’s time to go beyond the surface. You already have a profound spirit; your seed symbolizes a seed in the ice, an apparent death that is full of life. You will find a way to overcome fears and perplexities through a clear dialogue. 

Love: Uranus stimulates your inner self; passions will be more intense if you open the door of your heart. Your originality will help you, but you need to make an effort and accept others’ limits.

Career: at work, you will be talented and quick to take the opportunities given to you. Instead of making too many commitments, you should undertake tasks you enjoy so that every challenge will spur your creative flair.  “When I got to this place, the land was shapeless and empty; the darkness covered the seabed, the spirit of God rose to the surface,” said Khalil Gibran, a Lebanese philosopher.

Your Path: Going deep is a journey that many people fear. However, it is an attitude that helps you deal with life differently, beyond your scars. It connects you with others and gives you the chance to understand them and yourself because the path that provides the answers is in the dialogue with others and not in a self-closure. Trusting others opens a new dimension where perceptions are better and allow you to find new harmonies. 


Aquarius – In the song “Heroes” David Bowie describes how everyone can be a hero, even just for one day. “I will be king/ And you will be queen/ Though nothing will drive them away/ We can beat them, just for one day/ We can be heroes, just for one day.” A story of an impossible love during the Berlin Wall’s existence, two lovers separated by the wall challenging two conflicting powers and risking their lives for love.

Dear Aquarius friends, with Mercury, Jupiter and Saturn in the sign, you will have the right motivation to follow new paths in your life. The cycles that conclude are not always easy and they seem to have no end but thanks to your determination, bravery and the right motivation you will set out to a renewal, which will lead you to overcome the loneliness of your soul. 

Love: many people of the sign have ended an important relationship or have experienced tensions that are not easy to deal with. At last, the stars will be favorable to the birth of a new love or to the overcoming of misunderstandings between the couple. Even your friendships will be renewed with great and new people you will meet.

Career: with unfavorable Uranus during this phase, avoid being impulsive. You can put an end to your dissatisfactions through a new motivation, which will lead you to make the most of your resources. “We do not know a truth without knowing its cause,” claimed Aristotle, a Greek philosopher. 

Your Path: many factors push people towards goals in different spheres of everyday life. However, if you do not have the right motivation you risk taking the wrong path. Obstacles, pain and stress often take your motivation away and you will feel apathetic, unable to act on yourself. What to do? First and foremost, you need to avoid pleasing others and analyze in depth what makes you feel good. Try to do what you like with high control of yourself, thus overcoming fears that do not allow you to believe in your success. 


Pisces – Anxieties and worries change our behavior, they lead us to restlessness and prevent us from being objective. 

Alda Merini, an Italian poetess, said:” I am very unquiet when I am tied to space“, this is the suffering caused by a reality with boundaries and limits that can not be crossed. 

The challenges in life are never easy to face. For each of us, our own problem is the biggest to solve, we no longer sleep peacefully, we are upset about it, and bad thoughts often invade and fill us with negative energies. 

Dear Pisces friends, with Mercury and Saturn in the sign, you will have enough energies to deal with an anxious state of mind caused by your tendency to take too many responsibilities, even not yours. 

Love: Uranus will help you unblock the situation of instability with your partner or your differences of opinion. Don’t feel overwhelmed and try to make the qualitative leap you need, maybe by giving each other your own responsibilities. This is a happy phase for the young people of the sign: exciting meetings are coming. 

Career: at work, you will have to go beyond your usual attitude. Avoid accumulating tensions and say what you think but with great understanding. New professional experiences are coming, don’t hold back. “Restlessness and impatience are two diseases and both of them shorten life“, said Mahatma Gandhi, an Indian philosopher. 

Your Path: First, you need to understand precisely what is bad for you and find a new inner attitude. There is a remedy for everything. You can achieve peace also with the help of breathing techniques, meditation, yoga. But if you are highly stressed you need to ask for help, without hesitation. 

Karim Rashid: welcome to Utopia, the future of design.

“If it’s style, it is a thing of the past.”– Karim Rashid




Let’s start with your training. Is there a figure who was like a mentor to you?

Early in my career, Ettore Sottsass taught me that there are many beautiful design objects, but you have to ask what they do for us? In the sense of human, inspiring objects, Memphis was a revelation. Many imposing design objects need to stand by themselves to impress. I always ask myself, what is left, if you take the design away? If it’s style, it is a thing of the past.

Also, Sottsass taught me not to be too much of an artist to be a great designer. I keep his vases, and a few Memphis works around to remind me of this. An artist is not a designer, and a designer is not an artist. What counts in the end is to help the world become a better place from aesthetics to human behavior, from the ecology to the economy. Hence design is a creative act, a social act, a political act, and an economic act.


Bladensburg Condo in Washington D.C.- 2019

During our conversations, you have mentioned you were also a student of Maestro Gaetano Pesce; what is that you learned and remember from Pesce as a teacher. Is there something of that time and of his teachings that still influence your work? And what is the best memory you have of this experience? 

I studied under Gaetano Pesce near Naples in 1983. Gaetano gave us an unusual assignment to design a drinking glass with a head or a person’s face. It was an unusual assignment. He reminded me of my father a lot because my father was quite figurative that way, and a sculpture and an artist, just like Gaetano. I learned from him the notion of Variance. Back in the 60s and 70s, he did many experiments where he would take a plywood box and inject polyurethane foam but not allow the box to fill up with foam fully. Every time he would open up the box, it would be a different chair. It was is non-serialized production. And I took his ideas of non-serialized production to a company called Nambe in Santa Fe back in the 90s. I used a CNC machine and created a software that the CNC machine would cut out of alloy vases. But because of the algorithm, it would cut a different form every time. This process was non-serialization through mass production, but obviously, I was doing it digitally. Whereas when Gaetano was doing the experiments, it was a hands-on way of creating non-serializations. He also did a beautiful table for Cassina where the workers poured the colored resin in the mold, and the colors world mix, so each table came out differently. That peculiarity was the most crucial aspect of his design philosophy.

Minimal and futuristic shapes are often the leitmotif of your creations. 


Heartbeat- Nienkamper- 2019

How would you define your style?

I don’t have a style. I focus on new social behaviors, new paradigms, new technologies, new materials, and embracing and mirroring the age we live in. To design using contemporary criteria, in turn, shapes the future. If I style, I only imitate the past.

Completely new shapes, volumes that develop within different volumes, shapes that overlap, you have given your best in fashion too. Among your collaborations with various brands, if you had to choose an experience that touched you particularly, which one would you prefer to tell us about?

I was greatly inspired when working on the HUGO BOSS Boat. Here was an opportunity to speak about speed, exclusivity, energy, power, and courage through the sailboat’s visual aesthetics. I intended to make a graphic statement by embracing new technologies and materials. I worked with Solar panels, techno paints, and techno printing technologies to shape a photogenic, memorable sailboat. Meeting Alex Thompson and touring the boat showed me the great passion needed for these races and projects. Meeting with HUGO Boss and the ATR team members, having a constant back and forth dialogue was essential in shaping the final design. Meeting with Stewart Hosford, showing me the carbon fiber samples helped steer us in the right direction for what we should base our design around. Using carbon as the direct inspiration for the livery as this boat is made of carbon fiber is the first of its kind.


Every round of designs required analysis from a performance perspective. It led to many iterations and revisions but ultimately helped us narrow down the best possible design functionally and aesthetically, marrying the Hugo Boss brand & ATR with my aesthetics. I have worn Hugo clothes and cologne for many years and always appreciated the simplicity but innovation of materials and perfection of quality. I understand the desire for innovative materials and the need to embrace new technologies in all they do. Hugo does not follow the flippant recycling of trends. I see myself with these same attributes- precision, elegance, minimal, yet humanized. 

Let’s talk about the future. What is innovation for you? Both in the field of fashion and design.

Innovation only comes when one focuses on contemporary issues and works with recent social changes, needs, and desires. Innovation and design are inseparable, as technology and design are also inseparable. Fashion should talk about how we live and not repeat antiquated derivative styles of the past. We live in a data-driven digital age, and like our digital tools, our physical world should have the same seamlessness, ease, immateriality, functionality, and smartness.


Karimotel- Concept Building Design

Why the choice of often bold colors? What is their meaning to you?

As a 5-year-old child, I loved neon colors and colors that were alive. Until today I find these colors (as accents) can change our mood, create more positivity, make us feel more alive. Color can alter our behaviors and elevate our mental well-being. Of course, color needs to be used in a very sensitive way, and then it can be a beautiful phenomenon, be it an entire building, an interior space, a product, a piece of furniture, a piece of clothing.

You are a reference point for design enthusiasts, a key figure for the new generations, especially for the transversal way you manage to develop your projects. What message would you like to give to them?

I would tell design enthusiasts and consumers to sincerely question what they’re purchasing, creating, and bringing into their homes. We must remember the obvious HUMAN issues in a product. Are consumers flippantly purchasing useless kitsch at the checkout? Are they assessing a product for criteria like Emotion, ease of use, technological advances, product methods, humor, meaning, and a positive, energetic, and proud spirit? 


Bounce- Concept Building Design

Can you tell us about your relationship with music?

I listen to a very broad range of music. Music affords me to concentrate, be inspired, dream, imagine, and become completely engrossed in what I am working on. It is an essential part of my process. I mostly listen to electronic or jazz – without lyrics since it takes me into my lyrical state of mind, and I also write my own lyrics while I am drawing.

This pandemic has forced us all to stop and reflect deeply. What do you imagine in the future of design?

Even in this hyper-consumptive world, in the future, we will own nothing – this is nature- we lease cars, we rent houses, and soon we will learn to lease or rent everything, experience it for a short while, and go on to the next. We will create a forever dynamic, ever-vast changing human condition, where everything will be cyclic, sustainable, biodegradable, customizable, personalizable, and seamless. This is Utopia, this is freedom, and this is nirvana. All the goods in the world will only exist if they give us a new or necessary experience. We will dematerialize.


Pebble Sink- Relax Design- Multicolor 2019

Eclectic characters like you are also great visionaries. Do you dream of something revolutionary?

In the next year, I plan on building my dream house! I’ve designed so many spaces for others, but this will be my own Utopia. For so long, I was inspired by Pierre Cardin’s Bubble House (Palais Bulles) in addition to his fashion and product design. The space is so soft, curved, organic, and conceptual. Like this, my dream home will engage technology, visuals, textures, lots of colors, and meet all the intrinsic needs of living a simpler, less cluttered, but more sensual envelopment. 


SWITCH, Dubai- 2020

Finally, the concept of sustainability seems to have entered concretely within the most varied areas of production. Could you give us your idea of quality of life”?

Recycling is in a cyclic paradigm now in the United States and many other countries. Conserving resources means using less raw materials and energy throughout a product’s entire life — from its development and manufacture to its use, reuse, recycling, and disposal. I am interested in biodegradable materials. I am trying to use bioplastics; the Garbo can is made of corn, and the Snap chair by Feek is made of 100% recycled polystyrene and is 97% air. A while ago, I designed packaging for a fast-food restaurant using starch and potatoes that are injection molded and have the exact appearance of plastic. These innovations are finally becoming part of the consumer zeitgeist.

Karim Rashid is one of the most groundbreaking, vibrant, and prolific designers of his generation. Over 4000 designs in production, over 300 awards, and working in over 40 countries attest to Karim’s legend of design. Each of his designs carries a unique color signature and fluidity that is inspiring and unforgettable.

His award-winning designs include luxury goods for Christofle, Veuve Clicquot, and Alessi, democratic products for Umbra, Bobble, and 3M, furniture for Bonaldo and Vondom, lighting for Artemide and Fontana Arte, high tech products for Asus and Samsung, surface design for Marburg and Abet Laminati, brand identity for Citibank and Sony Ericsson and packaging for Method, Paris Baguette, Kenzo and Hugo Boss.

Karim’s work is featured in 20 permanent collections and he exhibits art in galleries worldwide. Karim is a perennial winner of the Red Dot award, Chicago Athenaeum Good Design award, I. D. Magazine Annual Design Review, IDSA Industrial Design Excellence award.

Illustrated portrait by Maria Angela Lombardi

Photo courtesy of Karim Rashid Studio in NY

www.karimrashid.com

11 Trophy Staples To See You Through The Festive Season

As the world hunkers down ahead of a new lockdown and a tartly cold season, practicality comes with reason. And if you thought comfort can’t be classy, we invite you to think again. As well as offering a simple-to-twinkle route to your daily routine (check out Bottega Veneta’s cult options), comfort staples provide the right balance between ease and a tongue-in-cheek style currency to see you through the frosty days.

Gucci’s suede-trimmed number with two-toned fastenings doesn’t fail to make an impact, while Lee offers wear-anywhere practicality with its quilted lining, for added comfort. From woollen shirt options to figure-hugging alternatives, shop Man In Town’s edit of the best trophy staples to wear this winter.


 

 

 

Gucci

Web-stripe suede-trimmed wool-blend cardigan, £1,150, available at matchesfashion.com

Raey

Loose-fit V-neck cashmere sweater, £395, available at matchesfashion.com  

Bottega Veneta

Cargo-pocket cotton-blend trousers, £655, available at matchesfashion.com

Loewe

Anagram-embroidered striped sweater, £450, available at matchesfashion.com

Triumph Motorcycles

Combustion worker shirt khaki, £90, available at triumphmotorcycles.co.uk

Lee

Sherpa rider jacket corduroy in olive green, £84, available at lee.com


 

 

Mercer Amsterdam

Racer lux alcantara pearl grey, £230, available at merceramsterdam.com

Umbro

Terrain cargo pant in camouflage, £60, available at umbro.co.uk

Samsoe Samsoe

Neil crew neck jumper, £150, available at samsoe.com

Grenson

Sneaker 22 men’s, £195, available at grenson.com

Simon Carter

Surfer boards and scissors face masks, £20, available at simoncarter.net

10 Pairs Of Feel-Good Summer Staples That Provide An Instant Wardrobe Boost

If there’s one way to ensure you keep up an optimum regime of wear-anywhere options, a selection of great versatile options might be the ultimate solution to solve your mid-season drama. Is it fitted, or slouchy? The right answer may have not yet come to fruition, but the best propositions are the ones comfortable enough to support you day and night. And, now restrictions are being lifted and normality is slowly-but-surely resuming, there’s no better time to invest in season-defining staples that exude comfort and peerless functionality. Whatever style takes your fancy, the formula reads: dress good, feel better. 

Perhaps you lean towards a ribbed crewneck tee à la Bottega Veneta, or maybe your proclivity knocks harder for a maxi-printed option from ALL SAINTS. Look to Finisterre for a smart update in tailoring, and Wrangler for the timeless denim number. Below, Man In Town’s pick of the best feel-good summer staples to buy now and wear forever, to provide your wardrobe an instant boost. You’re welcome. 

BOTTEGA VENETA

SHORT SLEEVED COTTON T-SHIRT, £305, BOTTEGAVENETA.COM


ALLSAINTS

VENTURA LONG SLEEVE SHIRT, £95, ALLSAINTS.COM


WRANGLER

CLEAN-CUT SHIRT IN DENIM, £60, WRANGLER.COM


FINISTERRE

STAFFORD WORKWEAR JACKET, £135, FINISTERRE.COM


PUMA

PUMA x MR DOODLE RS-2K TRAINERS, £100, PUMA.COM


MFPEN

LIGHT-STRIPED OVERSIZED SHIRT, £160, MFPEN.COM


URBANEARS

URBANEARS LUMA, £79, URBANEARS.COM


LEE

CHETOPA JACKET IN RINSE, £77, LEE.COM


LEE

SHORT SLEEVE RESORT SHIRT IN SUMMER BLUE, £22.50, LEE.COM


SAMSØE SAMSØE

OSCAR AX SHIRT, £112, SAMSOE.COM

Explore the wild with NICCE’s LA-inspired SS20 collection

It wasn’t all a luxury affair when fashion chose to meet its modern forces. In reality, this meant simple, fairly traditional clothes, done well. Any collection American-related would be missing a trick if it wasn’t a little focused on athleisurewear. Fortunately, NICCE wouldn’t make such a mistake –  the brand’s Spring/Summer 2020 collection pays homage to the laid-back ease of Los Angeles in the 90’s. Best of all, a super-tactile, utility number with a functional texture is the kind of thing you would want to wear every day. Silhouettes are slouchy and unfussy, with baggy shorts and soft-shouldered jumpers playing key roles. There was a kind of understated beauty to low-key bucket hats in intelligently chosen fabrics and classic jackets that were tweaked just a touch and cropped. This season imbues hints of the utility trend, showcased through gradient tones. Colours mirror iconic NICCE jersey staples, offering newness across wardrobe essentials for upcoming months. Creating the perfect base for festival season, the Kurt-Cobain-esque stripe tees serve-up in nostalgia. This was a collection low on concept and all the better for it; there’s a great deal to love here, which certainly isn’t something you can say at every street brand. 

Available at the brand’s site.

Photographed by Ollie Radford

Dickies’ Latest Collection Looks At The Colourful ‘90s For SS20

Referencing a time when freedom was in the air and everyone was there for a good time (how wistful), Dickies adopted 1990’S tailoring elements and styles to create their SS20 collection. The brand adopts those famous nineties styles into something more contemporary. Using modern, lightweight construction techniques and breathable premium cottons, the brand fused tailoring and sportswear shapes to create a modern take on that urban spirit we’ve always yearned for. Colourful codes are one – of the many – Dickies’ trademarks. Never one to shy away from the brightest of hues, for SS20 Dickies thought it was important to lighten-up our lives in these dark and stressful times. 

A poised take on the retro-inspired trend, the brand taps a past that sees a future filled with novelty and fresh cues. Building a heritage on existing styles within the iconic range, Dickies’ designers deliver a lesson in dynamic and versatile dressing intermixing a blasé take on chromatic elements. Hybrids are made-up of two sight-grabbing combinations: multi-panel constructions and of bold blues, reds and yellows juxtaposed by a softer palette.

Ever since the company’s prime foray, counting over 100 years since its dawn, the brand’s expansion has led to the reinvention of wearable and functional apparel that adopts a culture spanning beyond the likes of functionality – but prods to a perpetuation of practical-driven fashion. Now, more than ever. 

The Couture Books By Assouline: Between Style, Poised Craftsmanship And “Art De Vivre”

If you ever wondered who Prosper and Martine Assouline are, look no further than here. Booksellers of luxury, trailblazers across editorial haute couture, eclectic connoisseurs lusting for voluptuous beauty embodied in the opulence of the most precious accessories; but there’s more. The duo are the pioneering founders of the iconic luxury publishing house of the same name and the forerunners of a “Culture of Luxury” typified in the niche book, an art object for furniture and collection. Luxury isn’t equivalent of wealth, but, as Franca Sozzani well wrote in her editorial: “Luxury today implies exclusivity, almost uniqueness and not because it is for the few, but because it is special. Luxury is research, the possibility of experimenting new ways, of finding new solutions that are not too obvious and already seen.”

Moreover, enlivened by a spirit of “nouvelle vague” in the early 1990s, the Assouline couple perpetuated the intuitive and modern vision of illustrated books to a market that was still too conservative and lacking in “fashionable” publications. 

In 1994, Prosper and Martin decided to dedicate a photo book to their favourite hotel La Colombe D’Or, a small retreat also loved by Jacques Prévert just outside the village of Saint-Paul de Vence, known throughout the world as an intimate place where Provencal art de vivre blends with a stunning private collection of modern art. “For us it is the quintessence of luxury, a place where you can eat simple tomatoes surrounded by paintings by Picasso and Léger“. After this dedication of love, with the successful “pilot” series Memoire de Mode, a tribute to some great designers, they chose a building on Park Avenue, in international and cosmopolitan New York as the headquarters of their receptacle of style and culture, the Maison D’Édition Assouline. And in 2014 they open their first flagship store in the heart of the busy Piccadilly Circus, in an old bank designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens in 1922. A distinct philosophy is at the basis of a plethora of publications part of the Assouline brand: an identifiable identity along with a polished savoir faire marry a contemporary visual narrative.

Case in point: The ability to observe a subject from a different, unprecedented perspective, as in “Dinner with Jackson Pollock.” A visual journey through the rooms and garden of Springs’ Long Island home, Pollock’s studio, the portraits and dishes that the artist and his wife, Lee Krasner, loved to offer their guests. Thus, discovering a “Jack the Dripper”, not only a painter, but also a baker lover of homemade pastries and cakes, dedicated to fishing, gardening and the first fruits of the season. The book – with a preface by Francesca Pollock, the painter’s nephew – illustrates about fifty recipes that collect Lee Krasner’s handwritten cues, Pollock’s creations and his mother Stella’s traditional recipes, but also many suggestions from famous friends.

Flaunt luxury with a praise for handcrafted luxury bookmaking, as in “The Impossible Collection of Bentley.” A fine $1,450.00 coffee table book bound in ivory leather to celebrate the centenary of the famous British car manufacturer founded in 1919 by young engineer Walter Owen Bentley. An elegant photographic tour through 200 pages, 150 illustrations and 100 revolutionary and glorious Bentley models from the 3-Litre Le Mans winner to the luxurious S2 to the Continental GT coupé.

Design Special Edition, as in “Mosques: The 100 Most Iconic Islamic Houses of Worship.” A book, in just 300 copies, made of silk, velvet and woven gold threads that accompanies readers to the entrance to the 100 most significant prayer buildings in the world, to celebrate the great beauty of architectural wonders. The places of worship, from time immemorial, have been the sign of human greatness: the nobler and more sumptuous the temple, the nobler the society. And this spirit of magnificence is no exception to the imposing architecture of Islamic mosques with their precious decorations, enamels, carvings, marble and ceramics. 

On a style note, as in “Gaetano Savini: The Man Who Was Brioni.” At a time when Savile Row was synonymous with men’s style, an Italian figure, Gaetano Savini, reinvented men’s fashion with the luxury brand Brioni, and his far-sighted legacy is celebrated in this spectacular illustrated edition. Full of letters, photographs and personal anecdotes, this volume recounts the brand known as “the Dior of menswear”. 

Travel with the imagination, as happens with the oversized volume dedicated to “AIUla”. A journey, in huge format, into the fertile and remote Valley of AIUla, in Saudi Arabia, with its pure oases, rock paintings, majestic tombs dug out of the rocks, rugged mountains and the suggestive canyons.

We love books more than anything. They are the testimony of the present and the past. They are legacy and innovation. They are what remains in the trifling of the digital world.”

Tie-Dye Is Spurring Hot Vibes Only For 2020 – (So You’re Welcome, DIY)

If your proclivity longs for a cool-meets-slick style renaissance, stop everything you’re doing: The tie-dye technique is a mainstay, so be prepared to embrace it.

Tie-dye was once the stuff of elementary school arts and crafts–DIY gifts bestowed upon parents and grandparents on special occasions. Then, it became a cure for middle school boredom–a photogenic (and budget-appropriate) backyard event for kids who preferred matching tees to friendly bracelets. Now, more than ever, it’s become a full-blown (and sworn) trend for Spring/Summer 2020. Indeed, tie-dye has peaked the helmed of this year’s most coveted trends, elevating fashion to a new status, already pervading our Instagram feeds and favourite retailers.

The 2020 tie-dye obsession began back in September (during the Spring/Summer 2020 catwalks), when R13, Prabal Gurung and Eckhaus Latta stormed tie-dye pieces at New York Fashion Week. Of course, these trend-frenzy items barely resembled their forefathers. 

With tie-due clothes from years past evoke images of the ‘60s and ‘70s–or to say the least, memories of haphazardly dumping colour-rich dye onto cheap T-shirts-contemporary tie-dye hybrids feel crisp and edgy. Once-distinct shades haven’t blended together to form new, compelling tones; they’re starkly separate, acting more as a print than a chromatic fusion.

The result? A dynamic, hot trend that feels clean but organic, bohemian but tailored, avant-garde but contemporary. The reinvention of tie-dye tells us a story of enormous juxtaposition: but juxtaposition that triumphs (decade after decade), that uplifts (one’s dreary style conundrum through tonal psychedelia), that works (if paired accurately), time and time again.

Tie-dye is too often linked to the puerile pleasure-seekers of Ken Kesey’s party bus. But as designer brands refuse to let go (case in point: Loewe’s SS20 iconic tie-dye collection), and as famous men of all shades further indulge, tie-dye isn’t solely for festival season. Though this 2020 fashion trend has been in the works throughout lockdown around the globe, it’s already trickled in many (big and small) fashion retailers. By shopping designers and budget-friendly staples, alike, you can get an incredibly power-tone glimpse at the perfect tie-dye composition (and serve-up the best off-duty looks in the process).

Dip your eye in the below gallery and get ready for a full immersion, assured you won’t sigh nor yawn. You’re welcome.

The irresistible Salim Kechiouche

Algerian-French actor Salim Kechiouche started out young, starring in the film À Toute Vitesse at the age of just 15. He then went on to become France’s kick-boxing champion in 1998, before deciding to pursue his acting career full-time. Now approaching 40, he has just finished working on acclaimed French director Abdellatif Kechiche’s upcoming film (as yet unnamed), having collaborated closely with him over the years, starring in the award-winning Blue is the Warmest Colour and the recent Mektoub My Love. We caught up with him in Paris

What do boxing and acting have in common and where do they most differ?
The desire to be in the spotlight, to be seen, to show what you’re capable of. The fact that you have to make sacrifices and have a strong mentality. In boxing, you have to hide your pain, while in acting it’s the opposite: you have to open up and show your feelings. I’ve always felt like I was being pulled in two directions. I like it when you see actors and actresses come within an inch of madness or approach very strong human emotions. You can maintain strength and at the same time keep a certain fragility. It’s a delicate balance.

You have made three films with film director Abdellatif Kechiche. What’s your relationship like with him?
I’m very proud of our relationship. I think we have a lot of respect for one another. We have quite a lot in common: he also boxed and acted on stage. It’s as if we were family – he’s like a big brother. He has a strong influence on me, for sure. Working with him changes your perspective on this profession. He’s very engaged as a director and so it’s impressive to work with him. You learn a lot.

How do you approach a role?
You become the character and the character becomes you – it’s a meeting between the two. It’s instinctive and you have to try and have confidence in yourself.

You broach themes of adolescence, masculinity and sexuality in your work. How do you see your role as an actor in relation to such issues?
People write to me a lot about the fact that certain roles have helped them to feel freer. Often roles have a message – that’s more interesting as it touches people in a more profound way. I try to maintain my freedom and, for me, cinema and theatre are untouchable spaces for freedom. So if there is a message through that, that’s not bad going as a role in society.

What’s next?
The next film with Kechiche, which we’ve just finished. I’d like to return to the stage and I want to write – it’s something different, but I’m trying!

 

 ®All Rights Reserved

Talent: Salim Kechiouche
Interview: Kim Laidlaw
Photographer: Lucie Hugary
Styling: Nicholas Galletti
Grooming: Richard Blandel @ B agency

 

 

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