Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Mode Parade Reviews Canali S/S 2017




   I don’t know about you, but I am getting older

   Tastes shift, body parts misalign, hormones may mellow. The rebel often becomes the classicist. Mick Jagger has a knighthood (and he’s far from the only offbeat example). I don’t dress in the same excitable, though somewhat haphazard fashion I once did in my 20s. Nothing is truly set in stone. Even traditions

   Traditions need to reinvent themselves – where necessary –  to stay relevant; often, someone with a love for such things does this themselves. In this milieu, it was the modernisers, modernists and mods that made suiting a desirable thing to the young in the 1950s and 1960s; the likes of Michael Fish, Tommy Nutter, Edward Sexton and Antony Price in the 1960s and 1970s that catered to a flamboyantly refined rebel; Giorgio Armani imbuing suits with a certain relaxed loucheness in the 1980s and Hedi Slimane veering deftly from luxurious, aristocratic minimalism in the late 1990s to tight insouciance in the ensuing decade. Simply put: suiting always finds a way to stay interesting; often even the most interesting form of menswear available





   Canali, who approached me to review their upcoming spring/summer collection, are normally viewed by the online cognoscenti as stalwart traditionalists, albeit with a signature Italian flair. Message board mavens have mused over their cuts and craft, whilst wondering how many sprezzatura points their patronage will earn them when prepping their next What I’m Wearing Today home shot editorial. I like to think of Canali in the vein of tradition refiners. They don’t seek to reinvent the wheel; rather, they evolve carefully with the times or reprise adventurous ideas that worked and could easily become part of a canon





   One of the best reasons to buy into Italian-made clothing products is the sheer range of great fabrics on offer, an area this collection does very well in. Given its seasonal aims, cotton, linen and lighter woven wool are naturally present and correct; however, in keeping with the Italian bravura approach, standard items are rendered in upscale, inventive versions of stalwart materials. I look to the suits and separates made from malfile cotton, a normally rougher looking material suddenly evolved into a refined, natural graphite version of itself. Or the subtlety of the reversible pique jacket that enables the wearer to hint at the bold geometric print of its cotton-silk side when worn as its leather self. Or the neckscarves that make one want to periodically run their fingers along them

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   And that’s to say nothing of the overall tailoring. Canali can be relied upon to cut clothing and cut it well. And given the season, it’s also cut for comfort, resulting in an appealing paradox of formal looks that are nevertheless aimed at the nearest party (how’s that for an Italian tradition?). Jagger would be very tempted. Perhaps you may be, too



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