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MILAN — Tod’s chairman and chief executive officer Diego Della Valle believes the time has come to expand the brand’s men’s wear line, with a comprehensive collection spanning outerwear to polos, shirts and pants.
This story first appeared in the January 14, 2014 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“It’s the right moment, and I feel there is reason to further develop our product offer,” said Della Valle at a Tod’s presentation Monday, once again held at the beautiful Villa Necchi Campiglio. The collection will be “in line with the brand’s design codes, quality and craftsmanship to represent its lifestyle,” he said. The entrepreneur’s ideal customer is “a man who travels and wants to be comfortable, wearing functional clothes, without sacrificing elegance.”
Asked if this project was defined to meet demand from a growing male consumer population in Asia, Della Valle responded in the negative, simply saying that he had been thinking about this project for “many years,” and that he was “convinced” of the need for a total-look collection now.
The line is designed by an in-house team, and separate from the recently extended women’s division under the creative direction of Alessandra Facchinetti. It is also produced internally. “We have a structure we have developed over the years,” said Della Valle, whose Tod’s Group also includes the Hogan, Fay and Roger Vivier brands. He declined to provide business expectations as he said “it will take at least a year” to understand the line’s performance.
For the first time, 20 models posed at the villa wearing pieces including tweed suits; velvet blazers over turtleneck and dark suede trousers, and jackets made with the pairing of wool flannel and brushed cotton, and carrying the new Script Bag, a roomy shopper with an inner folder that can be removed and Tod’s signature rubber pebble on the base.
While sophisticated and luxurious, the collection had a soft, relaxed and bon-vivant country lifestyle vibe. Tonal suit separates were layered with puffer vests, worn over turtlenecks, sidestepping a more staple business look. The team opted for narrow silhouettes, embellished with Della Valle’s own traditional signature scarf, and was on trend with the return of the peacoat. It also developed traditional gentlemen’s patterns, with printed herringbone. Given Tod’s mastery of leather, it was not surprising to see standout suede jackets and cropped biker jackets in a rich cognac brown hue.